Back in 1950, my grandfather and his ten siblings all gathered for a picnic.  They all had their own families and were busy, as people tend to be, but decided that they needed to make a point of keeping in touch.  Every year since then, they’ve picked a summer weekend and gotten everyone together.

I remember going to the family picnic as a little kid.  The siblings took turns hosting, so it was a different place every year.  Sometimes the host had a swimming pool, which the kids all loved.  My favorite was the year we rented cabins at a lake.

After high school I missed a few years.  Then the year I got engaged I went back.  My husband (to-be) proposed on a Wednesday evening; two days later I took him to the family picnic and introduced him to everyone.  He spent the whole weekend asking, “Who is that?  How are they related?”

Most of the older generation is gone now, but the kids/grandkids/great-grandkids still get together every summer.  A few years ago I discovered that there are photo albums chronicling these gatherings.  Every year, the person who hosted that year’s event was responsible for adding a few pages of pictures to the album.  Imagine sixty years of family pictures!

The reunion is coming up soon, and I have been attempting to scan all the photos from what is now three full photo albums in hopes that we can eventually have books printed for everyone to have their own copy.  I’m hoping to get the last fifteen years done before I have to hand the books off to the next person.  Thus my light blogging.

Do you have any family traditions passed down from one generation to the next?


6 thoughts on “Family

  1. What a noble and worthwhile reason to blog only lightly, Socks! How very cool that your family has stayed in touch this way. The project you’re working on will be a great gift to everyone — and their children, and their children’s children … and on … and on. Good for you! I’ve missed your posts, but the reason for your quietness makes me happy. Enjoy it.

  2. This is not about family traditions – rather it’s simply to admire your pristine 1950 photos – because they have been kept in albums I expect. My old family photos are in a box and look the past because of it!

  3. As a family doctor, I only take families in my practice (the only one in Ohio that is so inclined- we are the “family fanatics”). I became excited about families due to the nature of families, especially the branch of mine that has a reunion every June. They had ten siblings in my grandma’s home, eight of whom were a vaudeville act, each having a special song that they performed at our family reunion til they were all deceased. They were great story tellers, too. These lines of songful heritage still celebrate the songs and stories of their ancestors fondly at family gatherings. And I became a family fanatic doctor.

    Reflecting on family stories and traditions and attributes (strengths) enhances the health of the reflectee. Everyone wins when families love.

  4. I remember photos my grandfather took. Every time we would visit, just before we would leave, he would line us all up in front of my father’s car and take a picture. It was a tradition. As a kid, it sometimes seemed kind of silly, who would want all these pictures of us in front of a car?

    Now, looking back, we have a great way to remember our family. We can chronical our lives based on age, fashion style, car models… As a collection, it is a fascinating study and I am so happy that my grandfather did this.

    I am afraid that we are facing a dilema now that all photos are digital. Kids in the future may not be able to see the pictures we are taking today. That’s whyt I work with It’s a photo backup and storage site dedicated to preserving family photos.

    To get people thinking about the importance of photo backup and storage, we are currently running a free photo scanning promotion with the purchase of a membership. Please check it out at

  5. How wonderful, not only to have such a close family, but to chronicle it through the years. It must be fascinating going through the pictures as you scan them, seeing all that history unfold. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Reunion was last weekend. We had a great time visiting with everyone again. To tell the truth, I’ve been awfully tired and wanted to stay home, but my kids wanted to attend. Everyone had a great time.

    Sometimes we have a talent show, but this year we spent Friday night decorating a float, and Saturday the whole family was in a parade! Youngest was 12 months; oldest was 94. After the parade (102 degrees in the baking sun), we spent the afternoon in the swimming pool. Two of my kids won this year’s pinochle tournament 🙂 Something for everyone.

    @Wren-Thanks 🙂 It’s fun, but I’ve been swamped with so much to do. I’m ready for a break! Two albums were scanned, and I get a whole year to scan the final one and try to turn all these pix into a bound book.

    @Freda-Thank you. I’m so grateful to my grandfather’s siblings for thinking to keep a record. Fortunately, the pix are in photo-safe books instead of those old “magnetic” pages that destroyed pictures after 20 years.

    @Dr.S-Your family reunions sound like as much fun as ours are! The storytelling is something that is so much fun to listen to.

    @Mike-congratulations on having spam that actually relates to the post and that people might find helpful 😉

    @Carla-It is lots of fun going through the old photos, seeing what people looked like dozens of years ago. When we look at the pix during reunions, it’s amazing the stories that the pictures trigger if you sit and listen to the older generation!

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