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altLast month I had a big birthday – I turned the big 4-0.
I don’t really know what this mid-life crisis nonsense is about when people turn 40. I was excited about it. My husband threw a fun gathering at a Fayetteville, Ark., locale with some of our good friends. For me, this stage of life has been blessed with contentment and possibilities. I love my family, I love to garden and I don’t need a whole lot to make me happy.
Recently, the kids and I made a long overdue visit to Granny and Papa’s (my parents) farm in Missouri. We spent a week at their house and the kids played like they were at their own amusement park. I really don’t know if there is a greater gift we can give our children (or ourselves) than having them spend quality time with their grandparents. I loved watching my parents laugh at all the kids’ antics. I especially appreciated when they noticed the kids’ work ethic.
The days during our visit were busy and fun. They set off fireworks and sparklers with my dad. They jumped in his truck to watch him do surgeries at the veterinary clinic.
My mom helped them make homemade snow cones when it got hot. They set up farms with all of my dad’s old toys all over my mother’s living room. My folks treated us to dinner at a local Amish Dutch cooking restaurant. The kids visited their first soda fountain at a local drug store. They drove old golf carts, the RTV and my oldest son drove around on their riding lawnmower…just for fun.
My parents still reside in the rural town where I went to high school. While I was home, I realized several of my old classmates were also in town visiting their families. I love a good impromptu reunion.
Fortunately, social media has kept me in touch with people from long ago even though they now live far away.
On Saturday night, the word had traveled around our little hometown that we would be gathering at a local restaurant to catch up on life. About eight classmates came together for an evening of reminiscing about the good old days growing up in rural Missouri. We laughed about so many of our memories. For fun we spent weekends and summers driving around in old cars and pick-up trucks and parking on the town square. Most of had worked at our first jobs in town at local stores and restaurants. We talked about teachers we loved, ones that loved us and even an adored principal who has since passed on. We visited about our current jobs, marriages and families. Catching up was good for our souls.
Every Independence Day weekend our hometown hosts an alumni weekend at the high school. We will soon be in charge of hosting the all-school parade and reunion supper at our 25th graduation anniversary. Even though it is a few years away, I am already looking forward to planning and hosting this event with my fellow farm kids. These people get me. I hope you have an opportunity to reunite with some old friends this summer, neighbor.

 

Jody HarrisEditorial / Opinionsbirthday,Jody HarrisLast month I had a big birthday – I turned the big 4-0. I don’t really know what this mid-life crisis nonsense is about when people turn 40. I was excited about it. My husband threw a fun gathering at a Fayetteville, Ark., locale with some of our good friends....The Ozarks' most read farm newspaper, reaching more than 58,000 readers in Missouri, Arkansas and Oklahoma