Family Day was first introduced in Alberta in 1990 when the Lieutenant Governor of that province passed the Family Day Act. Over the next two decades, other provinces, at different times, adopted the holiday with Ontario implementing it in 2008. The purpose of Family Day is for people to take a break from their busy work lives so that they can focus on and spend quality time with their families. I think this is a great idea as we all need balance in our lives – time to do things we want to do as well as time for the things we have to do.

Chuck has always been and still is a workaholic. When our kids were young, he worked long hours often getting home after the children were in bed. After a few years of this routine, I made a proclamation. I didn’t care what was going on, but Sundays would become Pilon Family Day. (I guess I was a little ahead of my time.) At any rate, the Pilon Act was passed!

Every Sunday we would make a point of doing something as a family. It didn’t have to be a big event. It could be as simple as tobogganing, going to a park, riding our bikes or as exciting as going to McDonald’s for lunch. (From the age of two, our kids could smell a McDonald’s a mile away).

There is one Sunday that really sticks out in my mind and I’m not sure why. On that particular day, we went to Heart Lake Conservation Park. It was in the late fall and there was absolutely no one around, just the four of us. We walked along the lake and in the wooded area. It was so peaceful with only the kids’ voices breaking the silence. The three kids (Chuck, Tam and Steve) scouted ahead and came across the remains of a play fort someone had constructed a few years earlier. Their plan was to rebuild this structure back to its former glory but alas, the lack of available materials on site squashed that idea. Further down the trail, a russet tree was discovered loaded with apples. The kids loved climbing the tree, picking their apples and devouring these delicious rusty coats. That activity was certainly more fun than taking apples out of a bag from the grocery store. It was just such a wonderful day. I will hold this memory in my heart forever.

I hope everyone has the opportunity to spend time on this special day, Monday, February 21st, with the family members they love. The day will pass by quickly but the memories will last forever.