Family before deadline

 Kent Walton

Before going to bed tonight, remember to turn your clocks back an hour as Daylight Savings Time comes to an end at 2 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 1.

Before going to bed tonight, remember to turn your clocks back an hour as Daylight Savings Time comes to an end at 2 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 1.

It’s been a while since I last checked in with you.


I missed my deadline last week and the paper had to go on without me. 

I did miss my deadline with good reason. Thanksgiving weekend was family time with my Nottawa kin. Everyone was home from university. It was great to see my daughter and her crew all together. 

Now that had nothing to do with me being late. It was the next weekend. The rest of our family was finally available to celebrate Thanksgiving, Part 2. That’s when I lost my way.

My son and his crew arrived late Friday night. These are the younger grandchildren so it meant being involved in everything that was about to happen. 

Saturday morning meant pancakes and bacon, the usual fare for this bunch. The problem was that the age range was somewhat extreme and thus their sleeping patterns. Breakfast was like being at Mel’s Diner. It went on forever as person after person stumbled into the kitchen area. 

Next time Judy vows that breakfast will be at a set hour. Take it or leave it.

Meanwhile in between pancake production, Chef Judy was trying to prepare the vegetables and turkey for the evening meal. It all seemed counter productive at the time.

When the final pancake had been served it was time to head up to the Ravenna area to pick apples. This is our annual tradition. Often we were rained upon or froze our butts in the process. Not this time.

Rain was forecast but there we were gathering our apples for future pies and apple sauce. Two bushels later we were on our way home via the Scenic Caves Road viewing the Georgian Triangle at its finest.

We hadn’t been home long when there were demands to immediately clear the kitchen table for games. We could not escape Chinese checkers, crokinole and dominos. 

I could not hide behind the need to peel potatoes or cut up beans. It was game time.

Now keep in mind, this was still Saturday. This adventure was unrelenting all day and into the evening.

Sunday morning, life continued at Mel’s Diner. Judy had not yet set the boundaries for breakfast hours so again, it went on forever. On the positive side, breakfast went on so long, no one needed lunch.

Needless to say, I had little time throughout the day to worry about anything more than keeping the troops entertained, fed and watered. 

Shortly after supper the crew started to pack up to leave for home. I love these kids, but their youth is exhausting. When all were gone, we didn’t even turn on the television. We sat quietly sipping a well-deserved reward. No words were spoken, no games were played.

I had traded off my morning shift at hospice in case I needed the time for polishing up my column on Monday morning. What column? 

First thing Monday morning we attempted to straighten up the house with Judy beginning the first of many loads of washing. How could six extra people create so much laundry in less than three days?

I excused myself from the ongoing chores in order to write the column that was supposed to be already in existence.

I had no longer started to gather my thoughts when the doorbell rang. At the door was Sue, an old friend who was returning from living in Alberta. Surprise! We had a wonderful visit and the three of us did a lot of reminiscing over the next hours. 

Needless to say, my column wasn’t written. Deadline missed. Good thing I’m not a reporter.

Making choices, Kent Walton can be reached at 

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