Cruisin Family Reunion Theme

I’m so excited for our 2012 family reunion theme- cruisin’.  We will visit 6 different “ports” while camping out at Box Elder campground.

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Each of the 6 “original’ kids in my husband’s family will be responsible for one meal and a 2 hour block of time.  Every family is choosing a theme and planning their meal and activities around that theme.  During that 2 hours they can plan any activities, crafts or games they want.  This will give every family the opportunity to plan an activity they have always wanted to do or to choose a family reunion favorite.

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I’m pretty excited about this  reunion  format- I think it will relieve some of the stress I have when planning a reunion and give everyone a chance to make the reunion exactly the way they want.

Aunt MO

HINT: I got the backgrounds for these “beach” themed flyers from http://delightful-doodles.com/.

Memorial Day- the Start of Family Reunion Season

$5.00 off any Family Reunion Theme Package

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Memorial Day seems to mark the beginning  of summer and the family reunion season.   To help jumpstart your family reunion planning www.familyreunionhelper.com is offering $5.00 off any of our reunion themes for 5 short days- until June 1st.  (This includes only $19.99 theme packages)

First step is to select the family reunion theme packages that best fits your family.  Each reunion theme comes with free downloadable games, activities, recipes, printables and templates to simplify, inspire and  guide your reunion planning.

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You will need to  login or enter your credit card information before you can enter coupon code reunion2012 and receive $5.00 off your reunion package- but hurry, this coupon code expires June 1st 2012 at midnight!

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Happy Reunion Planning!

Make a Family Reunion Box

 

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I have a family reunion box.  I started the box because I got tired of  getting to the family reunion and finding out that I had forgotten to bring things like tape or scissors. 

It seems like my friends and family with trailers have everything stashed behind their trailer doors but I don’t have a trailer- I have a family reunion “box”.

Here’s what I’ve stashed inside my family reunion box: Gloves, rain ponchos,  first aid, tarp, all sizes of rope and string, plastic table cloths, collapsible shovel, plastic ware, serving spoons, can opener and rags.

I always keep things like balls of every size (including wiffle and volleyballs), horseshoes, marshmallow blow sticks, Frisbees, blindfolds, dice, huge checkers set, crayons and coloring books just in case we need some extra fun at our reunion.

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Inside the family reunion box I have a smaller box with lots of compartments where I keep things like tape, scissors, pens and pencils, markers, over the counter pain medicine, reflector tape, bug spray, sun screen, wet wipes, crayons, thumb tacks, toothpaste, new toothbrush, string, nails, extra lantern supplies, matches and batteries.

I usually have what we need at our family reunion in my box- except for this year- someone needed a stapler.  I didn’t have a stapler in my box this year but you can bet I will next year!

How do I generate funds to pay for family reunion expenses?

From Hope T., Location Oakland, TN. U.S.A

That’s a very good question, Hope.  It’s bad enough that family reunions take so much time but they can be expensive too.

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In 2010 our Stewart,  3 day reunion cost $16.00 a person which is a screaming good deal for those that attend.  We don’t charge for family reunion so the money has to come from somewhere and doing the math, I figure that we are going to need about $1,500 to pay for reunion expenses.

On both sides of our family, Grandma and Grandpa, Nana and Gramps have paid for the reunion location and accommodations which has really been a blessing. They pay for the campsite, the park or the condominium for the reunion but that still leaves the food (big expense) decorations, crafts, activities and prizes.

On the Wells side of our family we "divide and conquer". We rotate through all the original children (myself and my three brothers) the responsibility for the reunion and that family makes the assignments. They assign out meals and if you are responsible for breakfast then you provide the food, prepare it and clean up. Another family will be responsible for lunch and another dinner etc. This works out quite well as each family can choose for themselves how much work and expense they choose to take on. Assignments for other activities can also be made.

On the Stewart side of our family, Aunt Peggy Sue suggested that we hold a family auction. I have to admit, I wasn’t very excited about a family reunion auction. I just couldn’t get the vision for how an auction would work. Well, work it did. Our reunion auctions have paid for all the food, activities, prizes and crafts for the Stewart family reunion and we’ve been holding auctions for almost ten years.

