Making time for family reunions is important

Published 9:25 am Saturday, June 11, 2011

Column: Pat Mulso, Preserving the Past

Pat Mulso

Last week I made a trip to meet my sister, Linda, from Sioux Falls, Iowa, to pick up some very special hand made items that I had made (by some gals in Sioux Falls) for my family for our “Christmas in July Family Reunion.” This year’s reunion will be at our house the weekend of July 9 and 10.

When our step-dad died in 1990 we decided that we needed to plan on getting together each year, and we started meeting in Peoria, Ill., the half way spot between Dayton, Ohio, and Albert Lea. We had some really great weekends, and then as our children got older it was harder to find a time for all of us to meet. We still made graduations, weddings and funerals, but the reunions were further apart. When mom died we made a vow to get together each year, alternating between Ohio, Minnesota and South Dakota. This year it is my turn to host the event, and I thought it would be fun to have “Christmas in July” as the theme, as it has been 40 years since we have all been together for Christmas. I have asked each of my siblings to bring something that they received as a Christmas gift as a child and any photos that they might have from Christmas as we were growing up. My brother, younger sister and I all have things we are planning to bring, my two older sisters are having a harder time thinking of anything that they might still have, if they can’t find something, then they have to share a memory about something they got as a gift. So I am getting ready to put my Christmas tree up and wrap the special gifts that have been made for my siblings and other family members.

Email newsletter signup

My younger sister, Deb, has had her share of ups and downs in her life. She was only 12 when our dad died and doesn’t remember a lot about him, so hopefully this will bring back some pleasant memories of our childhood. She was in an auto accident on the way to her wedding, her youngest son was diagnosed with leukemia when he was 10 and continues to have serious health issues, her husband has recently retired because of his bout with cancer and then a month ago she was hospitalized with heart problems. She will be having a heart procedure done later this month, but told the doctors that she was not going to miss this reunion. She and Gary will be celebrating their 35th wedding anniversary this September.

We never know what tomorrow will hold, so we need to live each day to the fullest and remember to share those memories that are important to you with your loved ones.

We have just celebrated Eddie Cochran Weekend and now we are preparing for the Red Power Round Up event. The museum will offer reduced admission to all patrons attending the show. During the show individuals can enter through the gate by the church and admission will be only $3.

Members of the FCHM Board will be serving sandwiches, beans, chips and a beverage at the Farmer’s Market from 4 to 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 22. Hope to see you there. Proceeds will go for ongoing programming at the Freeborn County Historical Museum.

The museum will host another four-hour defensive driving class from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 12. The cost is $19, and you must pre-register.

For details, call the museum at 373-8003 between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. Have a great week and remember, what happens today is history tomorrow.

Pat Mulso is the executive director of the Freeborn County Historical Museum in Albert Lea.