The Fourth of July is my absolute favorite holiday.  For many years, we have hosted a cookout here.  Neighbors and friends join in for a potluck, and my husband mans the grill.  Often, the crowd numbers around 60 people. 

We couldn’t decide if we should have it this year.  Was it safe?  Was it responsible?  Was it the right thing to do?

Then, too, there was a situation with someone we know.  His parents were just diagnosed with the virus, and his children were with them eight days prior.  Was he exposed?  Did he carry it, even without symptoms?  He works closely with son number two; would we potentially now have the virus in our own household, too?

Happily, his testing came back clear.  By this time, it was terribly late–and we still wanted to keep it very small.  In the end, we had a very pleasant gathering of only nine people.

But here’s a great silver lining:  we had a chance to talk—in depth–with everyone here.  And all of us participated in all of the conversations!