We have had an amazing Fourth of July weekend here in Virginia at Bristol Mines Farm. I have heard about what a great place "the farm" is for many years, but this is the first opportunity that I have had to visit it. This farm is owned by my Uncle Tom's family. Tom was my mother's brother who lived in the Washington D.C. area after leaving Douglas in the 1930's. He purchased it in the early 1970's. His children have kept the farm and his son, Tommy, and Tommy's wife, Michelle, hosted a family reunion.
The farm is 203 acres in the northern Virginia countryside, which is absolutely beautiful!! It overlooks the Rappahannock River. Kerri, Cameron, and Kayla went swimming and kayaking in the river. The kids also went fishing and Cameron caught a large mouth bass and a blue gill.
Our hotel is in Colonial Beach, about 15 minutes from the farm. We are right on the shore of the Potomac River and right where it feeds into Chesapeake Bay. Last night Pat, Kerri, and I walked down the beach and went into a restaurant/casino. As soon as we walked into the building, there was a sign that said "Welcome to Maryland." Apparently, as soon as you go into the river area, it is Maryland, not Virginia!
There are two pairs of bald eagles nesting on a pole in front of the hotel. It has been magnificent and so symbolic to see these graceful birds flying around. There are also several eagles down by the river at the farm.
It has been so fun to visit with our east coast cousins as we don't get to see them as often as all of the ones on the west coast. It has also been great to meet their cousins on their mom's side of the family. I have heard about many of them over the years, but had never met them.
Tonight we had our own fireworks show at the farm!! It was AMAZING!!!! The guys had a full "arsenal" of fireworks that they set off. It was as good as any fireworks show I have seen and something that could never be done in Arizona.
One of my favorite memories of this weekend is going to be when one of the little girl cousins went up to Tommy and asked when they could start playing "craps." He replied that they could play anytime they wanted to!!! Cameron is now an expert at playing craps. He had won quite a bit of money when it was time to leave tonight and Kerri returned it to the little kids!!
This weekend has been a completely different experience for all of us and I feel so fortunate to have been able to be a part of the reunion. Teresa has a wonderful time visiting with everyone. She is in her glory when she is surrounded by family!!
Tomorrow we will be dropping her off at one of the Scott cousin's houses in Maryland and then try to see some more of Washington D.C. We are hoping to visit a couple of the different Smithsonian Museums late tomorrow and Monday before heading back to Arizona on Tuesday.
It has been a great weekend. Thanks to Tommy and Michelle, our Aunt Mary, Ellen, Nick, Ann, Joe, Judy, Neil, Lisa, and everyone else who made it possible. Cameron will have some incredible memories of this weekend and all that he has experienced that is so different from Arizona!!