Dear Family members and friends,
Hello on this Friday after the family reunion. The dust has settled and we are relaxed a bit after all the energy and effort and hard work that went into the family reunion last Saturday in Anacortes, Washington. It was a very special occasion, as anyone who was there can tell you. 29 of us were together, about half of us from in and around Anacortes, and the other half from around western Washington, the Kansas City area, Weatherford and Lubbock, Texas, and San Francisco and Dorrington, California.
Special thanks go to Barbara and Maida Shepard and the other locals who provided places to stay and helped make all the arrangements. And to (Gary's) Cindy for the keepsake cups that were provided for the occasion. And to Kim Clark who came from so far away with her husband Jeff and brought lots of old photos.
We shared a wonderful meal and visited with some family members we don't get to see very often. Some of us even met other family members for the first time -- new spouses, young children, distant relatives. We looked at lots of old and new pictures -- some black and white photographs from 50 or more years ago, some digital pictures in a PowerPoint presentation, and some baby pictures that made us belly laugh when they were identified.
We acknowledged the oldest and youngest persons among us (the winners were Maida Shepard of Anacortes and her great grandson Nate Sauvage of Weatherford, Texas); as well as those who had come the farthest (Jeff and Kim Clark of Blue Springs, Missouri). But most of all we simply celebrated the family that we are -- very diverse in age, vocation, appearance, life style and home location, but united as one in love and respect for the ties that bind us and the shared history that brings us together.
Family Faces. And of course we took pictures. Lots of pictures. I had a difficult time selecting just two for this posting (more will be forthcoming). My camera was one of the few that did NOT get a picture of the WHOLE group, so I need Jeff or Jerry or Gary or someone else to send me a picture or two that was taken of the entire family group. I want to share that picture in the next posting. Would one or more of you please do that? I would appreciate it very much.
The first picture today shows Maida Shepard and her children and their spouses (click on the picture to enlarge it). In the back row, left to right, are Pam and Russ Shepard, Barbara Shepard, Darrell and Mary Shepard, and Cathrina and Jerry Clark. On the front row are Cindy and Steve Shepard (me), and Maida, Gary and Cindy Shepard. You can see from the smiles -- and from Darrell's imitation of the historic "Russell pose" (hint: the hands tell it all) - that we had WAY too much fun with this photo session, as we did with the entire day! ;-)
The other picture shows three of the beautiful teenagers that were with us, Linda Shepard of Anacortes (Russ and Pam's little girl) on the left, and then Lyndsey and Mandi Aquiningoc (Kerri's daughters, Gary's granddaughters) from Weatherford, Texas.
If you would like a CD of the Powerpoint Presentation that I showed at the reunion, please send me your physical address and I will send you a copy. It shows about 200 old and new family pictures, including the oldest family picture I have, of Edmond Owens, who was my grandad's great grandfather on his mother's side.
Do you have other comments or reflections or pictures of the family reunion? Send them my way and I will be glad to pass them on to everyone else.
It came to my attention that I missed the birthday of Nathaniel Sauvage, who turned 6 years old on the 7th of this month. Happy Birthday to Nate Sauvage!, whose proud parents are James and Kelly Shepard Sauvage of Weatherford Texas. Any other birthdays I missed?