Fun at Family Reunions

I spent this past weekend attending a family reunion. The reunion itself, with our extended family members, was only about two hours long. But, for the second year in a row, attending the reunion gave my sisters and I an excuse to spend extended time together with each other and with our mom. In theory, we shouldn’t need such excuses, and we have worked hard at getting the four of us together at least once a year for a few days for quite some time now. But with the four of us now living in four different parts of the country, we will take all the excuses we can find.

In addition to spending more time with each other we spent additional time with my mom’s only surviving sister and the cousin that we’re all closest to (who both live in a fifth state).  All of that extended the “reunion time” by several days in each direction – giving us the “excuse” to spend a week away from our respective jobs and just enjoying each other’s company.

A Great Way to Spend a Weekend

It was a great weekend – fairly low key, with little planned outside the reunion time itself. But around that we ate together and played together (we’re all big board game and card game players!). And we swam together and walked together.

No History Lessons This Time

And while I am a historian by nature, and love learning the history of the areas I visit, I don’t have to turn every trip into a history lesson. (My children may have doubted that fact when they were growing up, but that was a different time with different priorities!) I certainly want to become immersed in the history related to many of my trips, but this wasn’t one of those times.  This was just a trip to relax and to enjoy each other’s company.

Family Games

I was struck by one comment that was made at the reunion. With twelve children, I’m accustomed to being the outlier when it comes to family size. But I do have a cousin who also has a large family. When the topic of a conversation turned to games my cousin mentioned that because of the younger children they didn’t play many games with the older children. Since the youngest ones would either want to play with the games that were above their heads and would likely get ahold of the pieces and ruin the games.

Legos v. Duplos

The comment reminded me of a friend in Germany many years ago that didn’t plan to buy actual Legos (instead of Duplos) until her youngest child was old enough to safely play with Legos. Since there is a twenty-one year gap between my oldest and youngest, my oldest children would never have played with Legos.  And they would never have played some really great games had I waited on those. (You can see some of our favorites on my other blog,  at For us, dealing with the ramifications of Legos and games aimed at older kids and adults was worth it.

The Value of Games

Throughout my life, games have been a big part of how our family relaxed and related. And that’s something I have happily passed on to my children, and as they get older, hope to help pass on to the grandchildren. This week’s reunion time has been another wonderful reminder of how much joy families can get from engaging in games together.

Happy playing!