Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Family Roots

We took a little trip to experience our first ever Métis Family Picnic and to learn a little more about our family heritage.  It's pretty cool that my Uncle Dennis is doing such interesting work uncovering and researching our family roots. We all get to benefit from his hard work.  Knowing where you came from is pretty fascinating stuff and it's very humbling to hear stories of the past and empathizing with how hard people had to work to provide for their families and the challenges they met at every corner. We learn this stuff in school but suddenly it's become a lot more interesting with real human faces attached to the stories.  I can see a grade four social studies project in the making.

The girls had a few questions about the flags and what they were for and about the music and why we were getting together with family for this event but mostly they just ran around and played with cousins.  Because that's how kids learn about their culture.  Not from books but from everyday experiences that they are immersed in and are just normal to them.  

This little town of Togo has many happy memories from my childhood.  It was where my grandparents spent their retirement years and was a gathering place for my mom's family throughout my childhood.  It is where I ran and played with cousins every summer and although the town has changed and transformed over the past twenty years as all places do, it is still a great place to make memories.  I love that my girls get to experience it too.

Of course, the girls will say what they love most about getting together with family is when they get to ride a horse.  There is something about these tall, strong. beautiful animals that attracts the kids like magnets.  I'm sure some of their fascination is attributed to the fact that we don't see a lot of horses in our northern town so when we do, it is quite novel.  But maybe its more than that. Horses were a love of my Grandpa's.  Early in his life they were necessary for transportation but as time passed and they weren't necessary for getting around, my grandpa continued to keep horses and when I was a kid, "going to see the horses" was a summer tradition.  Maybe the love of horses can run deeper than we can acknowledge on the surface.

Overall, it was a perfect weekend of leaning about the past, living in the present, and making memories for the future.  Nothing better than that!

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