3 fun gatherings

Have you noticed my lack of photos? My computer is full with no more storage for my SD card. For two years I have been deleting other photos to make room, but now I'm having a hard time deleting photos because I still want them. Anyhoo, that's the reason I don't have pics on here lately...

I have three fun gatherings I wanted to write about though all set in our living room.

1) Lego Movie Night
Ivar had planned for this night for months and months. He is super into making Stop Motion movies using his legos with his friend Blake. So he had this idea to invite six families for a movie night where he would sell popcorn, monster cookies and apple cider to earn some money. And in exchange everyone could enjoy his great movies.

It was pretty awesome. He explained each movie a bit (most last like 10-15 seconds) and he had them organized in categories: the early years (his first videos), Batman and Robin, Barf Monster and Favorites. After the movies and concessions, we brought out two huge bins of legos I checked out from our library and all the kids could build their own creations. It was a super fun night of family fun.

2) Hattie-Rory-Ivar Birthday celebration with the Groves
We had the Groves clan here to celebrate these three and it was a really great day. We went to church and then came home for chili and corn bread. But something terrible happened. When I sat down to eat my chili, I took a bite and it was gross. Something was seriously wrong. Have you ever had this happen before?!! As a host, it's like the worst thing possible. I couldn't figure out what had happened. I make great chili and I genuinely found this chili inedible.

I told my table not to eat theirs, but they were polite. I brought it up to Rory later and he said he thought the chili was great. (ha! what on earth?!!) But he was wrong. It was the opposite of great. Not until everyone left and Rory went to put the leftover chili tupperware did we figure it out (I had told Rory to toss it all). But he still liked it and wanted to save it, so it was then that he found one solid inch of burned chili on the bottom of my huge kettle. I had come home from church, tried to heat the chili real fast, and as a result there was an added smokey (charred...) flavor to my usual soup.

Honestly, while it was happening I was thinking, "I think I'm done entertaining. It's just too stressful. I always forget something or ruin something..." But I think God heard that because after we opened gifts I had each family give a life update with prayer requests so we could know what was really happening in each other's lives. And that part was so, so good. There is a lot that doesn't come up during regular conversation and I loved hearing where everyone was at. And it was during that time that I decided maybe I would host another gathering again sometime.

3) Rory's 41st birthday
Which was a good thing that I decided that because I had four other couples coming over one week later for Rory's birthday. For months we have wanted to get these four other couples who are hobby farming like we are together in one room. So I sent out the invite and asked everyone to get a sitter.

We had each couple share their dreams for their farm and any prayer requests they had. And it was so rich. There were so many similarities in prayer concerns given our age and life stage and I felt so grateful for this time together. These were also families that showed up to help immediately after the tornado hit two of our farms. So we talked about the goodness of community and working together and already have our next gathering on the calendar to all help butcher one family's 120 chickens. And we are genuinely enthused!

So I will continue to invited people into our house. :) I will say that I never seem to get everything right, but I still think it is worth it to invite others over in the name of community, fellowship and friendship.

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