There’s nothing better to bring a family together than a grill out. It’s a Thompson family tradition that is being handed down to the newest homeowners in the lineage.
Each summer, the Thompson family tree has one very important gathering: the annual family cookout. “It’s sort of a send off for the grandparents, parents, and everyone else who likes to take off at the end of the summer to go to Florida or Texas,” said Jack Thompson.
The date is never set in stone, but there is an unspoken schedule of who puts on the event. “Generally it bounces back and forth between Jack’s sisters and cousins,” said Jack’s wife April, “but now that we’re officially homeowners, our name came up in the lottery!”
April has only been a part of the Thompson family for a short while now, but says that they’ve welcomed her and helped ease her transition of moving to Johnston. “I always had a small family, so it was a new experience for me.”
“It definitely requires some work, but it was a great way for our entire family to get together and see us and Bridger,” said Jack. The couple has been hard at work planning the grill and entertaining their new bundle of joy, Bridger. While grill out food isn’t exactly on the menu for him just yet, Jack and April were happy he could take part in the festivities.
After gathering the hot dogs, bratwursts, charcoal, plates and condiments, Jack and April were prepared. Before they knew it, the day had arrived and they were welcoming 23 family members. Hungry relatives came from down the street all the way from Minnesota to join in on the good times and fellowship.
The young couple admitted that while they’ve always enjoyed their home in Johnston, they have never entertained such a large crowd. Hosting a family event in their own front yard has given them some extra appreciation for their Johnston digs. “We love grilling and being outdoors, but having a party like this really makes you realize just how much you love your front yard,” joked Jack. “I guess it really is the simple things that make a house truly a home.”
The young Thompson couple have only called themselves homeowners for a short time, but they’re already looking forward to plenty of more fun activities. Jack said he was hesitant to admit to his wife that his family had already invited themselves back next summer, but was surprised to find out she was already planning a festivity for friends.
“You were just talking about how you wanted to show off your new grill,” said April.
Jack laughed, but finally nodded his head. “All right, all right, but this time it’s going to be you that is doing the grilling.”