At the end of our vacation week, Jeff, Biscuit and I drove 7 hours south to our annual family reunion.
My Granny on my Mama's side was one of 12 siblings. She had 5 sisters and 6 brothers, and that's the part of the family this reunion is for. This was the 47th consecutive year for the reunion, but I worry about its future. Fewer and fewer people are attending as the original group is getting smaller and smaller.
My great aunt is the only one of the original siblings left. Many of the first cousins are either gone or stopped coming to the reunion when their parents were gone. It's sad to see the event dwindling, but I have some great memories.
Mama captured a lot of those memories with pictures of my brother and me in different spots around the state park where we have the reunion. So I decided this year that I was going to take pictures of Biscuit in some of those same spots.
My brother and I talked about it this year, and we decided that we'll continue to attend the reunion as long as Mama goes. Some of the cousins show up every 5 or so years, and quite frankly, we often don't know who some of them are. We took photos of all the first cousins, then second cousins, then third cousins. Biscuit fits into the third cousin group, but there were 3 little boys and 1 girl that I don't recall seeing before. We don't even know which of the original siblings those kids were descendants of.
One thing that was different about this year was that Jeff and I had to leave the reunion that Sunday and drive home. Normally, we drive down on Saturday, spend Saturday night in a hotel, go to the reunion Sunday morning and afternoon, then drive to my uncle's house to stay Sunday night. One of the best things about the trip is hanging out at my uncle's house after the reunion talking about everybody.
So after we got on the road home, I put on my headset and called Mama from my cellphone. We had a fun debriefing on who was there, who wasn't, what people wore, what the kids were like, who brought what food, which foods were best ... all the things we would've talked about in person.
I wish the reunion could be like it was in its heyday. I would love for Biscuit to grow up with that kind of gathering in his life. Back in the day, there would be easily 200+ people there. Can you imagine looking around at 200+ people and realizing that you are connected to every person there by blood or marriage? It was a very cool thing.
Even if the reunion peters out at some point, we'll still have plenty of photos and stories to share with Biscuit. I hope it helps him to know where he came from.