August 6, 2012

The One with the 75th Surprises and a Reunion

This past weekend I got to spend lots of quality time with family members from all over the country--Florida, Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio, and more! My husband didn't get to come with me because of church responsibilities, but I am thankful that he was willing to let me go on my own for the 3 nights. 

I left town at 7:40am Thursday morning and arrived to my mom and dad's house by 10:45am. Mom and I had lots of catching up to do and managed to squeeze in time for her to try on all the clothes I brought her from the LeBaron's yard sale. By 12:30 we were starving and excited to meet up with Grams and Chuck at Steak 'N Shake (the usual!) along with my Aunt Wendy, whom they had just picked up from the airport. Our meal arrived very slowly, but we enjoyed laughter and fellowship for quite some time. 

Mom and I stopped to see Grandma Mary for a while and by the time we got home, Aunt Linda had arrived from Pennsylvania. For the next few days, it was 5 Marr women (Grandma, her three daughters, and one granddaughter) ripping the roads together, talking over each other, laughing hysterically, and eating far too many sweets. Perfect, right? :)


We had all come together for our Kister Family Reunion (my great grandmother and her siblings' families), but my aunts and uncle had also planned to surprise Grandma and Chuck with a 75th birthday party including friends from church along with immediate family. Since her birthday was in March and his is in September, they didn't suspect a thing!

Three Generations--Each the Oldest Child. Dangerous, eh?
(We don't look related, do we?) 
this beautiful cake was filled with strawberries and custard. yes, for real.

Grandma Marr and her 4 kids:
Scott, Karen (my mom), Wendy, Linda

Proud to be their daughter

Cousins! Ryan and Kalie are my Uncle Scott's kids. 

Enjoying the Party
My Aunt Wendy and I got to spend the most quality time together this weekend, setting up for the party while the others occupied Grandma, shopping for party paraphernalia, and going on multiple walks together (to work off all that food!). She even supported me on my 10 mile training run early Saturday morning by biking alongside me. Having her there for company and encouragement made the run truly enjoyable. I just wish she and I lived closer together!

What's a party without 14 pounds of M&M's???!!!

Looking through old family photos

Kids Game Time by Brandy
(I always loved the egg toss when I was little.)
While the kids played kids inside, many of us grown ups played Corn Hole outside. Dad and I played against Mom and Aunt Wendy, and we lost big time. (It came as a surprise to us all. :D)  I was terrible, let's just leave it at that. My mom, on the other hand, had an extreme case of awesome as she got a "hole in one" almost every time. She wow-ed us all

Erin and Melanie: cousins and classmates 
Another person I was happy to see was my cousin, Erin. She and I graduated from high school together and shared many classes and experiences during our 4 years at ESHS--and we hadn't seen each other since graduation in 2004!! We didn't realize until 11th grade that we were related, even though we had both been at many family reunions as young kids. I'm not sure how to put this in technical genealogy terms (can someone help?), but her great grandpa and my great grandma were siblings

So the generations looks like this: 
Earl Kister      -    Mildred Kister 
Barb Kray       -     Marilyn Marr 
Julie Kray-Cook     -     Karen Fish
Erin Cook      -      Melanie Eccles

Grandma and her husband, Chuck, brother Norman and sister Phyllis

My Grams and me
I love that I was able to spend all this quality time with my family, both intermediate and extended. It was a wonderful, wild, exhausting, worth-it weekend. 


  1. Great pictures. You look fabulous, Mel! And now I want some M&Ms. :)

  2. Nice job on all the pictures, Mel. Thanks for taking all those. As far as you and Erin's relation goes, where you have Aunt Betty Kister?, it should be Barb Kray. Barb is dtr to Betty and Earl Kister. Barb had Julie, and then Julie had Erin . Hope that helps. Love, mom


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