“You can kiss your family and friends goodbye and put miles between you, but at the same time you carry them with you in your heart, your mind, your stomach, because you do not just live in a world but a world lives in you.”― Frederick Buechner
I love this quote because it so full of truth. For 28 of my 50 years I have lived across the country from the majority of my family; but they have remained present, in my heart, prayers, and DNA. Which is why when we do have opportunity to see each other, it is always a joy.
Wesley is one of my favorite nephews (I have several), and his wife Evy equally so. Wesley chose well when he married her—she is beautiful, funny, smart, an exceptional mother, and more importantly, loves the Lord with all her heart. Bryana and Caleb are Wes and Evy’s babies, my grand niece and nephew who are also smart, funny, and a delight to be around.
So I was thrilled when they decided to vacation in Southern California for a second year in a row! Evy has a ton of relatives in Anaheim and the Inland Empire, so the bulk of their time is spent with them; but I am grateful they always make time for Auntie Jennifer. They flew in from Chicago O’Hare to LAX on Saturday morning, and after collecting their luggage and obtaining a rental car, they drove to my house. We piled into my car and had lunch at In-N-Out at the Burbank Town Center. After we got our Double-Double-animal-style grub on, we went to the mall so that Wesley could buy a cap from Lids, and also ended up at Claire’s where Bryana got to buy some items for her girly-girl supply.
Wes and Evy surprised me with an impromptu pedicure for my birthday, and the kids had a great time riding animals around the mall.
We continued the afternoon with a driving tour of Burbank, stopping at Walt Disney Studios to see the 7 Dwarves building, and the sound stages of the Warner Bros. main lot. Our last stop was Universal Citywalk, a quintessential L.A. hangout spot with lots of music and interactive delights that captured the rapt attention of five-year-old Caleb.