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Everyone brings something to donate to the auction. Some family members work all year to make a quilt or other special item for the reunion, some offer services such as haircuts and some bake cookies, brownies or bring produce from their garden The best sellers at our reunion are always the crocheted dishtowels Grandma makes ($40.00- $80.00) and the hand-stitched heirloom quilts that Grandpa makes ($200.00- $400.00). Other popular items are restored and framed photos of ancestors and photo memory books- anything with sentimental value. No one counts the items someone brings or judges them on how much they bid, everyone does the best they can, sometimes more, sometimes less.

I have the great pleasure of going around and talking to people about family reunions and many have shared their ideas for paying for their reunion. 

Some families divide all expenses equally, or have everyone pay individually for expenses as they incur.

Collecting recipes and producing cookbooks and many other publishing projects such as directories, scrapbooks, and history books to sell at the reunion.

Pass the hat

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Food, beverage and white elephant sales. Food sales can net a nice profit if you consider carefully your reunion customers. A bake sale could feature desserts to eat right there as well as whole bakery specialties to take home.

Family yard sale

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Order personalized  (imprinted) products such as t-shirts, caps, coffee mugs, pens, pencils…and many more items to sell

Charge a traditional registration fee to families. Some families charge per family unit and others charge different prices based on age and family size. Average cost families are charging for their reunions are adults (ages 13 and over)- $70.00, children- $40.00. Pay electronically or elect to pay with a bank check or money order.

If some families can’t afford to pay then give them opportunities to provide service in exchange for paying fees- for instance could type in recipes for a family cookbook, maintain a family website or do family history research.

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The easiest way to reduce reunion expenses is to cut back on the time your reunion lasts. If you normally have a three day reunion cut back to two or just get together for a Saturday afternoon and evening. Make your meals potluck and enjoy the time, however short, that you have with each other.

With finances in mind, some families opt not to have reunions every year.

Ask for reunion dues and ask family members to send a portion of their dues on a quarterly basis so that it isn’t a one-time large payment.

A lot of people at my family reunion presentations hold a raffle of donated items from companies or family members during the reunion. Plane tickets or electronics are good money generating items. 

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Collect corporate donations or pledges for a fundraising event like a bike or 5K race. Corporations sometimes donate to large reunions where knowledge of the company’s name and contribution reaches many people.

Family reunion pocket change. Ask family members to save their pocket change during the year and bring it to the reunion. Count money by hand or take to a counting machine. Announce the grand total at your reunion.

Families all over the world are having family reunions and there are hundreds of ways to pay for them.  The most important thing is to choose the idea that you think will work best for your family and move forward.  As the years go by you can tweek your plan until it’s perfected.  Paying for a family reunion is a little like getting married- if you wait until you can afford it you’ll never do it. So make a plan, Hope, and do it! Thanks for asking the question and good luck!

Aunt MO

Glow in the Dark Whiffle (Wiffle) Ball for Your Family Reunion

My family loves playing Wiffle Ball. My brothers and I have played Wiffle Ball since we were just little kids living in Brigham City, Utah. Wiffle Ball is a fun game that is played like baseball but the balls and bats are made out of plastic. We were always sad when the sun went down and we had to go inside but no more- now you can play Glow in the Dark Wiffle Ball and the darker the better.

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We have played Glow-in-the Dark whiffle ball at several family reunions and it’s been a “hit” every time- literally. Here’s how to organize a Glow-in-the-Dark Wiffle Ball game for your family reunion or party.

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You will need:

2- 8 inch glow in the dark bracelets for everyone plus a few extras to stuff into the whiffle ball.

1- 22 inch glow in the dark necklace for each player

Light sticks- I like to use the emergency light sticks because they are bigger and brighter and more durable. You will use these sticks to mark the bases, pitching mound and home plate. Use a paper plate, carpet sample or rubber squares to mark the bases and set the light sticks in the middle.

Regular wiffle ball bats and balls- you don’t need to do anything with the bat. We have put glow in the dark tape on the bat and painted it with glow-in-the dark paint but you really don’t need it. cc You can also purchase a glow-in-the-dark bat and balls but it’s really not necessary.

You can use multi-colored glow bracelets and necklaces or use just two colors so that you can easily distinguish between the two teams during the game.

