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Summer Fun?

By:  Donna Martin

“Children’s children are a crown to the aged, and parents are the pride of their children.” Proverbs 17:6

As a former teacher, I love summer.  I still have a hard time focusing on the work that has to be done in our office when I hear the locust chirping lazily outside my window.  Summer is a time for fun.  Fun at the beach or pool, fun on family vacations, fun sleeping late and staying up past bedtime, fun on picnics and grilling outside, fun eating homemade ice cream, fun gathering fresh vegetables from the garden, fun eating watermelon with your hands, fun at family reunions.  What??? Fun at family reunions?  Yes, fun at family reunions. 

Many families schedule family reunions during the summer months when it is easier for family members to take off and get together.  I remember family reunions every summer in the city park when I was a little girl.  There was always plenty of delicious food and cousins whom I had not seen in months and of course, my grandmother and her brothers and sisters.  The park was filled with lots of laughter and love as the family reunited and new family members were welcomed and introduced.  After Mike and I married we attended his family reunions in August.  Since his mother was from a family of 16 kids, the reunion was huge.  Mike couldn’t even remember all of the names of his distant relatives.  I wondered if some of the people there were just strangers who came in off the street for a free meal.

At times it was a lot of trouble to take the effort to get to a family reunion.  There were times when I really would have rather been somewhere else (especially the time that I was cornered by the infamous Uncle Frank who talked my ear off for at least an hour.  I thought it was strange that everyone seemed to disappear once he started talking.) But I went with Mike to his reunion because I knew it was important to him and to his mother for us to make this yearly connection with his distant relatives.  And Mike returned the favor by attending my family functions.  Those are just the kind of things you do for someone you love.

As I have grown older and become a grandmother, I more clearly understand the importance of these family times.  As the proverbs states our grandchildren are our crowns – our treasures, and as we grow older we hope that our children are proud of us.  I know that I am proud of my parents and of Mike’s parents for the sacrifices they made and the values they instilled in each of us.  I am grateful for the Christian legacy that they passed down to us and to our children. 

It would be so nice if I could hear my grandmother’s sweet laughter again.  It would be such a blessing if I could sit and sip iced tea with my mother.  I would love to hear the deep voice of my father-in-law singing those old hymns, and watch my mother-in-law laugh with my children.  But those moments are gone forever.  Luckily, I still have my dad and I cherish each moment that we have together.  In fact, I am looking forward to the annual “Bomar Girl Get-Together” in August when my sisters and our families can spend time with our dad.  As the years pass I realize how important family reunions are. 

As tidbit #202 states, “Make an effort to get to know your spouse’s family and extended family by talking and visiting with them when attending family occasions.” (from 366 Tidbits We Have Learned in 14610 Days of Marriage).  Attending family reunions, weddings, birthday, graduations, etc. with a good attitude is a way of expressing your love to your spouse.  It is also a way to teach your children to honor your parents and the value of family.

The Martins currently present “Happy Together” marriages seminars for churches and organizations.  To schedule a seminar call Michael at 940-735-1515. They also publish a weekly “Happy Together” Blog about family and marriage issues.  You can order copies of their new books Dancing With Death and 366 Tidbits We Have Learned in 14,610 Days of Marriage, read, and subscribe to their “Happy Together” Blog by logging onto the Martin’s website at

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Reader Comments (1)

I would highly recommend reading the blogs Donna has written of late. They have good insight to how important your family can be. Their books they have written also would be good to read ... there is much to learn from their experiences as a child, parent and grandparent. I too became a victim of Uncle Frank but thoroughly enjoyed his wisdom he took time to share and share he did (ha). As our families grew up together we began to understand the saying that we shared with literally thousands in our concerts, revivals and seminars we conducted through the years. The saying is special because it is true ...'Families are Forever!' Thanks Mike and Donna for sharing your wisdom with us even though I was there for a lot of them (ha). God bless you in this ministry.

June 24, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKenny Phelps

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