No matter what kind of day you’re having, at the end of that day, you can usually rely on your family to comfort you, listen to you, help you, calm you, sympathize with you and, of course, love you.
Families can be anything from easygoing to complicated. I’m guessing there are more complicated families than the sweet families we’ve seen on TV over the decades.
Even within immediate families: mother, father, brothers and sisters, there can be many dimensions. How many times have you seen siblings so different from each other?
In other words, there is no such thing as a perfect family.
My favorite gatherings for family are reunions, birthdays, anniversaries, weddings and special occasions like graduations. Another family gathering would be the loss of a family member. Even at that, when family gets together under a stressful situation, it’s still comforting.
Last week, my sister-in-law’s mom passed away at the age of 90. It’s a sad occasion for sure but, when members of the family start to gather from all parts of the country, it’s such a warm and welcome feeling.
I have a very small family and, even though this occasion was a somber one, I looked forward to visiting with my sisters-in-law and brother’s three children and grandchildren.
My niece and two nephews live out of state and reasons for them to come back to visit in PA are becoming few and far between. Now that the last of their grandparents has passed away, it will be a rare occasion when I see them again.
That’s very sad.
I never had this issue growing up because my family didn’t leave the area. My grandparents, uncles and aunts and cousins all stayed in the area. Family gatherings were frequent and holidays were a blast.
My brother was actually one of the first ones in the family to leave and never come back. On a few occasions,he moved back to the area, only to leave once more.
It seems the generations before mine stayed close to home. My generation started to venture away and the next generation, well, it’s difficult to keep them here.
Part of that reason is that more and more children have had the option to go away to college. Once away and enjoying the experience of being in another area only makes it easier not to return to NEPA.
Over the last 50 years or so, all you heard from people would be, “There’s nothing here.” That may have been true at one point, but honestly, there is more to do and experience in NEPA than ever before.
I had a discussion with my nephew who lives in Texas with his wife and two children about what this area has to offer. He and his family may have a chance to relocate to the Corning, NY area for work. He and his Texas-born wife are looking forward to the possible move.
It would be fun if they moved closer to home. I barely know my nephew’s wife and I met their son, my great-nephew, just once. This past week, I met my nephew’s soon-to-be 2-year-old daughter, my great-niece, for the first time.
I’m all about family moving close to home; it sure would make life easier when it comes to gathering for good times and bad.
Bring it on.
How hot will it get?
This heat wave is in my wheelhouse. I love it! The Weather Channel is calling for nine days of 90-plus temperatures. The last long stretch of 90-plus weather was in 2016.
There are many who would disagree and love to see those cold winter temps again. When we’re in the middle of those cold temps, I’m thinking and wishing for this weather.
The forecasters are promising a long string of 90-degree days; the longest stretch of heat in a very long time. Just remember to hydrate and, for the elderly and pets, keep cool and stay indoors as much as possible.
Athletes, you must hydrate as well, and limit sports play during this time. For as much as I love this weather, you have to be smart about it. We don’t get this kind of heat very often or for as long.
It’s kind of nice having this heat during the Fourth of July holiday. I’ve always associated summer heat with Independence Day.
Speaking of family, I bet there will be a lot of family backyard cookouts on Wednesday. It’s a shame the holiday falls in the middle of the week instead of a Monday or Tuesday or Thursday or Friday for a three or four-day weekend.
We’ve suffered long enough with a wet, rainy spring and we owe it to ourselves to enjoy true summer weather.
I hope your family has a great holiday this Fourth of July.
Quote of the week
“Death is not evil, for it frees man from all ills and takes away his desires, along with desire’s rewards. Old age is the supreme evil for it deprives man of all pleasures while allowing his appetites to remain, and it brings with it every possible sorrow. Yet men fear death and desires old age.” – Giacomo Leopardi, Italian philosopher
Thought of the week
“Study as if you were going to live forever; live as if you were going to die tomorrow.” – Maria Mitchell, American astronomer
“Physics is imagination in a straight jacket.” – John Moffat, Scottish physicist