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Preparations:

Before the game snap 3 or 4 glow bracelets and stuff them inside the whiffle ball. Keep a few extra glow bracelets on hand because the bracelets will fall out of the whiffle ball during the game but that is just part of the fun.

Set out the bases as you would for a regular baseball game.

Divide the players into 2 equal teams. 9 players a team is the traditional standard, but for a glow-in-the-dark wiffle ball game the more the merrier.

Decide which team will take the offensive first. The offensive team will be batting and running the bases, while the defensive team will be pitching and trying to tag the offense with the ball.

Pitch the ball if you’re on defense. Pitching a wiffle ball will take some getting used to because of the way a wiffle ball moves through the air and when it’s full of glow stick it is even crazier.

Once the batter hits the wiffle ball, you’ll want to try to tag them with the ball to get an "out." When you get 3 outs, switch to offense.

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Switch places every 3 outs. You won’t necessarily want to play for 9 innings; everyone will want a turn to bat so it will depend on how large your teams are and how long you want the game to last.

The team with the most runs at the end of the Wiffle ball game is the winner. 

Planning a glow-in-the-dark wiffle ball game for your family reunion takes some preparation but it’s a fun and unusual game that everyone enjoys and is an interesting change from traditional night time family reunion activities.

Be aware when searching for Wiffle ball products, some people spell “Whiffle” ball with an “h” and some without- “Wiffle” ball.

You can purchase all of glow items mentioned in this article at the family reunion helper store along with other fun glow in the dark items.

T-Shirt Sayings and Slogan Ideas for Your Family Reunion

Choose a family reunion slogan to put on your reunion t-shirt. Wearing reunion t-shirts show identity and build family unity at your reunion. I’ve always thought it would be fun to have a family reunion “tour”shirt. Put a fun graphic or slogan on the front of your shirts and then on the back have 2011 Wells Reunion Tour and then list all the cities of where all your relatives live as the tour dates.

Check out this list of family reunion t-shirt slogans and sayings to find one that reflects the personality of your family the best.

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General Family Reunion Slogans or Sayings- Express Yourself

Wells Family- You’ve Seen the Rest Now Play With The Best
Hugs Are Fully Returnable
Home for the holidays
It’s Never Too Far For Family
Back to our Roots
Celebrate your heritage
Watering the Family Tree
Gathering around the family tree
Honoring family, mile after mile, year after year
A people without knowledge of their history… is like a tree without its roots
Love Still Keeps Us Together
A past to remember, a present to celebrate, a future to generate
All Roads Lead Home
When God Made “Smiths”, He Was Just Showing Off
Petersons- Takes one to know one
Larson family- Why be normal when you can be Extraordinary
Proud to Be On the Stewart Family Tree

Inspirational Family Reunion Slogans or Sayings

Don’t Forget to Remember
It’s not where you go or what you do It’s who is beside you that counts.
The Legacy Never Ends
New Vines from Strong Roots
Blessed by the Best, Pass It On!
We’re so elated ’cause we’re all related
In Time of Rest – in Time of Test – Family is Best.
Far Apart In Miles But Bound Together In Love.
Out of Africa
Unforgettable in So Many Ways
Zammekumme, translates as "coming together."
Bless Grandmothers! – They Minimize Our Failures and Magnify Our Successes
Reuniting the Past and Shaping the Future

Funny Family Reunion Slogans and Sayings

They’re dragging me to a party where I won’t know anyone and they call it a family reunion
It’s a Stewart thing- you just wouldn’t understand.
9 out of 10 monkeys insist we are not their descendants.
Stewart family reunion- don’t blame me
We put the FUN in Dysfunctional
From the Root to the Fruit. Ain’t we a Hoot
You Lost Me At Hello
Jensen Family- If we stopped arguing we wouldn’t talk at all
CRAZY is a relative term in my family
Places to Go, People to Annoy

Family Reunion Theme T-shirt Slogans and Sayings

Sport Theme
Petersons- The Race is On
Jensens- From Start To Finish – United!
Age and Treachery Will Always Beat Youth and Skill
The Older I Get the Better I Used to Be

