When I was very young, small town newspapers often printed notices of local events, such as: The homemakers' club met at Mrs. Morgan's home and Evelyn Smith served cake and punch; Mrs. Jones had visitors from upstate for the weekend and the new baby is growing like a week; the church ladies hosted a lovely luncheon for the new pastor and his wife (full menu listed) . . . .
These always seemed to end with "a good time was had by all."
Local and rural news is rarely printed nowadays in the newspapers I see. We get full-blown journalism about achievements: interviews with 4-H youngsters whose animal/plant/cake won Best of Show or Grand Champion; charity group donations to a community project; news of student excellence in all the county schools . . . .
Styles in journalism have changed, but people still want to read about what's going on in their area, and look for names they recognize--their own peers, or the children and grandchildren of folks they went to school with, the neighbor's family doings.
My recent "good time" won't make the Star, but it was indeed a good time. My Ohio daughter came over to visit. This has become an annual thing--usually at the end of May--when she brings her spade and buckets and digs up rogue ferns (those that wander too far from the bed I prefer them to inhabit) and the wandering surprise lily that insists on coming up under one of my back yard bushes.
This time she also sprayed my mint, which has grown to intimidating and alarming size, in the hope that the rose bush the mint was "protecting" will thrive on its own. (I have great faith in that rose bush--it was well-established when I moved in 31 years ago, so it should be fine without the mint.)
While all this work was going on, I dug up the few dandelions that love to decorate my mulch and sprayed the poison ivy plants (fewer each year, thanks be). The day grew windy so I postponed sweeping the patio and driveway--whatever I stirred up would re-settle a little farther down or come back to the same place I just cleaned. Been there, done that.
Our visit wasn't all work and no play. We had a good lunch before we began our labors--baked herbed chicken tenders and polenta with parmesan and paprika, plus salad. Oh, and drop scones (gluten-free, naturally) which are best eaten with eyes closed--flavor is wonderful but they aren't much to look at. (Note to self: work on scones.)
After our outdoor work, we came in for hot drinks (the day turned a little cooler than expected) and a long chat about our current projects. She loves to cross-stitch, and also crochets and knits. When she mentioned a couple of baby afghans she'll be knitting, I donated some yarn--actually, two good-sized totes stuffed full, plus a medium-sized tote also full, and a grocery bag just right for a half-finished project. (And before you ask, I still have plenty of yarn.)
My son-in-law always teases her about coming home with more stuff than she took for me. I'm only too happy to share. Besides yarn, I burdened--or, maybe, blessed--her a basil plant ready to harvest and a big swath of Greek oregano for drying. She always gets my plastic boxes with lids from lunch meat and other foods to use in her freezer for her garden produce. My kitchen begins to look less cluttered now.
We caught up on family news, expressed concerns about friends and neighbors. We didn't solve any global issues--but we lifted up all who need help and love in their lives.
We relax. We laugh. We escape whatever stress currently invades our lives. We share our time, our concern, our belongings. And it's okay that we don't get our names in the newspaper.
That's what I call a good time.
May you have good times in your life.