Biological Family Thanksmasgiving

Today was one of our favorite days of the year: our Thanksmasgiving with our biological families.

Alex’s parents and sister and niece and nephew came:

And Kirk and Barrett’s mom and baby sister came:

So did their aunt and uncle and cousin:

We even got to meet Barrett’s father’s mother for the first time:

And we talked to Barrett’s father for the first time in prison – he has not seen Barrett since Barrett was ten months old:

So grateful to his mother for doing the hard work to make that happen. It’s a tricky thing, triggers and memories and biological family issues and feelings about it, but it is Barrett’s story, and it is his to work out. Anber also talks to her mother on the phone in prison, and has been pretty direct with her. Kirk, even, at some point, when he is ready, will need his own very serious conversation with Barrett’s father. It’s a tough call, but we would rather they begin working these issues now while we can support them, rather than facing it full on as adults on their own.

Speaking of hard issues, I begged and pleaded, but we were unable to get anyone at all from Mary’s family to come. But, Mary showed them how to string up popcorn:

And Mary was also the boss of ornament making:

The children had their first recital, playing for their families:

Then Nathan led them all in Christmas carols while Mary helped me serve up the meal the children cooked: turkey, volcano potatoes, sweet potatoes, plus an Aunt’s fruit salad and a mom’s green bean casserole, and apple pie.

While they were all in line for their food, they passed the children’s school work lining the hallways:

These were gifts for the families at the end.

Anber and Kyrie’s mother’s twin sister and mother made it just in time at the end:

But the most fun part, so say the children, was the gift exchange! It warms my heart, not because the children got a few gifts, but because all the families have “adopted” all six children as much as we have, so everyone had a few gifts to open – even Mary, who had no family show up at all. They had such fun!

About Emily

I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since 2009. I serve as a Chaplain, and work as a counselor. I got bilateral cochlear implants in 2010, but will always love sign language. I choose books over television, and organics over processed. Nothing is as close to flying as ballroom dancing - except maybe running, when in the solo mood. I would rather be outside than anywhere else, especially at the river riding my bike or kayaking. PhD in Marriage and Family Therapy, and currently doing a post-doc in Jewish Studies and an MDiv in Pastoral Counseling. The best thing about Emily World is that it's always an adventure, even if (not so) grammatically precise. The only thing better than writing is being married to a writer. Nathan Christensen and I were married in the Oklahoma City temple on 13 October 2012, and have since fostered more than eighty-five children. We have adopted the six who stayed, and are totally and completely and helplessly in love with our family. Nathan writes musical theater, including "Broadcast" (a musical history of the radio) and an adaption of Lois Lowry's "The Giver". He served his mission in South Korea, has taught song-writing in New York City public schools, and worked as a theater critic for a Tucson newspaper. This is not an official Web site of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


Biological Family Thanksmasgiving — 1 Comment

  1. Wow what a great testament to the spirit of the season!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Such great pictures you can see the love all those little people have directed at them! I can’t wait to see the amazing things they do !!