Bootcamp or Patriotic Reunion Theme

United We Stand
Army: Be All That You’re Told to Be
God, Guts, Glory

Olympic Reunion Theme

2011 Family Reunion: Passing the Torch of Heritage
One team, one family, one win.
Our Olympic Rings Are Wagon Wheels

Western Reunion Theme

Round ‘em up
The herd is gathering.
Packers- How the West Was Won
What’s the Difference Between In-Laws and Outlaws? Outlaws Are Wanted

Family Reunion Picnic or Barbeque Theme

The Wells- Grillin’ & Chillin’

Mafia Family Reunion Theme

If You Can’t Beat Them, Arrange to Have Them Beaten

Pool or Water Family Reunion Theme

The Trouble With the Gene Pool Is That There’s No Lifeguard.
No water too cool for a family so hot
Jensen Family Reunion- a whale of good time

Redneck Family Reunion Theme

If It’s Called Tourist Season, Why Can’t We Hunt Them?

Cruise or Pirate Reunion Theme

Hijinks on the High Seas
Surrender the Bounty
Aaarggh!
We treasure our family

Family Reunion Quotes

 

I love good quotes.  I like to end each of my blogs with a quote about families or family reunions. The quotes I am including in this blog are not quotes I have written but quotes from people with minds immeasurably smarter than mine.  They may help you as you plan your family reunion as you use them in family newsletters, invitations and posters. 

I have listed my top ten family reunion quotes at the first of this blog and encourage you to read to the bottom of this blog so you don’t miss out on a good laugh with “Funny Family Reunion Quotes”.

quill

Top Ten Family Reunion Quotes

#1 “A tree without roots will fall over” -unknown

#2 "How will our children know who they are if they do not know where they came from." unknown

#3 "Heirlooms we don’t have in our family. But stories we’ve got."         -Rose Cherin

#4 “I wish I could relate to the people I’m related to.” -Jeff Foxworthy

#5 “When we die we become ‘stories’ in the minds of other people.” -Unknown

#6 “This packrat has learned that what the next generation will value most is not what we owned, but the evidence of who we were and the tales of how we loved. In the end, it’s the family stories that are worth the storage.” -Ellen Goodman

#7 “If you were going to die soon and had only one phone call you could make, who would you call and what would you say? And why are you waiting?” -Stephen Levine

#8 “The lack of emotional security of our American young people is due, I believe, to their isolation from the larger family unit. No two people – no mere father and mother – as I have often said, are enough to provide emotional security for a child. He needs to feel himself one in a world of kinfolk, persons of variety in age and temperament, and yet allied to himself by an indissoluble bond which he cannot break if he could, for nature has welded him into it before he was born.”
- Pearl S. Buck

#9 “Human beings are the only creatures on earth that allow their children to come back home.” -Bill Cosby

#10 “ The reason grandparents and grandchildren get along so well is that they have a common enemy.” -Sam Levenson

Family Reunion Quotes

"In every conceivable manner, the family is link to our past, bridge to our future." -Alex Haley

“The great gift of life is to be intimately acquainted with people you might never even introduce yourself to, had life not done it for you.”     -Kendall Hailey

"Generations pass like leaves fall from our family tree. Each season new life blossoms and grows benefiting from the strength and experience of those who went before."  -Heidi Swapp

"If you don’t believe in ghosts, you’ve never been to a family reunion." -Ashleigh Brilliant

"Family faces are magic mirrors. Looking at people who belong to us, we see the past, present and future. We make discoveries about ourselves."  -Gail Lumet Buckley, writer

“Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.” – Jane Howard

"Like branches on a tree, our lives may grow in different directions yet our roots remain as one."  -Author Unknown

You can kiss your family and friends good-bye and put miles between you, but at the same time you carry them with you in your heart, your mind, your stomach, because you do not just live in a world but a world lives in you. -Frederick Buechner

“It is important for us … to cultivate in our own family a sense that we belong together eternally, that whatever changes outside our home, there are fundamental aspects of our relationship which will never change. We ought to encourage our children to know their relatives. We need to talk of them, make effort to correspond with them, visit them, join family organizations, etc.” -Pres. Spencer W. Kimball

"People are generally irrational, unreasonable and selfish. They deserve to be loved, anyway." -Mother Theresa

“Family faces are magic mirrors. Looking at people who belong to us, we see the past, present, and future.” – Gail Lumet Buckley

