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The Family Reunion To Beat ALL Family Reunions
One day you realize that youre looking back, more than youre looking forward and you recognize that youre getting older and that time, as it does for all of us, is moving faster than we want it to.
It must be time to re-connect, rekindle, re-visit family.
We all go our separate ways. Some, more than others. When we were younger, our lives were busy with our own kids and Saturday sports and dance recitals and birthday parties. As we grew older, we worked harder to build a career and a future for our later years. We spent our best years working toward those later years and woke up one day only to realize that those “later” years were here and all we really wanted were those early years. (human beings are never happy it seems!)
As we get older, we get nostalgic and we yearn for a simpler time when life seemed infinitely easier. We think back to a time when there was nothing more important than which game we were going to play with the kids in the neighborhood or racing inside to eat dinner so that we could race back outside to hangout with our friends. We remember picnics with family and church festivals and the Christmas program at St. Anthony's and holidays where there were so many people you almost couldnt breathe. We remember traditions carried down thru generations and we remember knowing that we belonged to something great and full of love and it made us happy.
Families are the strength of all people. The ties might be stretched and strained, but they are never truly broken. We share roots and our ancestors. We share traditions. We share memories. We are connected thru an invisible bond which crosses over time and distance.
Those people, our great grandparents and grandparents who came to this country from Lebanon, were proud and worked hard. They wanted to make a better life for themselves and their children and grandchildren. Looking back, I think they accomplished that. Their work ethic was simple because where they came from, life WAS simple and they passed that down thru the generations.
And so today is about reconnecting, remembering and reminiscing. But its more than that. As each generation continues, we lose something from the past, so it is up to us, the last generation that remembers the bottoms and the old ways, to refresh and instill in the minds of our children and grandchildren, what was so special about those days, where they come from and who came before them and to instill in them pride in their heritage.
It is also about honoring those people who came from the old country to build lives in a new country. Its about honoring our parents who brought us all together. They are the people who made sure we knew each other as children and despite the ensuing years, that IS what counts. With all of their faults and frailties, our parents were good people who worked hard, played even harder, and loved every one of us. The legacy that Sam and Amelia gave to their children, Salemie, John and Ray, has been passed down and is still alive. I know that it is. I heard it in each of your voices as I spoke to you on the phone or read it in your words on Facebook or emails. It is that memory that we are celebrating today.
I welcome all of you into our home, today, July 12th 2014 and only wish that there were some magical way that we could have all of them here with us to celebrate the lives of the Simon and Raymond families.