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fam·i·ly ˈfam(ə)lē

I remember family gatherings (in lieu of funerals) as a time of fellowship with those you haven't seen in quite a while. There was no worry of who was going to sleep where, no mention of hotels. Everyone crashed on someone's floor. The designated person to barbecue was on deck, ready with the mopping brush, lemon, orange juice,  and gin. The outfits were in place with backups for the little ones. This was the time to get matching Summer outfits. The boys dressed alike and so did the girls. Remember the jelly sandals? The girl's hair was braided tight. As kids we didn't care about the logistics nor details. We were ready to see family, eat, run around, play in the plastic pool, drink as many sodas as we could, sneak beers from the cooler, eat watermelon, and go to the creek. Those were the days. 

Moments such as these are rare nowadays. The nostalgia lingers but there's hardly any cooperation to rekindle those bygone days. There's often mention of "Oh, family needs to stick together more." "We need to stick together." "We need to get together." "We need to have a family reunion." All this being said by the main people who cause the drama and discord amongst others. Therefore, leading key family members to not desire the association of a family gathering, a 'why bother' attitude. 

Many stick to themselves or resolve to creating their own immediate family traditions. And this is okay, but every now and then, family as a whole need to come together if not for a day. They need to obtain visuals of who their family truly is. Not "play cousins" or those "like a father",  or "uncle" so and so, but to see who their family really is. History needs to be revealed, no matter the consequence. Stories need to be told, no matter the pain. Families need to stand as family. 

What are your family gathering memories? How do you gather today?

Papa Smurf & grandkids

Gramma & grandkids

Siblings, minus 1

Mama & grandkids

Dad, Doonie, & Mr. B.

Aunt & Uncle


  1. I admit after this post, I am now in a place of being on the other end of the cohesive familial spectrum; sad but true. I'm okay with it, too.

    1. I have many fond childhood memories of get togethers like what you mention, and yes, times have surely changed. I admit to being one that either has little/no time or little/no energy. Where is the balance?


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