Last night in Utah

I THINK this was the last night. To tell you the truth, the last few days all mixed together in a blur of packing, last minute errands and finds (Annie backpack for $6, yes!), and cousins cousins cousins.
Oh man, they were so tired of me and my camera by this point.
Here we were together once more, in the happy backyard of my parents, playing, fighting, loving, eating millions of beans from the garden (Oh! I forgot a post about the bean plant overload! It's because those pictures were on my phone, of course.  It will come), playing gramps's traveling "pinano" (Soren-speak), painting fingers and toes, and in general soaking up our last minutes together.
 
It's hard for me to put into words what my summers with my family do for me the rest of the year. Rest. Relaxation. Rejuvenation. Support. Laughter. Beauty. Fun. Adventure. Safety. Love.
I appreciate being with people who've known me forever and love me all the same.
I appreciate not having to think of what to make for dinner every. single. night.
I appreciate the love and attention given to each one of my kiddos--they all leave believing they are the favorite grandchild.
I appreciate the beauty of the west.
I appreciate dear friends who will take us for an hour or a weekend, and for others who understand when our visit has to wait for next time. 
I appreciate the patience of many as we try and gather as large groups in multiple places.
I appreciate many things.
Anyway.
I would say "Until next time, Utah!" but I have to show you the beans first!

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