Tuesday, July 28, 2009

williams family reunions

{that's me there on the end, with a boy, mark harrison in my lap, i'm the one not smiling}

there are only a few things that my family did traditionally...spend summers in puerto rico and go for a couple of weeks to a family reunion in the chicago area. after 15 years its hard for a summer to go by and not reflect on those trips.

My dad's side of the family began all of this in order to celebrate my grandfather's birthday. his 7 children would come to celebrate in the home that they grew up in during the summers in chicago. much loved 601 carpenter ave in oak park, was were it all first began.....course i'm sure it started way before i was born but this is my memory so we will start there. after a couple of years of kids sleeping on the screened porch, it was decided the Williams' Gang needed a bigger place to gather

golf and music....were the only priorities of this family....really my grandfather. did i mention that we have a family band? oh its just as amazing as it sounds. grandpa at the piano, and all of his kids playing various instruments. their specialty, dixieland music. anyway, that's when we started to go to Wisconsin.

our first place was lake delevan, wi, the reader house....there is nothing like a basement full of 15 cots for all the grand kids....the ones who weren't babies. we made up dance moves, laughed about farts {excuse my lack of tact, we were ages 6-12, it was funny} tried to learn all the lyrics to songs, talk about our favorite kinds of dogs, and look through each others yearbooks. great fun! {there we all are, in the picture above, the ones that were around then}

however we soon out grew that one as well. with at least 20something first cousins, aunts and uncles, 2nd cousins, 3rd cousins coming to these things it was easily 100 people or so there. so that is what brings me to this picture. now we were all fairly modest families, so getting to stay in what we all called a mansion, was unbelievably exciting.

a wing for all the kids?? yes please! we loved it! looking at this picture brings back so many memories we shared with fire works, fishing, Starbucks, walking, horseback riding, lightening bugs, family pictures {ugh if only i could get my hands on one of those...priceless} riding the boat, tubing, swimming, senior pictures, reuniting, and sharing our lives.

this, {for whatever reason i can't get a bigger picture! :(} is the man for all the reunions. he is a talented and graceful man whom we all love and adore. here he is practicing for the music for later that night.

and 5 out of the 7 brothers and sisters all in action. the williams band in all their splendor. take it all it for a moment....nothing beats a childhood full of musicians, esp when you are not one.

these are the nights that i know will stay forever on our minds and hearts. we all live very different lives all over the country, and even the world. we don't get to see each other every summer. we don't have yearbooks {well some} to share and show each other. only the thing is when you share so much of your childhood {or all of it} you don't have to. everyone misses everyone, but we all pick up right where we left off....we are williams' its just how we do.

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