We pretty much stuck out like a sore thumb and my griping of Iowa winters and size didn't help us blend any better. Despite my complaining, people welcomed us with open arms and kindness. Friendships grew and we began calling Des Moines 'home'.
Then I started working at AFC (America's Family Coaches) and a sweet little thing named Sarah befriended me. She and her husband Curtis showed us hospitality and welcomed us into their family and tight knit circle of college friends. We were welcomed to backyard barbeques, helped each other remodel homes, watched our families expand and kept up a tradition we've come to adore the last 4 or 5 years...Christmas Brunch.
Every year just before Christmas we gather together to share a meal, play games and let our kiddos run around. We cherish this every year. No gifts are exchanged, it's just simple fellowship at its finest.
This year we hosted the brunch and spent 4 hours of fun, food, chatter, laughter and a special storytime for the kiddos led by motorcycle man Ryan. Like all the years past, when time came to say our goodbyes, none of us wanted it to end.
Here are a few pictures of the gang:
Ryan Faircloth, Nora Faircloth, Sarah Carroll, Curtis Carroll
Front row: Dan Gin, Me, the hubby
Kiddos: Eva, Maggie, Miriam and James...not pictured is Ethan...he was having a meltdown.
Ryan reading the kids a story...with inflection! We were impressed with this unknown talent!
I simply can't brag enough about our friends. They are sweet, genuine, funny and would do anything for you. If I go on, my screen will get blurry from tears. We are blessed to have them in our lives and they, along with our other sweet Iowa friends and church family, are why we can say, Des Moines is our home. It's official...we're Iwanians!