Holmes Family Reunion
I have been looking forward to this day for several weeks now. Actually, I guess it's been more like months. You may recall that Dad's side of the family has reunions on the regular. So often in fact that they occur twice a year: the full one in Arkansas (that I need to be better about getting to) and the mini-reunion in Kansas City. What can we say? We all enjoy each other so much that once a year wasn't enough. Well Mom's side hadn't had an official one in so long that I can't remember. Therefore, the news of this one was a welcome sight.
Although it has been a long time coming, it wasn't difficult to remember the last one the Holmes side had a reunion. Even though I really wouldn't call it that. When Aunt Ceil passed away last year family came from far and wide to attend. There were cousins that I didn't even know I had as well as ones that I hadn't seen in years that showed up. It was the first time in several years that folks had gotten together like that. Funerals have a tendency to do that. But it also inspired some cousins to get more proactive about organizing a formal reunion to make sure that a funeral isn't the only time we get together like that.
It all started when several of us started getting messages on Facebook from our cousin Quentin. I have to admit that I had no idea he was when I got that first message. I wasn't alone. But that was the whole purpose of a reunion. We needed to get together to fellowship to reconnect. To get to know the family that many of us didn't even know we had. Friending on Facebook was a good start, but it just doesn't beat getting together in person.
The first leg of the reunion was a meet and greet at the Quindaro Community Center. I was familiar with that location even though I had never officially been inside. It was one of the large landmarks located on the route I was accustomed to travelling the short distance from Popoo and Grandma's house to Grandma Turner's house back in the day. It was always fenced off preventing entry so I just never knew that it was still open for functions.
The start time for the event was 7pm. That wasn't soon enough for me. I left for Kansas City at 8am to get down in time for everything. For some reason I thought things kicked off at 6. Yes, I know that that departure time would still get me there with several hours to spare. All that meant was that it would be more quality time that I could get in with Grandma. The smile on her face when G and I pulled up was priceless. The meal that she cooked up on the spot for us was even better. Don't even get me started on her trademark iced tea. Best. Tea. EVER!
As for the meet and greet, it was just what I expected with both a little more and a little less. I knew there would be a mix of cousins I have known for a while, those I hadn't seen a while and those I had never met. I was determined to step outside of my comfort zone to approach those faces that did not look familiar at all. Those name tags we wore really helped. Probably for them too. I just wish we had more time so I could have met more folks. So glad there's still two more days for it to happen so I get to know more of my new cousins better.
Now you KNOW I had to go photo crazy at an event of this magnitude. If for some reason I didn't get my normal variety of photos, Mom was making sure that I did. She didn't have to though because I wasn't missing this golden photo opportunity for nothing. Got another new memory card just for it and everything. I stayed up extra late editing the photos to make sure that I could get them published right away. I even created a photo album out here for the occasion. And you know that a new photo album out here is rare for me since I've been using The Book and Smugmug so much. So check out Holmes Reunion: Day One. Then get ready for even more yet to come in the next couple of days...