Tag Archives: family reunion

Random Five Friday

It’s been a while since I’ve posted five randoms on Friday, so today’s the day:

1.) Motor Man and I hosted my family reunion last Saturday. My earliest memories of that event were when I was a child, and the family met at my uncle’s farm. We all brought wire coat hangers and roasted hot dogs over an open fire.  Over the years, there have been reunions with more than 70 people in attendance. This year, we had 14. But the weather was perfect, and we all had a great time.

2.) Last night, for the first time ever, I put a cat in time out.  Sundae has bitten me on the arm three times this week – all unprovoked and “breaking the skin” each time. Every time that it’s happened, I’ve been sitting at my computer, not paying any attention to her. Perhaps that’s the problem. I think she knows what she’s doing is wrong, because she immediately runs from the scene.  Last night, when she ran from the room, I closed the door, leaving her in another part of the house from Motor Man and me.  I’m open to suggestions….

3.) I took this picture on our most recent Outer Banks trip to see the wild horses. It wasn’t until I uploaded the pics to the computer that I noticed the neck-scratching taking place.

4.) I’m sharing a sunset picture from earlier in the week. It was at the end of an overcast day, and I had to wait for the sun to clear the clouds. So worth the wait.

5.) I recently purchased a “super size” external hard drive, and Marshall came to transfer all my photos off the computer. (YIKES….the idea of doing this is keeping me awake at night, even though they’re already backed up on another hard drive.) When we connected the hard drive to the computer via USB, we expected it to be assigned a drive letter.  But that didn’t happen. So, unless we can figure this out, I may be returning that hard drive for a more user-friendly one. Searching for solutions online has us even more confused. We aren’t IT folks: just regular people. Again, I’m open to suggestions….

Have a good weekend; looks to be a rainy one for us. At least, we have no family reunion planned.

~These Days Of Mine~

 

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And Then There Were None

My mom was one of twelve. And each of those twelve took a spouse. So I had lots of uncles and aunts.  Those who married into the family jokingly called themselves the “outlaws”.  We didn’t think of them as in-laws, though, they were all our aunts and uncles.

Tuesday evening, my Aunt Betty, the last surviving member of that generation passed away.  She was the widow of Mom’s youngest brother, Stanley, who died in 2004.

Uncle Stanley and Aunt Betty lived in Pennsylvania their entire married life. But every summer, they returned to Uncle Stanley’s hometown, which was also my hometown, for a week’s vacation.

Aunt Betty embraced her husband’s family as her own.  His maternal genealogy had already been extensively documented, so she took on the task of researching his father’s side of the family.   In doing so, she stirred up quite the hornet’s nest when she learned that, apparently, his grandfather was illegitimate.  (Some in the family insisted that she just had NOT looked in the right place to find the marriage information, as well as the father’s name.)

 A-n-y-w-a-y…..

One of my fondest memories of Aunt Betty took place the summer that I was seven years old.  It just happened that, while they were in the area on vacation, my mom took a bad fall and severely broke her ankle.  She was rushed to the hospital, underwent surgery and remained in the hospital for three days.

My mom and I were practically inseparable at that time, and it was just unheard of for me to spend the night anywhere else but with her.  But, that incident required that I stay the night with my grandmother (and the next couple of nights with my sister).  Since Uncle Stanley and Aunt Betty were visiting Grandma, Aunt Betty helped me get ready for bed that night. They had a daughter my age, so I’m guessing that she, too, probably spent that night with Grandma.  I just remember how kind Aunt Betty was to a little girl who was missing her mom and scared that she was hurt and in the hospital.

My mom’s family had an annual reunion (also here in our hometown in Virginia), and Uncle Stanley and Aunt Betty were always there.  Aunt Betty kept a “guest book”, and at each reunion, she went around to every person there, hugged them and had them sign the book.

A photo of Aunt Betty was shared by her family on Facebook this week, following her death. And this comment was left by one of my cousins: “Aunt Betty is now passing around her little book in heaven, getting the Ellis family’s signatures recorded for their reunion in heaven.”

Yes, indeed: sign in, all you Ellis family members.  Aunt Betty has arrived with the guest book.

Aunt Betty & Uncle Stanley
Family Reunion, 1998

~These Days Of Mine~

Random Five Friday

Perhaps it’s the lazy days of summer, but blogging seems to have become increasingly difficult recently.  I know I’m not alone, since fellow bloggers have posted the same sentiments.  Here are five completely somewhat random thoughts:

1.) Our frequent rain showers that we were enjoying earlier in the summer have come to an end, and keeping plants alive is now requiring daily watering. Adding to my chores is this beautiful planter I discovered at Lowe’s this week. I think it’s worth it.

deck plant 7-23-2015 6-20-37 AM

2.)  Sure wish I could grow zinnias as pretty as these.

zinnias 6-17-2015 10-06-20 AM

3.) We’ve had some amazing skies recently, including this sunrise from yesterday morning.  There are some advantages in being an early riser.

sunrise2 7-23-2015 6-10-16 AM

4.)  The biggest race of the year is tomorrow night at our local track.  The weather forecast for tomorrow evening: clear and in the upper 70’s. Sounds just about perfect.

langley

5.) Our family reunion is scheduled to be at our house on August 1. We’re hoping for nice weather, as opposed to this, the day of the reunion two years ago. (See Random Thought #1 above….)

rain 8-3-2013 2-59-05 PM

Happy weekend! Wishing you nice weather…unless you need a rain shower.

