Hi all, Erin here. It’s been a long time since I’ve read this. Let me fill in a few details. Brock, Kevin, Roni and George went on to see about Roni’s sister, Emma a few months after they came home. Tracey and I stayed with the family. Everyone agreed that we would be safest there. Of course there was the wedding and I personally think that my new mom and dad wanted to have their honeymoon with no kids tagging along. Now that I’m a wife and mom, I agree they did the right thing.
Mom and dad made it home safe and sound with plenty of good news about Aunt Emma, she even came and visited for awhile and when I was two we all went there and I got to meet my Aunt Gracie. Uncle Kevin fell for her like a ton of bricks and they were married within a year! She had ridden to Aunt Emma’s on a TRICYCLE! Uncle Kevin has been the only one she will ever get into a vehicle with.
Tracey and I did go back to where I was born and found the house still boarded up. I know, we couldn’t believe it either! We found a few things that we decided to keep but we both knew that THIS is home for us now. We planted some rose bushes on the grave of our parents and we both went there for our own honeymoons. It is a great place for a hunting lodge and our dear friend George has set up a business there with his wife and five kids.
Brock and Roni (aka: Mom and Dad); had 8 other kids besides me and Tracey and believe you me, Tracey played the role of eldest (and bossiest) to the hilt. Kevin and Gracie have seven kids of their own but they moved back to Arkansas before they were all born. We had plenty of kids running around the ranch and of course plenty of competition.
One game I remember well was when Mom put our names on these little wooden signs that she made; each kid had one sign with their name on it. Then she put little hangers in the garden and would place a sign on each. The signs said “This piece of our life is tended lovingly and honestly by >insert the kids name<”. Now THAT set off one of the biggest rounds of competition ever! Our parents never had to tell us to weed at all! None of us wanted our names to be in a piece of the garden that was full of weeds!
Time rolled on and we all grew up with our bumps and bruises and there was some mishaps and sad times. Our dear Gramma passed away one bitter winter but she has left all of us a legacy that we refuse to let die. (And personally, I think that my little sister Carrie, has inherited all Gramma’s quirks; she goes around talking to the animals all the time! And has been doing that since she could talk….she even talked to one of the dogs before she ever talked to any of her ‘people’ family!)
Oh yeah, I guess I should tell you about Mike and Michelle Striker. They stayed on the Ranch for a few years, until things got “more normal” and eventually went back and rebuilt and restarted their business and they still make a killer breakfast special that you can get anytime of the day.
Our extended family may be spread out all over the country now, and I think that is a good thing! Gives us good excuses to go traveling! And we do like to travel. Mostly it’s on horseback since cars haven’t really made a comeback yet. We as a country seem to like how we have settled into a more “live with the land” kind of view. We value family and good friends more now and from all I’ve heard, we had lost that in the years before the “event”.
So I’ll leave you now. I hope you and your family has made it through this “rough patch” our country has gone through. I have many hopes for our country and all the people that live here. And ya know what? I think they are all coming true!