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When I was a kid, I didn’t understand what Memorial Day was.  I just thought everyone took Monday off so we could have a cookout for my father’s birthday.  We didn’t cook out all that often in my family, so this was always a big deal.  We’d clean the house, and Mom would bring her old-fashioned coffee maker up from the basement – the kind that percolated the coffee in what looked like a stainless steel jug.  We would cut up veggies for what Mom called a “relish tray,” complete with olives and pickles carefully arranged on special serving platters.  Aunt B would make her special German potato salad, the forerunner of my own German potato salad, and there would be an endless stream of hot dogs and hamburgers from the grill.  It was pretty cool.

Last year, instead of having a cookout, we had a wedding.  It was a lovely wedding, but it sortof overwhelmed dad’s birthday.  This year, Dad, who is usually very laid back about birthdays & Father’s Day and things, let it be known that he would like to have his own birthday celebration this year.  So today everyone in town gathered at the Family Homestead.  Where a certain little lady stole the show.

She’s a whole pound bigger than she was at birth, though she’s still all long, skinny arms and legs, and funny facial expressions.

Including smiles.  And coos, She’s awfully good at them.  It’s pretty awesome.

It seems that once her parents figured out how to burp her properly, she became a much more cheerful baby!  And now her aunts and uncles are learning how too.

Seriously, kids are the best entertainment there is.

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