Saturday, June 13, 2009

Christa and Brandon's Big Day!

When Christa set out for work on Friday, little did she know what was in store. As soon as she left, Kristen and I sprang into action, and began cooking for a surprise engagement party to be held later that evening. Decorations came flying out from hidden places, as we scurried about all day getting things ready. Paula, Brandon's mom, came over and helped, and together we all began creating a masquerade themed party that Christa would never forget.

Brandon took Christa to an ice rink, where he rented out the entire rink. When Christa wondered why no one was skating, he just said because it was June and it's not too busy, and she thought that was a reasonable explanation so still didn't have a clue! Then he played a special song he wrote for her that he had pre-setup at the rink. She was so surprised, because he had been writing the song for some time.

When Brandon got down on one knee in the middle of the rink, though, Christa knew this was not just an ordinary day.

Brandon called me in from the parking lot, where I was waiting with camera in hand. After snapping a few pictures, I went back to the party, and Christa & Brandon went to Mike's house to get ready for the party.

We had an amazing party, with awesome tributes to Christa and Brandon given throughout the evening. An incredible menu and theme (masquerade), with Brandon's and Christa's family all there...

What an amazing night to remember!

To see ALL the pictures, click here

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Beautiful Almost Summer Day!

Today was such a great day! Started off just hanging around with Andrew (who spent the night after Danny's Wings party last night) and Bethany. Then went on an apx. 20-mile bike ride with Julie --

Did a bunch of chores, then off to grocery shop. When I came home, everyone was there hanging out, and Jesse was over getting his haircut. Made a quick dinner, and even Gary showed up!

Now just hanging around with Bethany & Christa.

Love having a houseful of wonderful people to hang around with! I am soaking up every minute!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

30th Carollo-Girgenti Family Picnic

It was an amazing day, start to finish (actually even BEFORE the start!). BEFORE the start, the guys on our "team" all drove to Harsen's Friday night to get everything ready for the big "PAJAMA party" (that was Mike Picc, Gary, Stephen & Michael). Of course, they always end up having their own party!

Then first thing Saturday morning, up and attem to get to the picnic as early as possible. It was weird for me to be driving my vette alone, but I happenstanced upon Laurie with Mikey & Rachel driving alongside me and I grabbed Rachel for my ride too!

Breakfast was cinnamon roll French toast, fruit, Laurie's homemade granola, Nina's incredible Martha Stewart Coffee-cupcakes, eggs, toast, and cereal. Every family had a "photo opportunity" for our scrapbook. We had a contest for the best outfit fitting the theme.

Throughout the day there was awesome friendship, fellowship, and fun. We had a DVD of THIRTY YEARS of memory videos playing at two places throughout the day (thanks to Robert & his EXCELLENT editing skills!) The DVD was amazing, and we were able to relive some epoch moments with five sets of grandparents who are no longer with us, and with Mr. Carollo -- hearing his voice and seeing him putting his heart into our picnic boostered our coming together even more...

We missed several people who couldn't be there because of illness or distance, and it made us realize how precious each time we get together really is...

We played some fun games within the theme: volleyball with a balloon and sheet and teams; sleeping bag relay races; and a dessert contest.

Special guest appearance with Robin and Michelle bringing Bryson from Florida -- everyone was thrilled to meet him! And when Renee and Brandon drove from Chicago, it was such a special surprise to see them!

Dinner was amazing: mahi-mahi (caught by the men who do the annual fishing trip!), filets, portabella mushrooms grilled, sweet and regular potato bar, four choices of incredible salads, and on and on...

It was a pretty amazing day. I have received texts already thanking our group for an amazing day (how special). It was a day full of memories -- memories that will last a lifetime and go in the family album and in our hearts to make us realize that we have something so very very special: families that have been with each other from infancy, involved in our families' good times and bad, caring for each others' children and supporting each other throughout LIFETIMES.

Carollo and Girgenti families!!!! To order pictures, add your own or comment, go to: Family Picnic Pics on Shutterfly

For more pictures see: Family Pictures 1

and see: Family Pictures 2