January 2nd, 2015

2956

58002--Dinner with the girls

For the first time in a long time, I spent Christmas with Arlina's family. Malida has always been a little reluctant--kind of stepping into the shadow of a ghost. Last year though, when we called to wish them all a Merry Christmas, Malida spontaneously told Nanay that we would be there the next year, and so we were. It was a lot of fun, and good to see everyone.

christmas 2014
Here is the family shot. Everyone is so big now. I grew a mustache for Movember, and it is pretty much all white, which makes me look a lot like my grandpa.

All the girls were there, and it was the first time I had seen them all together in close to 10 years. We made arrangements to meet for dinner later in the week.

girls

If you read my old journal, you will remember them as the girls who were always at our house. They generally spent the summers with us, and we would go out on adventures.

girls and Arlina

When Arlina was sick, the older girls spent a lot of time helping me take care of her. The oldest was about 14 when Arlina died.

us

Anyway, I had a purpose for taking them to dinner, beyond just taking them for dinner. Ten years ago, a few days before she died, Arlina told me she wanted her rings to go to the girls. We pulled them out and she decided who would get which one. She asked me to wait until they were grown up.

I decided this was the time. I wrapped up the rings and gave them to the girls after dinner. I told them where each ring came from, and what it meant to their aunt. It was a lovely moment, and not one of us took pictures.

I did take a picture of them at Christmas, though. Want to see what they look like all grown up?

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