Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Fourteen years ago I came home to North Carolina after an 18-month mission to the Colorado Denver North Mission. My youngest brother, Aaron, was 5 years-old at the time. Look how cute he is in this picture (bonus that everyone else looks so rough - sorry guys):

He didn't remember me much even though I'd spent the time I had between semesters at Ricks College taking him to the park, Talkin' Bell (Taco Bell), drawing trains in the driveway with chalk, playing hide-and-seek with him and Allyn (remember when Allyn hid on top of the fridge like Endora from Bewitched and Aaron didn't see her, but I was laughing so hard I almost died?). When I got home I was just another girl in the house to little Aaron. But, there was something... I'd sent him a sweatshirt with a map of Colorado on it for Christmas in 1995. Once we got home from the airport I sat in the living room showing everyone pictures from my mission and telling stories. (Mom pointed to a picture of Brian and said, "Who is THAT?!" It probably wasn't the picture I put in here, but this one makes me laugh. That elder had no idea what he was doing with a barbeque. Look at Brian supervising like a pro. Brian's the one on the far right holding a can of Sprite. Not the Dwight Shrute look-alike in the background holding a can of Sprite.) Aaron appeared in the doorway (it was late June in North Carolina, btw) wearing his Colorado sweatshirt. I like to think he loved me, but he didn't know why. He also took my word for it that he had to give me a hug every day. I'd been home for a few weeks and hadn't seen him one day. It was very late one night when he knocked on my door and said, "Nini, you haven't given me a hug today." Sure he was probably trying to avoid going to bed, but little Aaron lives on in my mind as the sweetest little boy ever. (Then he became a teenager and... meh.)

Aaron is going on a mission himself in a few weeks. We went to watch him speak in Church last Sunday. He was well-spoken, funny, intelligent, full of a great spirit. It wouldn't take much to make me proud of him, but it was still nice that he blew me away. :)

Makenzie, Rob, Aaron, and Me on Mom and Dad's porch after church.

Ladies in the kitchen - Rhonda, Mom, Aunt Julie, Aunt Candace.

The Grandpas - Curtis and Lloyd.

Delicious Baby Claire in her Auntie Claire's arms.

My sweet husband helping my sweet Grandpa. Love feelings.

Aaron and his friend, Kade (check his pocket square) showing off the traditional "farewell" food.


allyn said...

tear jerker. i wish i had been there. you guys look so sweet on the porch.
mom totally wins the biggest boobs award in that picture. especially standing next to aunt julie. and thanks for that horrid picture of me right at first. nice.

Nicole said...

I said I was sorry! It's not that bad. (I want to point out to Mom that Allyn was the one who said it was a boobs contest, not me.)

Allison and Noah Riley said...

It seems so strange to have a Lee kids picturet that only features four people! You all look great in the pic on the porch - those are some beautiful ladies.

Congrats to Aaron! We're excited to hear about his adventures on the mish.

And oh, that picture makes me miss my cute mom - even if she didn't win the contest :).

Mom said...

GRANDPA would win the boob contest standing next to Aunt Julie and Aunt Candace!
Thanks for such a sweet post, Nicole. Love feelings for all of you.:)

melissa said...

True. That's not much of a contest. I think Robby in the first picture could also beat Aunts Julie and Candace.

Sweet Aaron. 'Member when the lady at the Pepperidge Farms outlet told me my brother had a sweet spirit and was going to be a great missionary? Weird but nice. Really, really wish I could have been there.

Aaron said...

It was a lovely blog post Nini, thank you so much.

But for future reference, these 5 comments are EXACTLY WHY I DON'T READ THE BLOGS, EVER!!! MOM, STOP ASKING ME IF I'VE READ THE BLOGS!

Thank you for your time.

Ashley said...

I'm so happy for Aaron's outburst, or I wouldn't have gone back and read the comments. And I'm still laughing.

I heard he did so great (Aaron, if you're still reading, I heard you did so great!)

Nicole said...

I'm the winner! Aaron read my blog! I'm also the loser for having so many boob comments. What is wrong with you people?

Jess said...

I am totally telling Candy on you guys... :) A nice post, Nicole. Best of luck to Aaron on his mission.

Jen said...

I was thinkin' it but I didn't SAY it (Allyn)
Oh man I'm laughing so hard

Mr and Mrs C said...

Nicole, your family is hil-ar-ious! Love feelings for all of you, even though I only know you...good luck to your bro, I'm sure you were a great example!

Claire said...

So funny, I'm gonna die! Melissa I nearly choked on my food when you mentioned my husband. You made me cry I laughed so hard.