As I've mentioned before in my Thanksgiving and Christmas posts, we are not very formal, when it comes to family gatherings. You won't find gorgeous tablescapes, fine china, silver, goblets of wine, and flutes of champagne. Scott is the youngest of four, so when our family all gets together, well, its huge. All totaled, there are seven adults and fourteen grandchildren, ranging from age 20 to age 4; Ten boys and four girls. So generally, our focus is to get all the food put out so the men and the boys can pounce on it. All the boys with the exception of Landon are pre-teen and older, so its like a pack of starving wolves. LOL We definitely do buffet style - all the time. Oh - and paper plates. LOTS of paper plates. So we can just enjoy each other and not spend a ton of time cleaning up.
We generally rotate holiday hostess responsibilities, although I haven't hosted for a couple of years now, since we started remodeling everything. This year, Scott's sister's family invited our family to their farm in Tripoli (pronounced Trah-POLE-lah).
|Tammy is in black. Nancy is in purple.|
and her husband, Dwayne
(or Dewey, as we affectionately call him)...
own and operate Busch Hogs. They live on a working farm in northeastern Iowa. Duane owns around 5,000 head of hogs and farms I don't know how many acres of corn and beans. Tammy also works as a Lab Tech at our local hospital. They have four children, three boys and one girl, ages sixteen to six.
We always love to go to Tammy and Duane's.
Because Duane is the best griller EVER.
Mostly, the men stand outside around watch Duane grill...
And to eat it as fast as it comes off...
All the meat is raised by Duane and Tammy on their farm... Hamburger, Porkburger, Steak, Pork Chops, and Brats. They even have their own meat locker on their farm, which is where they cut up and process the meat that they raise for their family's use. Even the bacon in our sides came from the pork they raise.
Seriously, we are very spoiled.
We rarely, if ever, have to buy meat from the store.
I miss my fresh seafood from the coast, but I love our farm grown beef out here. You can't find steaks like that at the grocery store.
Its pretty much a free-for-all when we all get together.
The older boys play football or ride four wheelers...
because we spend a lot of time shooing them outside.
With five of the ten boys being wrestlers,
its inevitable that this happens:
Its gets pretty loud when all five get in on the action.
Especially when the men start egging them on. LOL
The baby girls play dress up...
and because they are only five months apart,
we always check to see who's taller...
Its pretty much always a toss up. ;)
It was quite the celebration when those two came along.
After nine straight births of boys,
we had given up that there would ever be more than two girls.
Needless to say, they are the princesses. :)
And poor little Landon is usually left to his own devices,
since he's so much younger than all the other boys.
We all line up and stuff ourselves sick with all the goodies
that everyone has contributed to our potluck style meal:
This year our menu included:
Meat: Steaks, Pork Chops, Brats, Hamburger, and Porkburger
Sides: Green Beans, Fresh Asparagus out of the asparagus patch, Scalloped Corn, Fried Potatoes and Bacon, Baked Bean Casserole, Pasta Salad, Vegetable Tray, Grilled Peppers, Onions, and Mushrooms, Seven Layer Salad, and Grilled Garlic Bread.
Dessert: Strawberry Pie, and my contributions for the desserts...
|Rice Krispy and Cadbury Egg Bundt Cake|
|Recipe: Two layers of Ice Cream Sandwiches, Cool Whip, and crushed Butterfingers. Freeze two hours. Done. YUMMY|
Rob, who is the next to oldest grandchild is a Junior at Simpson College and is studying to be a physicist. Smart boy, that Rob.
Family is just one of the many reasons I love living in Iowa...
Even if Tammy did try to take a picture of me because I was busy being paparazzi all afternoon. She missed. LOL
Easter: A time to be thankful for our family and more importantly, our Saviour, who's death on the cross saved us all.
And totally NOT about the Easter baskets I set out when we got home late last night.