~These Days Of Mine~

We Now Resume Regular Programming…

….and I’m back, after a week’s blogging vacation. This was the first hiatus I’ve taken since I began blogging nearly four years ago. It was a nice break, but I did miss posting.

When last we visited, I was stressing about the rain chances for our family reunion, which was Saturday, August 2.  And… it did rain. So, for the second year in a row, we entertained in our garage, amongst the hoes, rakes, ladders, etc.  But no one seemed to mind at all.  And we doubled our number of guests from last year: this year, we had 18.

It was a very busy week.  We enjoyed my niece, Donna,  and her son, Connor, being with us. Motor Man and I always try to find fun adventures for Connor while they are here. (Contrary to what he says: we don’t just ride, eat and take photos.)

He sat in a hydroplane (race boat) at Motor Man’s shop:

connor in hydro 8-1-2014 1-46-34 PM

And took a short ride (after he posed for this picture) in what may well be the world’s fastest “souped-up” golf cart:

connor on golf cart 8-4-2014 3-20-27 PM

We went to see “my” horses on the Outer Banks.

horses and 4 of us 8-4-2014 11-11-20 AM

We had lunch (there’s the eating part again) with his Aunt Barb and Grandma June:

donna june barb connor1 8-1-2014 12-58-41 PM

We also did a little beachcombing, took a drive out in the country and had lunch with my friend, Donna. (Connor may be onto something about us eating all the time).

Before we knew it, the week was over, and it was time to say good-bye.

bye pic 8-6-2014 9-26-26 AM

Is it too early to start the countdown until their next visit? I didn’t think so.

~These Days Of Mine~

Random Five Friday

This week has been spent cleaning and getting everything ready for our family reunion tomorrow. So, today, I’ll just share some random recent photos.

1.) Perhaps my favorite picture (so far) of my hummie.  I love that he poses for me on the feeder.

hummie 7-25-2014 12-43-09 PM

2.) The crape myrtles are blooming: it must be summer! This one is actually more purple than what it appears in this photo.

 crepe myrtle 7-26-2014 7-10-31 AM

 3.)  Although I know it’s completely unreliable, last week, I began watching the extended forecast for Saturday’s weather. When I first looked at it, the forecast for tomorrow was “Rain, 90%”.  As time passed, that chance of precip has gone down to 15%, and is now at a 50% chance of scattered thunderstorms. We can only hope they’re scattered somewhere other than our yard.

4.) Yesterday, Motor Man and I did our end-of-the-month work at our shop. I had assistance.

gypsy

5.) My niece and her son arrived yesterday for their annual visit, so I’m taking a little vacation from blogging. I’ll try to do some blog visiting next week, but won’t be posting.  These Days will return on August 11. Have a good week!

~These Days Of Mine~

Random Five Friday

Randomness!

1.) We had much-needed rain yesterday!  I could almost hear the grass and plants slurping it up as it fell.   No watering for me for a day or two.

2.) Between the rain showers, my friend, Bev, and I went beachcombing. We each have a little plastic sand bucket and a long-handled mini-rake. Sometimes we walk side-by-side, seeking treasures and chatting. Other times, one of us will walk up the beach ahead of the other. It’s a relaxing time, listening to the waves lap the shore and finding the occasional shard of sea glass or coral.

beach 7-24-2014 4-25-31 PM

3.) I’m not sure if Bride Swan is moulting or was just a little over-zealous with her preening this week.

bride moulting 7-20-2014 6-52-21 PM

4.) Tuesday morning’s sunrise was photo-worthy.  Our camera was in the car, so Motor Man went to get it AND took this picture. What a guy.

jr sunrise 7-22-2014 6-13-11 AM

5.)  He and I are once again hosting my family reunion next Saturday. So begins the frequent checking of the extended weather guess forecast.  This morning, the Weather Channel’s forecast for August 2 shows….. rain. 90%.  Not “a chance of showers” or “isolated showers”, but rain. I certainly am hoping we don’t have a rerun of last year’s reunion day weather.

rain 8-3-2013 2-59-05 PM

~These Days Of Mine~

This Year’s Family Reunion

On Saturday, Motor Man and I hosted the reunion for my Mom’s side of the family. It was set to begin at 3:00.  This photo was taken from our garage door at 2:59.

rain 8-3-2013 2-59-05 PM

Even before the rain, Motor Man had suggested we set up everything in the garage. It proved to be a wise decision.

I’m not sure when the first reunion was held for our family. The date on this photo is 1952. This was taken when the reunion was held at my Uncle Andrew’s farm.  From the left: my late Aunt Mattie, my sister June, my mom, my late aunts Martha and Lucille and, on the right, my cousin, Janet.  Uncle Andrew always pulled old farm wagons into the yard , covered them with white paper, and they were the tables for the food. And apparently, the seats while waiting for the food. (Note my Aunt Lucille’s pearls, dangling earrings….and socks and tennis shoes.)

family reunion1 1952

Years ago, there would be upwards of 70 folks attending the family reunion.

Now, so many things have changed within what was once a large family. My mom and her 11 siblings have passed on, and we’ve lost a few of the first cousins. And some are physically unable to attend. To the younger generations, the reunion doesn’t mean what it did to our parents and to us.

So on Saturday, we had nine. Nine. Counting Marshall, Motor Man and me. There were four of us first cousins.

4 cousins 8-3-2013 6-28-27 PM

Though we were small in number, we had a great time. And the sun came out while we were visiting and eating.  And sharing our memories of our parents and grandparents.

A coincidence? Maybe not.