“A good way to learn to love our relatives is to spend time together in well-planned family reunions. A family reunion can be a very personal and privileged gathering. If you have never organized your family for a reunion, start now—you will receive joy far beyond your expectations. Yes, there will be discouragements. Some family members will say they don’t have time or that they are too busy. But the rewards more than compensate for the discouragements.” -Alma Heaton

"The future belongs to those who give the next generation reason for hope." – Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

“Family is essential because we all yearn to feel like we belong to something greater than ourselves.” -Laura Ramirez

Family Quotes

“Having children makes you no more a parent than having a piano makes you a pianist.-Michael Levine

“Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to take you in.” -Robert Frost

“Watching your daughter being collected by her date feels like handing over a million dollar Stradivarius to a gorilla.”-Jim Bishop

"The best effect of fine persons is felt after we have left their presence." -Ralph Waldo Emerson

I don’t care how poor a man is; if he has family, he’s rich. -M*A*S*H, Colonel Potter

“The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other’s life.” -Richard Bach

“Blood’s thicker than water, and when one’s in trouble it’s best to seek out a relative’s open arms.” – Author Unknown

“To us, family means putting your arms around each other and being there.” -Barbara Bush

“Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them.” -James Arthur Bladwin

The past is not dead. It isn’t even past. -William Faulkner

"Perhaps the greatest social service that can be rendered by anybody to this country and to mankind is to bring up a family." -G.B. Shaw

“Our most important and powerful assignments are in the family. They are important because the family has the opportunity at the start of a child’s life to put feet firmly on the path home.” -Henry B. Eyring

“Families that play together stay together, especially when their play is uplifting and wholesome. Family vacations, holidays, birthday celebrations, and other activities build strong bonds and feelings of self-worth. The phrase “Remember when we…” is sure to bring love and laughter in the years to come.” -Unknown

"Be a storehouse of happy memories." -Gretchen Rubin

"Let us open wide the windows of our hearts, that each family member may feel welcome and ‘at home.” -Thomas S. Monson

"The family – that dear octopus from whose tentacles we never quite escape, nor, in our inmost hearts, ever quite wish to." -Dodie Smith

"Our family is a circle of strength and love, with every birth and every union, the circle will grow, every joy shared adds more love, every crisis faced together, makes the circle stronger." -Unknown

“I grew up with six brothers. That’s how I learned to dance -waiting for the bathroom.” -Bob Hope

"Our most treasured family heirlooms are our sweet family memories.” -Unknown

“Our most basic instinct is not for survival but for family. Most of us would give our own life for the survival of a family member, yet we lead our daily life too often as if we take our family for granted.” -Paul Pearshall

“Nobody has ever before asked the nuclear family to live all by itself in a box the way we do. With no relatives, no support, we’ve put it in an impossible situation.” -Margaret Mead

When you look at your life, the greatest happinesses are family happinesses. -Joyce Brothers

“The family. We were a strange little band of characters trudging through life sharing diseases and toothpaste, coveting one another’s desserts, hiding shampoo, borrowing money, locking each other out of our rooms, inflicting pain and kissing to heal it in the same instant, loving, laughing, defending, and trying to figure out the common thread that bound us all together.” -Erma Bombeck

Family Heritage and Genealogy Quotes

I trace my family history so I will know who to blame.
-Unknown

"The measure of a woman’s character is not what she gets from her ancestors, but what she leaves her descendants." -Unknown

"He who plants a tree plants hope." – Lucy Laroom

"Genealogy, n. An account of one’s descent from an ancestor who did not particularly care to trace his own. " -Ambrose Bierce

“When our hearts turn to our ancestors, something changes inside us. We feel part of something greater than ourselves. Our inborn yearnings for family connections are fulfilled when we are linked to our ancestors…” -Russell M. Nelson

"We are who we are because they were who they were. . ." Unknown

“Genealogists never die, they just lose their roots.” -Unknown

“If you cannot get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance.” -George Bernard Shaw

"If you don’t recount your family history, it will be lost. Honor your own stories and tell them too. The tales may not seem very important, but they are what binds families and makes each of us who we are. " -Madeleine Engle

What greater thing is there for human souls than to feel that they are joined for life – to be with each other in silent unspeakable memories.”
- George Eliot

