Epic Vacation: Day Three

Watkins Glen Vintage Grand Prix is normally in September, but because of paving the track, the races were moved to July. Brian usually takes that weekend each September to go with a bunch of his buddies to watch. This year, I got to be his buddy since I’m such a racing fan (yes, that was laced with sarcasm). So honestly, I wasn’t looking forward to this day and knew it was a day I was giving to my man for the things he loves. I prayed a lot for our day, for my heart to be for Brian and the kids, and that I would choose to enjoy and take interest in what he enjoys, too. Y’all, it wasn’t to bad. In fact, while I didn’t necessarily enjoy watching racing, I thoroughly enjoyed watching Bri and Bear giddy together over engines and cars and speed.

The noise was unbelievable, and I kept asking myself, “I traveled two days from home for this?” But then I’d see my Bear taking picture after picture and ask question after question. He was delighted, and Brian mirrored that delight with each response. We set up our chairs next to the racetrack. Ash immediately curled up with a book (any guesses how many he read while we were on our trip?) and Bella joined her dad and brother at the fence watching. I sat and watched them all and my heart smiled at the joy of my loves.

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After a couple races, we returned to Gimli for lunch and some down time. Bri was so good about planning the week around down time for me. We wandered through Watkins Glen for a while and took in the beauty of the town and Seneca Lake. It was breathtaking. Lakes just don’t grow that large where I’m from. We enjoyed walking together and sharing life for a bit before we returned to the raceway for a few more races.

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Brian’s dream came true and he got to drive a Jaguar XF autocross (500 and some odd horsepower–I’m told this is important to know). *smile* He was a happy man, and my heart was happy just watching him. Because we paced ourselves and much of the day was sitting, it wasn’t a taxing day and gave me some much needed rest.

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We arrived back at Gimli in time to meet up with our dear friend, Kaz (yet another friend from our wedding and a former roommate of Brian’s from college), grill some chops, slice up a pineapple and share life around the campfire. Who would have thought when we were young college kids, fresh and alive with all the future had to offer that we’d have walked through so much suffering in each of our lives? God is faithful. We reminded each other of this as we shared… and His purposes are always, always good.

Kaz knows how to grab the hearts of kids and he won them over immediately as he showed them how to spark wintergreen lifesavers with your teeth at night. Pretty awesome stuff! We played the “once upon a time” game with Kaz, too, and Kaz immediately connected with the boys by infusing his stories with atomic bombs and exploding planets, but don’t worry… there were unicorns and rainbows, too.

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It really was a beautiful day together, even if it wasn’t what I would have chosen. But isn’t that what we are called to do with those we love? We share in their joy even if it isn’t ours? And oh my friends, it was so full… so much joy.

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