thoughts on family

I love this photo because it captures a typical scene involving my family so well. In this moment we all had somewhere to be. In fact, we were already late. Yet everyone is standing around with their coffee, mom and my sister passively listening to Nathan, distracted from the deadline mostly by things that can wait. Things move slowly in my family. This may annoy you, assuming you are an American, but sometimes I wonder if we were really meant to live in Latin America.

 Growing up, three hour long dinners were not unusual. I attribute my multi-tasking abilities to these meals….Political discussions (during which two of us felt obligated play “devil’s advocate”) were peppered with rapid exchanges in broken French or Spanish, which were often followed by light-hearted, highly embellished anecdotes about my brother’s day. Engaging conversation involving the entire family, good meals and music were staples in our household. We regularly had people over for coffee on the back porch, bonfires in the backyard and cookouts following pickup soccer games in the summer. All of which were spontaneous–the way such events should be.

Sometimes I catch myself daydreaming about plopping down on the couch in the Raleigh house with a book, my dad’s latest musical find streaming in the background, windows open and of course, a pot of freshly brewed coffee waiting to be poured into the Bybee mugs. How fortunate I am to have such good associations with my childhood home and the people in it.  I hope develop a home with a similar energy. Not too fast-paced or stressful, full of laughter, healthy discussion and debate, and an understanding that this way of life is to be shared with others. 

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