Genealogy: A hay stack full of needles. It’s the threads I need.              -Unknown

“Every man is a quotation from all his ancestors.”  -Ralph Waldo Emerson

"To our children, we give two things, one is roots, the other is wings." -Unknown

Genealogy: Collecting dead relatives and sometimes a live cousin!        -Unknown

"To forget one’s ancestors is to be a brook without a source, a tree without a root." -Chinese proverb

Genealogy: Where you confuse the dead and irritate the living.            -Unknown

"The kind of ancestors we had is not as important as the kind descendants or ancestors have." -Unknown

“Research: What I’m doing, when I don’t know what I’m doing.”           -Unknown

“Take nothing but ancestors, leave nothing but records. “                      -Unknown

“A family tree can wither if nobody tends it’s roots.” -Unknown           

“When we die we become ‘stories’ in the minds of other people.” -Unknown

“We all grow up with the weight of history on us. Our ancestors dwell in the attics of our brains as they do in the spiraling chains of knowledge hidden in every cell of our bodies.”
- Shirley Abbott

“Heredity: Everyone believes in it until their children act like fools!” Unknown

“Kinship: it’s all relative!” -Unknown

“When you search for ancestors, you find great friends! “ -Unknown

“Still trying to decorate my family tree. “ -Unknown

“It’s hard to be humble with ancestors like mine!” -Unknown

Funny Family Reunion Quotes

"There is no such thing as "fun for the whole family."-Jerry Seinfeld

“Humans are not proud of their ancestors, and rarely invite them round to dinner. -Douglas Adams”

“You Might Be a Redneck If…Your family tree does not fork.”
-Jeff Foxworthy

“Any family tree produces some lemons, some nuts and a few bad apples.” -Unknown

"Some family trees have beautiful leaves, and some have just a bunch of nuts. Remember, it is the nuts that make the tree worth shaking." -Unknown

Shake your family tree and watch the nuts fall! -Author Unknown

“Friends come and go, but relatives tend to accumulate.” -Author Unknown

“I don’t have to look up my family tree, because I know that I’m the sap.” –Fred Allen

“Always be nice to your children because they are the ones who will choose your rest home.” -Phyllis Diller

“My childhood should have taught me lessons for my own parenthood, but it didn’t because parenting can be learned only by people who have no children.” -Bill Cosby

“Important families are like potatoes. The best parts are underground." -Francis Bacon

“I think my family tree is a few branches short of full bloom.” -Author Unknown

“A family reunion is an effective form of birth control.” -Author Unknown

“A family is a unit composed not only of children but of men, women, an occasional animal, and the common cold.” –Ogden Nash

“If you ever start feeling like you have the goofiest, craziest, most dysfunctional family in the world, all you have to do is go to a state fair. Because five minutes at the fair, you’ll be going, ‘you know, we’re alright. We are dang near royalty. “ -Jeff Foxworthy

“Never let an angry sister comb your hair.” – Patricia McCann

“Parents are not interested in justice; they’re interested in peace and quiet.” – Bill Cosby.

“My family is really boring. They have a coffee table book called ‘Pictures We Took Just to Use Up the Rest of the Film.” Penelope Lombard

"Reunion after long separation is even better than one’s wedding night." -Chinese Proverb

“Every family tree has some sap in it.” -Author Unknown

Aunt MO

…After all, all he did was string together a lot of old well-known quotations. - H.L. Mencken on Shakespeare

10 Fun Family Reunion Ideas- part 1

I’m not going to say these are my “Top Ten” family reunion ideas but if I made a “Top Ten list these ideas would certainly be in the running.  However, if I had to choose my number one favorite family reunion idea it just might be #1 in this list- the Cat-Eye Hike!

Family Reunion Idea #1- CAT-EYE HIKE

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This is a hike that is best done when it is very dark. Cut cat’s-eye shapes from reflective tape, available at bike stores or RV stores. It is best to set up your hike the night before guiding groups on the hike. Put cat eyes on markers or apply cat eyes to index cards and then use the cards to mark the trail.   You can find more information about Cat-Eye Hikes in the “Caveman” family reunion theme in the family reunion helper store.

Family Reunion Idea #2- BEADS!

