Maust family, UNITE! Or...reunite.

3:56 PM

    The next leg of our trip (yes, I'm STILL blogging about our trip.  So much to cover!) was a brief, but wonderful stay at my Uncle Larry and Aunt Cherie's house in Tennessee for a family reunion.  The Maust family is spread out over quite a few states, and it seems we don't get together near as much as we used to.  Sad, very sad indeed.  But these short few days were cherished as we reconnected and caught up on each other's lives! 

   First of all, let me give you a brief tour around the house.  They bought an old mill house, (it has a water wheel on the side that I neglected to get a picture of) and fixed it up all purty-like.  Honestly, it's gorgeous.  They put so much work into it, and it has literally transformed over the years from what it once was. And I didn't even get pictures of all of it or the lovely guest house, where we stayed.  But here are a few of the pictures I did get. 

    This front porch greets you as you walk up the steps and into the front door, and is a place where people liked to gather in the mornings with a cup of coffee and a conversation.  Every home should have a front porch, in my opinion. 

   Moving inside, a place that beckons you in is the kitchen.  I love the high ceiling and the bins for her dry goods, and I'm so jealous of her huge pantry!

 I want one!

 (Small eating area off of the kitchen)

    Walking up the stairs (behind the couch the two boys are on) opens up into this den, or family room, that was a popular spot.

  Someone's been playing hard. :)
 Here's a sunny little nook for reading or putting puzzles together, and is positively inviting.
 Loft above the kitchen, a.k.a play room.
 View from the play room.
 Part of one of the upstairs bedrooms.

 Porch below the front deck

 Uncle Larry and Uncle Darryl

    We tried to pack in as much fun as we could into our few short days, and I think we succeeded!  The trip consisted of: 
 1. A bridal shower for Bito and Jackie!  It was so great to get to know her fiance, and welcome him into the Maust family.  As part of the shower, they had to bake a cake without a recipe! 

2. Four-wheeling!  They have some of the absolute greatest places to ride four wheeler.  County "roads" that are more like cow paths that cross streams and twist and turn through the thick woods. 
3.  Water-falling.   Yes, it's a verb.

4.  No trip to Tennessee would be complete without spelunking!  Uncle Larry, our fearless leader, led this motley crew through the caves that night.  Somehow, the swarms of bats, steep climbs up and down slippery clay, repelling down the rocks, and crawling through tight spots was all a bit harder and scarier than I remembered!  Same caves though, so I must have just gotten weaker and wimpier post-baby. :)
5.  Campfires and roasting marshmellows
 6.  And of course, spending quality time with family.  I say we make this an annual event!  Who's with me?
 Joce with her great-Grandma Thelma
 And great-Grandpa Clayton

 Tirzah, Nadine and Haven

 Expecting # 6!

Ahh, the memories I have with Justin.  When we were kids, we were absolutely inseperable!

 Who knows. :)

 Little Carson loved my hat.
 Joce with McKenzie

 Ladies' tea party; Aunt Cherie reads some recipes

 Delicious homemade Feta
Four generations together, what a blessing!

   We  had a wonderful time and it was over far too soon.  I really hope we continue to get together so Jocelyn can learn to know her Maust side even better.  For those that weren't there, we missed you!  Family is such a wonderful thing, I hope I never take it for granted.

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  1. is the next stop Iowa, yet?

  2. Yes indeed, Iowa's up next.:)

  3. Shelley the only thing that has changed about caving is that your an amazing mama who loves her lil daughter, and is a lil more careful now!!!


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