Archive for July, 2013

Family is everything.

The chairs were in a half moon facing the lake and were filled with the Alderman Clan, just enjoying reminiscing and the cool breeze. The Spanish moss on the majestic bald cypress trees was gently swaying to that breeze. Others were in the screen in porch doing the same. The young ones were fishing for red bellies and channel cats around the dock and out by the cypress knees that were standing like stalagmites in and out of the water. A few were taking a tour of the lake being chauffeured by Irv in his boat. It’s Saturday evening and the Alderman reunion was just winding down. 


This year seem more relaxed that most, at least to me. More time was spent just sitting around remembering our past, enjoying the present and each other. With politics left at home, the mood was warm and pleasant. Family from Texas, North and South Carolina, Virginia, Alabama, Georgia and Florida gathers each year at this time, starting on Friday night at Irvin and Carol’s home on LakeBlackshear. The menu was fried chicken, baked beans, potato salad, chocolate cake, blue berry cobbler and sweet tea to name just a few wonderful southern dishes on the table. The house and grounds were filled with children, our promise of tomorrow that the clan will live on. The only sad moments were in reflecting on those who are no longer with us and of those that can no longer make the trip.


Saturday noon was the big dinner, (down south, dinner is the noon meal), at PutneyCommunity Center, where Terry, Carol Sue and the gang had the place all decorated with a beach décor including a water slide for the kids. The menu was much like the night before only much larger with even a larger crowd. As always there were drawing for door prizes and auctions for items family members had made, created or painted. It was there that I out bid one of my grandsons in law for a sign my daughter, Missy made that needed to call my front porch home. We only have one auctioneer and that would be Rusty. No one can do it like him. Again the time spent together was priceless. Every year we have family members we had not seen in years come, which is always great. This year we got to say hi to Aunt Nell back home in North Carolina over the phone, but we had four of the original Alderman Sisters this year, with my mom, Carolyn, Aunt Mary Ann, Aunt Virginia and Aunt Betty. It was good to see Cousin Jimmy and his wife Helen, he, Cousin Dewey and I were in Viet Nam about the same time, where Jimmy was wound in the leg.


Saturday afternoon was spent resting or napping for most, then back at Irvin and Carols for more of the same. BJ and I came up on Thursday and stayed with them. Candi and the girls came in Friday and stayed in their bunk house. The two girls thought that was cool. All the kids that came loved fishing at the lake and most all of them caught fish. Kaylee caught 13 fish and Katelynn caught the biggest. I spent a lot of time baiting hooks and taking off fish after my brother Danny ran me out of his favorite fishing spot. Conversation was good as usual during which Bobby and Corbett felt the need to remind us that they don’t have gnats back home. I reminded them that they are the Georgia State Bird, so be careful how you swat them. Supper was leftovers and Jimmy’s Hot Dogs. There is no way we can go back home to AlbanyGeorgia and not have some Jimmy’s. They have been part of the family reunion meal for over sixty years at least for us out of towners. As was with Friday night it was late to bed but feeling good about the past two days.


Sunday breakfast was optional for all and some gathered in Albany and some at the lake. It was there I wanted to ask Kitty, (Carol’s best friend, who had spent the weekend with us), what she thought of our family. However, after thinking about it, I think she is as crazy as we are and therefore, fit right in with us. She supplied us with a lot of moments of laughter. She is now an Alderman by choice and family.


All good things must come to an end and another reunion has come and gone. We all headed back home while local family that put up with us, try to recover and get some much needed rest. Thank you all for that and such a great time. See you next year…


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