It just never gets old. We were able to connect with my oldest daughter Lisa and her family this past week. We don’t get to see them very much, and it was my first time to actually hold my newest granddaughter. We had special meals and lots of planned activities to make sure we got all the fun we could out of the weekend, and the icing on the cake was that we got to have one of our Larkin Nights.
Many of you readers know about Larkin Nights, but for you newbies I will explain. I originally wrote my stories for my own children. (I still do.) Whenever I would finish a chapter, our family would have a special evening that we eventually referred to as “Larkin Nights.” At those times my wife would prepare a special meal and, after we all helped clean up, we would go into the den and discuss where we had gotten to in the story that I was currently writing. After everyone was caught up, I would pull out the new chapter and read it, complete with voice characterizations.
We did Larkin Nights for years, even after the older kids went to college. They insisted that we couldn’t have Larkin Nights until they could come home and we could read the new chapter together. Now that my three older children are married and are starting families of their own, you would think that they would have more important things on their minds. But they still want to be included whenever Larkin chapters are ready to read.
Since Lisa’s family was coming down, it was a good time to have one, especially since I had a couple of brand-spanking-new chapters ready to read. One of my sons was out of town on business, but his wife came. One of my sons was working. (I will catch them up later.) We were able to connect with my daughter Natalie and her husband, who are living in New Mexico, by using Skype.
It’s definitely more difficult now and requires a bit of technology, but family Larkin Nights are still going strong in the Harris clan. They are a tougher crowd than they used to be. They’ve heard enough Larkin stories over the years that they are starting to figure out my plot strategies. But that’s okay. I just have to be sneakier.
I really don’t know who has more fun–my kids, because they are hearing new stories about their favorite characters, or me, because I get to watch their faces and hear their comments when I surprise them or make them laugh. We all love Larkin Nights! I hope they never end. If God lets us have them in heaven, you’re all invited!
Blessings in Him,