Over the years, the picnic has evolved, from barbeque, all the way to Wedding to pizza party and every year it's been a blast.
There's something about being out on the farm at this particular time of year that always gets me.
I don't know if it's fact that the air is so heavy and honey sweet, if it's the nearly deafening sound of the crickets, or if it's watching the night hawks and swallows flitting around at dusk, but something about all of those things takes me right back to my childhood.
One of the best things about this year's party was that some of my Dad's childhood friends made the trek out to spend time out in the country.
My Mom and Dad grew up in Burbank, IL near Chicago's South Side. It was a different time and a different place.
Growing up, my Dad told, and retold so many stories about his group of friends and the times they had together, stories that sound like a movie script or something right out of a book. But isn't that what life is? We all have a story and a cast of characters that fit perfectly into each part.
It was inspiring to watch my Dad, his brother and their friends talk about the old times, laughing at treasured, shared experiences like only people who've known each other their entire lives can, then picking up their guitars and playing into the late night like they did when they were in their 20's.
Life has been stressful for my Dad lately, but it was evident that there's nothing like the band aid of a friend's smile, or wisecrack to bring in a little sigh of relief and memory of simpler times.
|Left to right: Wayne, Gary, my Uncle Frank and My Dad on the right. Such a handsome guy isn't he?!|
There's something about reconnecting with your "roots", whether it be a group of friends, or a place....
In the end of August I released a new pattern called Grassroots.
I'm always inspired by various things, but it's no secret that one of my biggest inspirations is my own youth and the country setting in which I grew up. All of the hot summer days, tearing through the corn fields and woods in my cut off shorts and keds with my long hair, wind whipped into a million tangles.
Grassroots takes it's nature kissed detailing from those dear old days.
Here's another little piece of my "roots".... a guitar tune from two of my all time faves, James Taylor and Carly Simon. My Dad and Mom used to play songs like this for my brother and I at night when we were very small....