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This weekend made me think of my parents and my wonderful extended family. When my parents were married over fifty years ago, a wonderful event occurred: not only did they become husband and wife, but two families became one. My grandparents lived in the same town, one pair on a hill outside of town and the other two on a quiet residential street in the small village. Each summer my mother, brothers, and I would travel “home” to West Virginia from wherever the Air Force had flung us, and visit our kinfolk. My father would join us later and then the families were complete. We loved being together.

 Those days were marked by picnics, birthday parties, barbeques, reunions, and suppers. Perhaps not so different from how others celebrate the long, sunny days…but ours were extra-special. The difference between my family and other families I know is this – when we were there we did not have to choose between my father’s or mother’s family. Because, when they wed, the two families joined.

 My father’s house on the hill was the site of many a picnic…we would strategically park the cards on the hill overlooking the garden, spread blankets under the apple trees, and lay out bountiful tables full of shared casseroles and baked goods. The most joyful part was it wasn’t just my siblings and the two sets of grandparents roasting marshmallows over the glowing coals. Everyone was included in the festivities – aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends.

 When my parents married, their love wasn’t confined to the two of them. It spread outward, warming those around them and drawing people closer. My grandparents didn’t complain or fight over grandchildren – they didn’t make my parents feel as if they had to choose one over the other. It felt like one big family! 

Now my daughter is engaged. This weekend we spent time with her fiancé’s family at their home in Delmar. They were gracious and welcoming to my husband and me. I felt so comfortable there. My wish is that our two families can blend together…and exponentially expand our love. For the future I want to share laughter and love, graduations and grandchildren. I will consider their family’s traditions and beliefs. I will work diligently to make my son-in-law and his family feel welcomed and loved.

Let the celebrations begin!


( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 10th, 2010 10:54 am (UTC)
And that is the best gift you will ever give Him. Your love and the feeling of belonging to the family and the fact that your friends feel the same way about Him should make YOU feel that wonderful feeling of extended family here in the North!
May. 10th, 2010 09:06 pm (UTC)
It is easy to love Kevin & welcome him to the family since he is a wonderful guy. (And we are so fortunate to have such good friends who envelope us & him with love!)
May. 10th, 2010 12:33 pm (UTC)
What a beautiful wish.

May. 10th, 2010 09:11 pm (UTC)
Thanks, Jo! I really hope I can recreate the circle of love that I was fortunate enough to have surrounding me as I grew.
May. 12th, 2010 01:34 am (UTC)
Congratulations to your daughter and future son-in-law. You're giving them a gift too many people never give, but one that everyone should receive.

What a great way to grow up, too.
Jun. 5th, 2010 05:02 pm (UTC)
Kathy - I was very fortunate in the way I was raised! What is so wonderful is that his parents are as loving toward my daughter as if she were one of their own. We are so fortunate & so blessed!
May. 25th, 2010 03:44 pm (UTC)
I Love You!!!! and yes I'm crying..... U know who I am.....
Jun. 5th, 2010 05:00 pm (UTC)
Re: wow...
Actually, Anonymous Commenter, you could be one of two people I know who 1) Isn't a livejournal blogger and 2) cries over things like wedding...and McDonald's commercials. (I love you both, though!) :-)
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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