Reunion Recap

Well, it’s over and done with. My family reunion was last Sunday. You know, the one I’ve been asking for advice and suggestions about? It was a HUGE success.

First, the weather was perfect. 80 degrees with low humidity and we had lots of shade.

Second, we had really good attendance. I haven’t done the official head count, but I guestimate somewhere between 65 and 75 people made it.

Third, the food was darn near perfect. We siblings (who hosted the event) did hamburgers and hot dogs. Our aunts brought chicken and everyone else brought salads and appetizers. And watermelon. We ended up with about 4 of those. 🙂

It was an event I’m not sure I can fully describe my feelings about. My sister and her husband came from Philadelphia and spent a week with our mother. It was the signature event of Mom’s year. She loved having my sister here. And she was so excited to see relatives she hadn’t seen in a long time. For that alone, the work was worth it.

My daughter Michal flew up from California with her boyfriend for the reunion. My daughter Christie drove 2 hours over for the weekend to be at the reunion (and visit with her sister from Ca). She had to leave halfway through the picnic to get home for a 7PM night shift at the hospital after getting little or no sleep.

Other relatives came from near and far away and I was humbled by the fact that they made the effort to gather with family some of them hadn’t ever met.

But you know what got to my heart the most? How well my siblings and I worked together on this event. Every single one of them pitched in. And every single one of them was as excited about this event as I was. It was work. A lot of work. And I’ll give a special shout-out to my sister-in-law, Trudy, who shopped for, and oversaw, the food end of things. She really went above and beyond. And that’s normal for her. She’s an amazing woman.

Probably the most satisfying thing about this family reunion was the commemoration tables. We put up tables with genealogy charts and pictures of ancestors and those more recent who have passed. It got a LOT of attention.

I didn’t get cd of pictures done beforehand, but my brother in law took some phenomenal group pictures and I’ll be passing those along to relatives when I can.

It’s been 5 years since we had a reunion like this and who knows if we’ll have another one. But this one will hold a special place in my heart for years to come.

posted by Laurie Ryan


15 responses to “Reunion Recap

  1. Oh Laurie, I could not help but tear up while reading…thank you so much for sharing this with us. Our very first reunion will be September 17th and we can hardly wait! I am probably the last person anyone would think of to have a hand in a social event (1:1 is good – groups, not so much). We are hoping for 33 people who have responded with a “yes” and are coming from Alaska, Calif. and various parts of the state – some taking up to 6 hours. I am hoping ours turns out well and looking forward to the experience. Lavada has helped so much with the “history” and we will get our first taste of the whole family!

    Thanks again Laurie.

  2. Oh, Barb, I’m SO excited for you. You will have such a good time. I loved hearing more stories, and hearing ones I already knew repeated. Hearing others talk about how they loved Grandma Lila as much as I did. 🙂 And about her homemade rolls that were made with a pinch of this and a handful of that. No one has ever been able to recreate them. You’ll have to let us know how your reunion goes.
    Fun times!

  3. Great pictures Laurie, it’s been fun hearing you get this together. Yes, September is our month. It’s the first reunion and for many of us it’s been years, like 30 to 40 since we’ve seen each other. Putting pictures together brought up fond memories that we all share of our wonderful Nana.

    • To me, searching through pictures (and the related memories) is a bonus when it comes to planning a reunion. I’m glad you have such wonderful memories. And that you’re time to visit and celebrate our families is coming soon.

  4. It was an amazing event and wonderful to see so many people working together to make it special 🙂

    • Holy Toledo, Michal. You must have a thousand emails to return now that you’re back at work. I can’t believe you took time to stop by the blog and say hi. Thank you! And I hope you survived your “Monday”.

  5. Awesome. Glad it went so well and the weather- man, can I just say, I’m totally jealous of that factor alone!!!

    Great photo of you and the gang. I know you had a ball, I can tell by your faces. Job well done, girl!! I’m so glad your family made the effort – such special times to remember.

    • Yep, the weather was about as perfect as it can get. We dropped right back into the gray the next day. Thankfully, the sunshine has returned.

      I loved that goofing around picture of the five of us. My husband said “Okay, now make a funny face.” Did you notice that 4 out of 5 of us did devil’s horns on a sibling? We must think alike. lol

  6. So glad it went well for you, Laurie, and it was lovely that all the siblings worked together to make it such a success, Loved the photos.

    • It was a fun day, Tricia. And I’ve got lots of new family information and contacts. Now all I have to find is the time to delve deeper into our history. Sigh. 🙂

  7. Reunions are events that stay with us forever. So glad yours met the mark, and created new galleries of memories to cherish.

    • You’re so right, Marion. They DO stay with us forever. My brother called last night and said he was going through withdrawal since he hadn’t heard from me in few days. (there was a flurry of phone and email activity leading up to the reunion).

  8. Laurie- you know, you were all raised by the same folks, so you must have something in common! LOL!

  9. Valerie J. Patterson

    Laurie, I’m so glad your reunion went off without a hitch and was so well attended. There truly is nothing like getting together with family and taking a trip back in time to visit the memories of those that are gone. Thank you for sharing the photos, too. That trio of girls will probably see that photo at another reunion and marvel at how young and lovely they were “way back then”. You’ve made a valuable contribution to your family’s history. You and your siblings should be proud!

    • Those three girls are my grandaughters. We were worried they wouldn’t have much to do, but they played fine with the other kids and even managed small amounts of mischief. 🙂

      We have contributed to our family history, haven’t we. I never thought about it that way. That feels really good! 🙂

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