Oh how I love beads- pony bead to be exact.  When used as rewards they are great motivators.  We have used beads as rewards at “Boot Camp” and “Beach” themed family reunions.  Award beads when family members complete certain tasks or activities.

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Family Reunion Idea 3- “A GAME OF CLUE”

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Murder Mystery Game for Your Family Reunion. This is a family friendly murder mystery game that has been simplified so that it will work for most ages at your family reunion. If you want to make it more difficult you will need to make adjustments to the clues. It is very important to have a practice with your cast before you present the game. (We practiced for about an hour and went through the scenes three times working out all the details) I sent the cast a copy of the script about a month before our family reunion and asked them to get their own costumes and props. I did not tell them who committed the crime until the practice. Most of our actors used their scripts and did not memorize their parts.

This murder mystery game includes the script, score cards, character name tags and lots of pictures for costume ideas and is available as  free download at http://familyreunionhelper.com/a_game_of_clue.php

Family Reunion Idea #4- WHEEL OF DOOM

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For a girls camp my daughter attended, she was asked to create a “Wheel of Doom”.  The idea was that the girls would spin the wheel to determine what kind of utensil they would eat with for dinner.  The girls had so much fun with the wheel that we decided to use it at our family reunion.   We used it several times and the family loves it every time!

Our Wheel of Doom is made out of piece of particle board.   You can easily change the wheel to fit whatever your family reunion theme is.  We printed off pictures that go along with each category  and taped them to the wheel.  You can even repaint the wheel for each reunion theme.  For instance we painted the board in different camouflage colors for the Boot Camp family reunion and we painted it with glitter paint for the Medieval family reunion.   As you can see, our wheel is not too fancy but it’s given us some fun and SUSPENFUL moments at our family reunions.  It’s fun to watch the children as they anxiously wait to see where the arrow will land. 

You can read more  about the “Wheel of Doom” on Aunt Mo’s blog at http://familyreunionhelper.com/blog/2010/03/wheel-of-doom/

Family Reunion Idea #5- HERITAGE COLORING BOOK

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Make a family heritage coloring book about the life of one of your ancestors.  If you’re an artist then this is probably going to be a fun and easy project for you but if you have little artistic ability then this can be quite a challenge.  To make my Heritage Coloring books I searched through old coloring books, magazines and of course the web to find “pioneerish” looking pictures and adapted my story to the pictures.  Although a Heritage coloring book is a lot of work it is a wonderful way to share the story of your ancestor’s life’s with the younger ones in your family.  You can find more information about about Heritage coloring books and resources for making one in the “Heritage” family reunion theme by clicking here.

Our Family Reunion is Going Green

 

image We had our annual family reunion planning meeting and we all agreed- it’s time to “Go Green”! Since this is a new thing for our family reunion we planned to make changes to our reunion by using the  Three R’s of Going Green- Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.

Reduce or prevent waste to reduce greenhouse gases by using less and throwing away less. Instead of using lots of paper and plastic products we are going to use mesh “dunk” bags and each family member at our reunion will wash their own dishes.

To do this, we are assigning each person to bring their own mesh bag, utensils, plate, bowl and cup to our family reunion.  After each meal, we will fill three dishpans with water. In one we will put liquid detergent, bleach in the other and leave the final bin full of clear water. Each family member will then wash their dishes in the detergent water, then the bleach water and finally the clear water.  All wet dishes be put in a mesh bag and then hung on a line outside.

Mesh Dunk bags are available at  http://www.outdoorpros.com/ for under $4.00 or may be available at your local dollar store.

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Reuse products by giving them to other people who want or need them instead of throwing them away.

It seems we are always finding half full water bottles at our family reunion.  This year we are making plans to reuse water bottles.  Family members will write their name on each water bottle and then refill it with water from coolers when it is empty.  We’re hoping that one bottle a day is all that each person will need.

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Recycle items made of materials such as glass, metal, plastic, or paper.

We have always collected empty aluminum cans for recycling at our family reunions but this year we’re planning to add other items to our recycling list.  At our 2011 family reunion we will also include a container for paper and one for plastic.

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I know that there are other ideas we could use to “Go Green” at our family reunion but I feel pretty good about the three changes we are planning on implementing in 2011. 

Aunt MO

"Today’s mighty oak is just yesterday’s nut that held its ground."
- Anonymous