This past week we got news that my Opa was not doing so well.  My dad and I decided to drive down to Kerrville, Texas to spend a few a days with him and his beautiful wife (my step-grandmother..?).  Another reason I am so grateful for my job, is the ability to pick up and go.

My family and I have been driving down to Texas ever since I was young.  Even before we moved to Albuquerque in 1997, my parents said they'd make the 24hr haul with four kids and a big van all the way from LA.  All of the sites and sounds of this trip used to be routine to me.  As a child you feel like this part of your life is going to last forever.

My grandparents have a beautiful home up in the "Hill Country" of Texas.  Their town is about an hour outside of San Antonio, and lays against the Guadeloupe River.  15 years ago or so they decided to build a small edition to their home for guests-- to which we called the Casita.  I remember I'd be so excited to stay in the Casita.  It's a small little house about 50 yards away from the main house with a small kitchen, bed, patio, and bathroom.  It had, and still has, a distinct smell to it that'll forever remind me of that time of my life.

I remember waking up in the morning and heading over to the big house.  My Oma, Opa and other 'adults' would be sitting at the kitchen table drinking coffee, reading the newspapers, and talking.  Usually my dad or uncles would be outside on the bbq grilling up the fresh sausages from the local shop, Bernard's.  Those are the mornings when everyone was there that I wish could have lasted forever.

My Opa would let me go out and feed the deer in the morning.  It was my favorite thing in the entire world to do.  That house would get 10, 15, 20 deer at some points.  Some times throughout the year mom's would come up with their 'bambi's'.  My Opa would teach us about the different bucks and their racks.  We even got a few regulars over the years... one of which we called 'scarback' due to a scar he had on his side.  Later, I passed the deer feeding duty on to my littlest cousin Jamey.

Growing up, change, and endings are so incredibly difficult.  

At least we have photographs.

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