10.26.2016

Becky's Stoltzfus Sibling Reunion

I (Becky) am so blessed to have godly parents who have been an example for me in so very many areas of life-loving and serving God, reading His Word everyday, attending church regularly, sacrificially giving to those in need, living lives of honesty and integrity, embracing the gift of children, being faithful to each other in marriage (can I hear a cheer for 65 years of commitment to their marriage???), and praying everyday for their family.  FYI, they are not perfect but in some very key areas, they have been successful.  I am grateful for they blessing they are to me and my extended family.
About a year ago, some of my siblings began planning for a special weekend retreat for only my parents, their children, and the spouses.  Believe me, this was not an easy feat to find a weekend that worked for all of us.  It came with some degree or another of sacrifice for all of us, but it was worth every effort that we made.  We met on a September Friday evening at a beautiful, spacious, barn home in PA, complete with 10 bedrooms-one for each sibling/spouse and one for my parents.
Here are the parents-I know that they not only are still in love but are also still enjoying the journey!!
It is so fun to see them laugh!
We actually spent quite a bit of time simply enjoying conversation with each other.  Here all the men seem mesmerized by some story that Marlin was telling.
My sister, Marty, and two of her brother-in-laws had some sort of joke about what was happening to this last piece of cheesecake.  Yes, we had amazingly, delicious food all weekend long!
Two siblings and or parents prepared a meal with everyone helping to clean up afterward.  Marlin and I assisted my sister, Sarah, and her husband Jim in serving a Mexican breakfast buffet of fried potatoes, sauteed vegetables, scrambled eggs, sausage, cheese sauce, salsa, and this yummy hot mustard sauce which Sarah cans herself.  For those who still had room for more food there was also a fresh fruit platter and coffee cake.  So sorry you missed it! =)
The theme was "Cowboys".
My sister spent a lot of time prepping for this buffet.  She ended up getting most of the supplies since they drove to the cabin and we flew in.
Nice looking cowboys, eh????
The living room had this amazing fireplace, plenty of natural lighting, comfortable couches and chairs, and wooden beams in the ceiling.
My brother, Elam, sent a list of questions to my parents so they could prepare their answers before the reunion and then read their answers at the reunion.  It was like a group story because as they read through their answers, the siblings would jump in with their added comments and memories.  It was a collection of stories dating all the way back to great grand parents-reminding us of God's faithfulness, His protection, and goodness.  Their were some tears of joy and sorrow along the way.
After they shared their stories, each sibling and/or spouse gave an update in their children.  My parents have 9 children, 8 in laws, 50 grandchildren plus 14 grandchildren's spouses, and 17 great grandchildren!! 
I didn't remember to take pictures of every meal, but each one was a culinary delight!
My only regret is that the weekend wasn't longer. It was truly a blessed time of enjoying the very special relationship of family.  These kind of relationships are nurtured and grown in a healthy home of love, godliness, and sacrifice.  Thank-you to my very special family, to my beloved parents, and most of all to God who makes this kind of home possible.

"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. 
But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law doeth He meditate day and night.
Psalm 1:1+2

Written/posted by Becky

8 comments:

  1. Your parents are very blessed. This looks like a wonderful family reunion, filled with joy and laughter.
    Blessings,
    Bibi

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  2. What a beautiful weekend spent with your amazing siblings and parents. I too am so grateful to have been blessed with wonderful parents and godly upbringing. My own mother will be 99 on November 1st. My father passed in 1998 at 92. Praying for many more family gatherings for all.

    Blessings, Mari

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  3. Is the bontraget family on instagram? If so what is your instagram name.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, we do not have a family instagram account. Several of us have personal accounts but they are private. Most of what we post there gets posted on the blogs so if you follow along here you will see the pictures too!

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  4. So precious! And that cabin looks like the perfect location. :)

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  5. This is truly an inspiration!

    ReplyDelete

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