Train Shows and Family Time (October 2017)
It's now October and the "holiday season" is here again, more or less beginning with Columbus Day then Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Day. So now are you making any special plans? Remember that your families are the most important thing and with time off from work and school families should be together to enjoy the holidays. This applies to families regardless of what their religious beliefs or cultural traditions might be. If the world would make "respect for families" and "love in the home" the highest priority ever, could you imagine what the residual effects might be? Tolerance and world peace, what would that be like? All this starts in the home with families and this is the foundation of peace and happiness. Think about it when you're home together with your family. "Together" is the key here, being at home together doesn't mean each family member in their separate areas on their computers or texting on a (not so) Smart Phone, or using some other form of artificial brain. Together means everybody being involved in the same thing or activity (model railroading), or just hanging out together, perhaps using actual verbal communications. If this doesn't happen in your family, this holiday season might be a prime opportunity to make a few changes that certainly could benefit everyone. Of course, this should not be limited to holidays but extent the whole year and forever.
When I'm at a train shows I notice the families and you can really tell the ones that have something special in their homes. The well behaved children, the respect for each other, kindness, and sharing and you can tell that it is not from fear of discipline but because of love and that the parents have spent quality time with their children and didn't use a TV or Internet to raise their kids. I see fathers and grandfathers taking their kids around showing them the trains and taking the time to teach them what they know. It's really uplifting to see the kids get all excited about trains and to see an adult close by letting the kids enjoy themselves because the kids already know how to act with respect and responsibility.
There are train shows all over the country and many different sizes, styles, formats, and every level of model railroading imaginable. There are shows that are orientated mostly toward kids and getting kids involved with model railroading. The NMRA National and regional Train Shows, like Trainfest, have special programs just for kids and families. Even families that are not into model railroading come to the larger shows just for the entertainment and the kids love it. Trainfest is the 11th and 12th of November in Milwaukee, WI. We really like this show for many reasons.
So this holiday season make some plans to spend some good quality time with your families and if you're a model railroader share it with them get them involved. If they are not interested but still respect your hobby, set your trains aside and spend some time with them. When you have a chance take the family to a train show, especially your kids. The teenagers might not think it's "cool" to hang with the family but there are a lot of teenagers at train shows really enjoying themselves, even the girls.
The point here is to get deeply involved with your family, use the electronic devices for quality useful purposes, teach your kids useful hands on skills and how to use their own brains and imagination. Make sure that no matter what is happening out in the world that your home is a place of welcoming love and security.