For Memorial weekend, our local farm had free admission for all Active and Veteran Military Families to many of their activities. Every year we make it a point to visit the farm a few times. This year we picked a bunch of strawberries and cherries. It was a bittersweet visit as it was the last time we’d visit as a family of four.
This tradition is important to me because it’s a reminder to share once again the story of my tata and how he also worked the fields when he came across the border. It all goes hand in hand with sharing the history, see the fields all around New Jersey, and best of all being able to experience the hard labor.
To the kids, picking berries is fun, as it can be. But to me, it’s a constant reminder of what our people do to survive, have a better life, and live the American dream.
Cecilia was so excited about all the berries. She made sure too pick the right berries and always reminded us to be gentle with them. She took her time squatting and looking through all the leaves. She wanted to make sure not to pick berries that weren’t ready. After sharing a little bit more about my Tata. She knew how important it was not to waste or mistreat the plants. She knew it was special to be on the farm.
Bailey has grown so tall I forgot just how tall until I saw him reaching high and bringing branches down for his sister. Seeing him grow thru our trips to the farm were so emotional for me. He was excited to fill his basket and while we didn’t spend as much time being in the cherry fields, he made sure to keep his eyes peeled for the perfect cherries and kept picking them until we boarded the hayride.
It was great to witness their excitement, respectful behavior, and see their growth thru the years of visiting the farm.
May our future never forget where they came from.