Monday, July 23, 2007

On Saturday, Maggie and Allen spent time with Mike learning how to use the lathe on our shopsmith. Actually, Maggie already knew how and a few years ago she made me the nicest rolling pin that I have used many times. It is my favorite rolling pin. But on Saturday, Maggie made me these four spatulas that I enjoy using for sauteing and for stirfries. I'm not sure if you can tell, but the end two spatulas are scooped slightly. This morning I oiled them and they are ready to go. Thanks so much, Mags!

I like wood things, especially in my kitchen. I have a collection of wood cutting boards that I started a few years ago when our family was eating crabs and we only had 2 or 3 boards. Since then, I have bought a dozen or so for $1 or less, usually 75 or 50 cents a piece. Here is my total collection:

The huge cutting board in the front is 20x14x2" that is my most expensive cutting board for which I paid $4. It sells in Walmart for $79. We use this board every Sunday to cut our roast. The board on the right that is made of maple and walnut was made by Mike just before we were married 24 years ago. It is getting worn. Anyhow, this is one of my few collections.

Also, this past Saturday, was my father's annual family reunion, called the Graham Reunion. This year was our 72nd reunion. We didn't go this year because we've been too busy, but we go to more of them than we miss. This year there were about 100 people there. We've had as many as 250 and the lowest was 75. You can read about our family on our webpage that needs to be updated! Go to I encourage everyone to have annual reunions.

In 1935 we had our first Graham picnic because Grandmother Sarah Graham had died that year and all the siblings wanted to get together. Since there were 10 siblings, each sibling took a year to host the event. That means every 10 years it is our turn to host it. It is such a major event, that once a decade is enough!

There are many traditions at the Graham reunion. Some of them have gone away (such as the smelly outhouse and the wonderful hand pump that we kids congregated around, and Uncle Hubie's piggie back rides), but some of them are still going strong (such as the baseball and volleyball games, the children's games, the 3-legged race, etc.). Most of the reunions are held at Shawnee State Park near Pittsburgh, PA (usually 8 out of every 10 are here).

There are three favorite traditions that I want to mention. Every Graham reunion has a waterballoon contest where we form two long parallel lines and you have to take turns throwing the water balloon back and forth, but each time the line has to step back so that you get farther away. Half of the people therefore end up soaked. The second tradition is the tug of war game between the Grahams and the outlaws. Anyone whose last name is Graham gets on one end, and of course, all others on the other end. Since I am a daughter, we are outlaws! This picture shows a third of the line.

The third tradition is the ugly red bull contest. There is always a table set up for "paperwork" where you sign in (to keep track of attendance and get your nametag) and update your family tree info. But on that table is a huge jar of candy and you have to guess the number of candies in the jar. The winner has to take home the red bull that is huge and ugly! I always beg my family to make sure they lose!

It is obvious that my Dad gets his humor from his family. The Grahams are very funny people. Last year at our reunion there were some Amish people having a picnic nearby, so we invited them to play baseball. Now our claim to fame is that we are the only family to get creamed by the Amish!

Well, have a good week. We are busy here, cutting out quilts kits and cleaning out the basement...still. Many blessings ~ Kathie

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