Embellished by "us four little kids": Aaron, Bruce, Di, Kit
(after Dave & Peg had graduated and gotten married)
Family is just accident. . . .
They don't mean to get on your nerves.
They don't even mean to be your family, they just are.
Marsha Norman (b. 1947)
American playwright, screenwriter, novelist
Pulitzer Prize for Drama, 1983
"Our lives are filled with people who provoke us,
especially people we love.
They help us figure out our own shit
and why we are here.
And why are we here again? . . .
We don't know. . . .
We only sort of know. . . .
To live, love, help -- to decorate.
To sweep our huts and find some food."
from Grace (Eventually) Thoughts on Faith, 135
by Anne Lamott (b. 1954)
American writer and progressive political activist
And, of course, there's always Brian Andreas to capture the essence of the occasion. He is clearly in agreement with Lamott about the food:
"There are things you do because they feel right
& they may make no sense
& they may make no money
& it may be the real reason we are here:
to love each other
& to eat each other's cooking
& say it was good."
And full of humorous advice for the long weekend:
"We stood out on the porch before we went inside
& she told me her secret.
Pretend you're just visiting, she said.
That way you'll forget that they're family."
Rules for a successful holiday:
1. Get together with the family
2. Relive old times
3. Get out before it blows
Brian Andreas (b. 1956)
American writer, painter, sculptor
Designer of StoryPeople
P.S. Just for the record, I actually wish I saw more of my family, not less! By the way, Aaron and I were wondering about his lips & Di's teeth in the family portrait above! How did we come up with those features? All I can think of is that maybe it was around Halloween & they were wearing those wax lips & fangs that we used to buy! Ha!
P.P.S. It's true that some of the above passages appeared on this blog last year (June 2009 and November 2009), but I think they are solid enough for a repeat -- and just so appropriate for Thanksgiving that I couldn't resist posting them again this weekend.