Friday, July 24, 2009

It's the Allan Graham Reunion time!

This year is my family's year to host our annual reunion, so we're very busy preparing for tonight's picnic and tomorrow's all-day bash. Folks are coming from New York to Tennessee. One of our favorite games is the "Guess how many skittles are in the jar." How many do YOU think? I'll give you the answer on Sunday...or whenever I recover from tomorrow.

What will the prize be for the unfortunate winner? They have to take home a huge, ugly, ceramic, red bull. That is one picture I hope to take! Everyone dreads that their child will be the unlucky winner:-)

I googled Graham reunion and came up with hundreds of reunions...but none of them were ours! So I changed my title to the Allan Graham reunion. Allan Graham is my great-grandfather. The families of Allan's ten children take turns hosting once every ten years.

Everyone has funny "picnic" things that they drag out of the pantry. A few of mine are this napkin holder which can hold its own in a strong breeze,
my placecards that I use to identify foods (diet jello and sugar jello, regular and decaf coffee, etc.),
and my cute little jar of toothpicks, thanks to old folks and corn on the cob. Actually, there is one other fly swatter.
My mother is making many dishes of Chocolate Eclair dessert (I'll show pictures of hers later) that is as good as it sounds. We got this recipe 30 years ago from a friend/neighbor that we recently reconnected with this week on facebook!!

My dessert contribution is Sugarfree and Regular Jello Jigglers. I know it's basic, but with the 89 degree heat and high humidity, I thought both diabetics and children would like this. But I wish I had a bigger refrigerator for all those 9x13 dishes! I made four batches last night, and six batches this morning.

That box holds my 20# of fresh blueberries that I will dump into a large 2-gallon stoneware bowl. You should see the size of those blueberries. Better yet--you should taste the sweetness! My children and I ate one box throughout this week, and we are already looking forward to the second box!

WARNING: To Deb and Simba, and any other friends who don't do snakes, do not read any further!!

Last night around dusk, Ruthie came running in with one of our favorite yells," Snake Alert!" Sure enough, this 4-ft black snake was making its way up our porch.
In hindsight, I should've pushed him off at this point. But I was fascinated/scared stiff.
It was also fascinating to watch him slide through my birdfeeder and on up to the eaves. It was at this point that I tried to stop him with my broom, but was unsuccessful. So now we have a snake somewhere up in the eaves. Hopefully the heat will drive him out.

Everyone is home now, Sarah from Alabama, Mike from California. We are busy assembling everything for the picnics. I have to admit that I am deep in nostalgia. How did my great aunts prepare all those tasty homemade dishes (I remember trays of lasagne, rich desserts, wonderful variations of zucchini casseroles, etc.) without ziplok baggies and Dollar Stores? We even had gallons of homemade ice cream that we took turns churning. (In those days, every family I knew owned a wood bucket ice cream maker. Now I don't know one.)

I'll be taking lots of pictures if the camera doesn't slide out of my sweaty hands from the heat:-) My brothers got up at 5 am this morning to put the 200 lb pig on the smoker/roaster. Better them than me.

Enjoy your weekend. If you live locally and can get on base, please come by for a visit. We're at the beach house.

Many blessings ~ Kathie


Deb said...

Hi Kathie ~ I'm assuming I'm the Deb you're talking about who doesn't do snakes! But maybe there's another smart Deb out there, too, who doesn't want to be near them! LOL! :) Even if it's a black snake and not poisonous...there's no telling what a snake bite would do to me! I don't want to find out. :)

I hope you have a wonderful time at your reunion! Sure looks like plenty of food. Sarah is making a big punch bowl of dessert for church on Sunday; if it turns out okay, we'll post a picture.

Anonymous said...

Looks like a fun reunion. My guess on the jar full of sweets is 290. I'll look forward to the answer and the pictures. I wonder is you mom's dessert is the same recipe I have. It's an old favorite around here.