In usual fashion, I've meandered my way to this posting. The past year has offered ample desire and opportunity to clean, organize and purge SO MUCH STUFF from our house that I've had the added opportunity to look back at old photos, dredging up memories both good and bad. I've had a lot of fun looking at the photos and seeing how the children grew to become adults. I can't say the same for seeing how the rest of us aged. LOL
Sometime in 1982 my dad bought property on Lake Chatuge in North Georgia, then built a house in 1983 and lived there until he passed away in May of 2010. It was a really quiet lake when the house was built, staying that way for many years (not so quiet anymore but still enjoyable). During the first few summers, my sister and I often drove from Atlanta to the house to swim and enjoy some quiet time with my Dad and his wife. Then, as my brothers, sister, brother-step and step-sister married and had children, Dad started hosting the family for July 4th with a Christmas gathering that usually fell on New Year's weekend. It became tradition. We looked forward to it and I still miss the get-togethers at the lake all these years later.
We have tried to carry on the July 4th and Christmas traditions, albeit not at the lake house. July 4th moved to a state park, settling at Vogel for many years then to my brother's house near Senoia in more recent years. The same brother has hosted most of the Christmas gatherings as well (beginning prior to our father's death), with only one, rainy and soggy Christmas at our home. (Some houses are just better suited to entertaining than others and that's just not our house.) Sometimes we even get a chance to celebrate more than just the holiday itself. In 2017 or 2018, we had two wedding showers at the July 4th gathering. It was probably 2018 as that was between the weddings - one in late July of 2017 and one in October of 2018. In both of those years at least one family member phoned in via FaceTime so she wouldn‘t miss out on everything. As our children (Dad’s grandchildren) have aged, the frequency of the younger generation being away during “reunion” time has increased but technology has aided us all in staying close.
Sadly, 2020 didn't allow us to get together at all. It’s near impossible to coordinate 20-30 folks for a Zoom call. We are all hoping that the traditions will continue in 2021, with or without the flag shirts. We are tentatively scheduled for July 3rd, if all goes as planned. I should probably get those shirts on order as soon as possible.