Today is Memorial Day. In the US, Memorial Day usually falls on a Monday in late May. For a lot of people, that means a three-day weekend and the unofficial beginning of summer. Many people travel or head outdoors to the lake, the mountains, or the beach.
For my family, we typically celebrate close to home, occasionally celebrating with family. Because of the much ballyhooed association with the holiday and cooking outdoors, that means a cookout. Although my husband and I are fairly adventurous when it comes to food, our families are more traditional and serve hamburgers and hotdogs. It has been this way as long as I can remember. I am pretty close, both geographically and relationally with my family. It used to make me feel a little silly, making a big fuss out of a minor holiday. We usually saw each other enough that an over-the-top picnic seemed a bit much. I enjoy hamburgers and hotdogs, but did we need to make such a big deal about it?
As an adult, however, I have found my attitude has changed. Each time we get together should be a celebration. We have lost family members, almost lost family members, and our frequency of gathering has waned. Life keeps moving and we see how fleeting it can be. So last night, we went to eat hamburgers and hotdogs with my family. We talked football and tractors. We played cards. It was an extraordinary celebration of an ordinary day. And it was lovely.