I have known the Leng family for ten years now. Bill and Millie raised two daughters in a small town. They raised them well. These two girls are very dear friends of mine- BJ and Kelly. I have never really had friends who were from a small town... most of my friends are "city girls". Their parents treated me like I was part of the family.
I was always invited for "lunch" and there was something so endearing about that. We'd sit together in the middle of the afternoon and Millie would bring out traditional lunch fare. A relish tray, a potato or macaroni salad, sandwich fixings and sweets. Other times we'd have barbeques or "appetizer afternoons". We'd sit and gab, laugh and giggle at Millie's calendar on the fridge. She had everyone's birthday written down- from cousins, to neighbours, to church friends. She would also use the calendar to mark important things like who visited, the weather, different local events coming up like church bazaars, etc.
We'd play boardgames or sit under a tree in the backyard shade and play with Rosco, their beloved dog. We'd go to Canada Day parades and have picnics at the park. At Christmas time, I was invited a few times to attend their family Christmas celebration at a local community hall. They'd have a potluck and play cards, while the children ran around and played. Millie also loves to decorate the tree at Christmas time. I would ask if I could help out with setting up the Christmas village and it was always a special treat. We'd even go to see the big seasonal lights display in another town.
I will never forget those times at the Leng house. Though we don't see one another nearly as much, I owe that family so much. They showed me there was a different way to live. Simple was good and it made me feel so warm and loved.
This is the way a family should be.