We almost missed our big annual family holiday this year with all the extended family. With different siblings and their family going overseas to visit in-laws, we thought "Oh well, insha Allah, next summer." Our children looked forward to it every year but we hadn't realised how much they would miss it until just this autumn (fall) when they all begged to go to the beach for the day before winter kicks in.
Usually, we would spend a weekend away at the beach somewhere far away but they were so desperate that they didn't mind a day trip. Masha Allah, where we live, our autumns are still warm and we don't live that far from the beach - it's up and down our coastline. Since we had only one day we didn't want to go somewhere too far but we certainly didn't want the city beach. So we ended up driving about 1 hour to a lovely beach that had bush walking along the coast.
Here we are starting on our bush walk just after lunch.
Masha Allah, we would be walking in the lush bush but once in a while we would meet the coastline.
There would also be Aboriginal rock carvings believed to be thousands of years old. This one is of a whale:
Finally, our return to the beach. (Since we had young children we didn't walked that far but one could actually walk all the way to Wollongong - which is quite far!)
The extended-family and inter-generational family time is so important. We nearly missed ours but the children's behaviours demonstrated how important it is not to miss it. It is not just about having fun together but about building and maintaining the wider family connections and ties of kinship and it enhances the feeling of belonging.