After a long process of international adoption, this precious little Ethiopian baby was officially placed in the arms of her new mommy, my niece Aubrey, the end of February. Aubrey, 30, is a single parent and has been blessed beyond words with this beautiful little angel, to add joy in her life. Kelly and I took a quick road trip to Oklahoma, leaving on Saturday night after Lindsey left for prom, to be there for the baby blessing of Marren on Sunday and an open house that afternoon. Marren is now eight months old and has such a loving disposition.
Aubrey is a great mother and adores her little girl to pieces. Who wouldn't?
My sister, Julie, gets a little Marren snuggling time in.
She's popular with all of us, so we had to take turns.
My sister, Valerie, now gets a little love from Marren.
Here's my sister, Tracy, who is Marren's grandma, with her daughter, Aubrey, Marren's mom.
Tracy prepared a nice feast for the Sunday afternoon open house.
The bright and cheery colors added to the celebration.
Here's my dad, Ervin, and my sister, Julie.
Here's my sister, Tracy, with her husband, Jimmy.
Here's a shot in the sprinkling rain of Valerie, me, Tracy, and Julie. Our brother, Marc, was the only missing sibling.
Kelly was exhausted from the six hour road trip from Austin to Moore. We arrived at about 3 am, then got up early the next morning for church at 9 am. Kelly was honored to be asked to give the baby's blessing, which is a special prayer given to newborn babies, or newly adopted in this case, in our church, where they receive a wonderful blessing and a name whereby they will be known throughout their lives. A baby blessing can also mention blessings or things that may come in the baby or child's life, such as good health and anything pertaining to them as they grow. It was a nice blessing and we were thankful to have been there for it. In this picture, Kelly had been studying Chinese while all the women were socializing, until he had fallen asleep.
Here's Mom and me. We got a little reprieve from the light rain with the roof on the edge of the house.
Tracy and Julie had the umbrella to help preserve their dry clothes and hair.
The hostess with the mostess, Tracy is getting ready for guests to arrive.
Here's my dad and his significant other, Morene, and moi.
Here's my niece, Jessica, and her sweetheart, Dustin. They're expecting a baby in October.
Valerie will do what ever it takes to make people laugh. She's such a goofball.
Here's Granddad and Marren.
Now I get a moment with my completely darling and sweet as can be great niece, the guest of honor! I love this little angel.
Here's Marren and her mommy, Aubrey.
This is George and Wanda, whom I have known my entire life. My mom and dad bought a house a few doors down from them in 1962, and though my parents divorced when I was five-years-old, these two wonderful friends still live in that same house in Moore, Oklahoma.
Here's Julie with Aunt Joanna. I was named after her--my middle name is Jo Anna.
Here's my cousin, Phyllis, and her daughter, Brandy. Brandy has two kids, Lincoln and Libby, who are 4 and 5, but were not at the open house. Brandy is holding 3-week-old Madison.
Angie and her two younger kids, Darby and Cooper, hung out with us for a while. I've known Angie since she was born. Wow. She is Wanda and George's granddaughter.
My dad's sister, Aunt Tillie, came to the open house. Here she is with three of her four daughters, Connie and Lisa, and Shannon brought the newest addition to their family, baby Madison Fay, who is Connie's son, Alex's baby.
Robin, Valerie's friend from high school, and her son, "Jellybean" stopped by to see everyone. I have not seen Robin in almost thirty years and it was so good to reunite with her.
Valerie's long-time friend, Daleta, and her daughter, Rachel, were some of the guests. Rachel got married last year. Congratulations!
About 24 hours after we had left our home in Austin, Kelly and I needed to get back home to our kids. We took one last picture before the six-hour drive. From the left, it's Valerie, Mom, Tracy, me, then Julie. What a funny coincidence it was that we all color coordinated with each other quite nicely.
- On a side note, I want to say THANK YOU to Kelly, for driving the whole way. You're a sweet husband! To keep us company, we listened to The Scarlet Pimpernel, a lovely romantic historical fiction story that took place in 1792 France and England, with the featured characters of Percy Blakeney and his wife, Marguerite.