Monday, September 5, 2011

Labor Day Weekend, Sweet Emotions

Had a Labor Day family picnic with a sleeping Chase, plus a Car Show in Sylvania. I think it's the "Sweet Emotions" that get to you at these times. At the dinner it was 4 generations together. At the car show: an old Chevy named "Sweet Emotions" and a 1960s Oldsmobile that reminded me of my Dad. And for Elissa? A Challenger, what else!

We had a family picnic for Labor Day weekend; we moved it from Case de Mama to Michelle’s because she has a big yard and cool house, while my backyard is in full sun all day, and the weather was hot and muggy. My grandsons, cousins Tony and Josh, put up the new grill I bought, and got a good fire going. They were our chefs. Barbecued turkey sausage, hotdogs and pork chops with lots of sauce, and all the trimmings to top them off. We invited my neighbor Judi, another babushka, to join us. We were four generations! We spent lots of time watching baby Chase, who wouldn’t wake up from a deep sleep no matter how many of us held him, how loudly we talked, or how boisterous we were. The little cutie slept through the whole thing. Loud noises, music, constant chatter, endless conversation, the banging of pots and pans. While Chase slept, we ate, complimented the chefs, and enjoyed Michelle’s yummy pudding and whipped cream dessert, which she assured us was low-calorie. This family togetherness is good for the soul, but it’s not so good for my waistline. As we gave blessings, I couldn’t help but recall some fantastic "shashlik" (шашлык) dinners in Ukraine, one of the best ever when I was in Slavsky in the Carpathian mountains with Olga and Tonya.

On Monday night, it was just my daughter Elissa and me. The weather had cooled way down overnight; it felt like the first day of Fall. We had dinner, chatted, counted our blessings, then went to a car show. Yep, a car show. It’s what Elissa loves to do these days. She’s in love with cars, especially Challengers, which I unfortunately have a hard time distinquishing from any other cars. But Elissa got her car fix, and I got to spend time with Elissa and have a bit of an adventure. I must admit these cars--old, antique, and race cars--are meticulously preserved and look fantastic. They gleam, beam, and scream. They carry you back to old times with "sweet emotions," like seeing a 60's Oldsmobile convertible did for me, my Dad's favorite car.

How grateful I am to share a Labor Day weekend with my family, to gather four generations, to commemorate and remember, to experience something special with Elissa. So summer turns to Fall and the seasons change again, and we change and grow with them. Sweet Emotions.

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