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Sunday night. Shorts. A t-shirt. Do we clean? A little. We prep the boys. ("Use your manners!") Li'l T sees the family pull up. He runs to the door, and holds it open with a huge smile on his face. High fives and handshakes all around. We don't know each other well. We take to the backyard, where we promptly run out of gas for the grill. Whoops. Everyone giggles and Mr. takes off for the gas station to refill the tank. The kids run, we bond over soccer teams and the mundane tasks of parenting. We eat Midwestern fare: steak from the farm, cheesy potatoes, green leafy salad. The kids picnic on the floor. We hear stories from afar. We challenge, ask questions, decide this was awesome!
Fast forward two days, I'm back in my kitchen. With a long lost friend. Cokes, waters, snacks. Let the questions fly. I'm here to help. Feet up. (Yep, in the kitchen.) Stretchy pants on. The family senses (Or gets a direction from me) to get out of the way. We talk. We question. We make a plan. Dinner is late for me, but who cares?
Both friends (not connected in anyway) brought up this concept of hospitality. How it brings community together, how it doesn't have to be perfect, how it doesn't seem to "be a thing" in the wise words of my friend anymore. It left me thinking, more people should be at my table more often.
Do you practice hospitality? Is it a skill? Is it purposeful? Does it just happen?