yep, only 10 days until the big Germany/Paris trip.
Just like last year with my trip to Ireland, the closer it gets the less real it seems.
The past week my Grandpa from Oregon has been in town visiting. Its been a good visit. Wednesday night we went to the Pub for a pint, some shepards pie and bangers and mash. It was fun, he got to meet some of my friends and understands why I like to hang out there. Then Friday night we had dinner at my cousins other grandparents house, and then Saturday night I hosted a big family dinner at my moms house. I made a great chicken and pasta dish. I'd seen two recipes online recently that I liked, but of course I couldn't find them when I needed them. So, I did the next best thing and threw together what I could remember from the two. I started out by cooking bacon, onion, garlic, and chicken in a sauce pan, then removed all of that and used the remaining bacon grease to make a roux, and thinned it out with some milk, marsala wine, and threw in a bunch of mozzarella cheese. Definitely not the healthiest dish, but damn it was good. To add some bit of nutrition to it, when I was cooking the pasta I tossed in some broccoli florets for the last minute or so.
Since he leaves early Monday morning, we got together for a family brunch this morning in Folsom and I was able to get some pictures of the family together. Looking at these photos this afternoon it struck me that he is my last surviving grandfather. Even though I'm sure that we'll have countless opportunities for more photos like this, I'm going to treasure these photos forever. The last few years have been very hard for him, starting with my grandmother being diagnosed with lung cancer and then watching him care for her while she was sick, and seeing how sad he was during those 2 years, and how devastated he was when she passed away last year, its so good to see him smiling like this again, and looking genuinely happy.
Me and Grandpa
Me, Grandpa, and my little brother, Ryan
Ryan, me, Dad, Grandpa