Colleen and Valery made it all happen. Colleen hosted at her home in El Dorado Hills and prepared fabulous food including a yummy ham and a barbecued turkey (I think husband Andy fixed it, whoever did it, it was the yummiest turkey I've ever had). Valery organized, invited the folks, and made more yummy food, including the standard Blair clam dip.
Brother Rick and his bride, Kathy came down from Napa, abandoning their six goats and a goose for the day. They call their place Toad Ranch, but I wonder if it shouldn't be Goat Acres instead.
Antwan, the son of Maria who is the daughter of Mary Ann by her second husband. My brother was Mary Ann's first husband. Our family would be rather small if it weren't for our proclivity for sweeping in shirt-tail relations. I'm so grateful for that and so glad Antwan is a part of our family. And yes, Antwan is tall, and yes, he does play basketball (for Sierra College).
Three of my grandsons, Colleen's youngest three, Robby, Billy, and Danny.
The whole fan-damily (as my father would say). In the back row from the left: Brittany (Billy's girlfriend) Billy, Danny, Michael (son of Lynette, my brother Mickey's daughter) Antwan (son of Maria, the daughter of brother Mickey's ex-wife) Stephen (second son of Lynette). Front row from the left: Andy (Colleen's husband), Colleen, Stephanie (Michael's wife), Lynette holding her grandaughter Haley (Haley is the daughter of Stephen and Ashley in the red blouse. Behind Lynette is her sister Maria (Antwan's mom) next to Maria is Maria and Lynette's mom, Mary Ann (my brother was her first husband). I'm standing next to Ashley, Valery is in front of me holding Stephen and Ashley's son Jacob. Next to me is Joe Steiner, third husband of Mary Ann and a keeper). My sister-in-law Kathy Felch is next to my brother, Rick Blair. In front of them, the threesome holding hands are Kim, the wife of my nephew Jason (he is the son [adopted as a new-born] raised by Rick and his ex-wife). Jason is holding hands with his birth mother Dianne. Kneeling in the front, Robby Barton, Colleen's youngest son, holds his fat pug, Chomper. Next to Robby is a girl who's name I didn't catch. She is the daughter of Mike, a friend of Colleen's husband Andy. Mike took the photograph -- thanks Mike!
Jason and his birth mother Dianne. Jason was adopted at birth by my brother and his wife. Last year Jason began a search for his birth mother and scored when he found Dianne who was fifteen years old when Jason was born. She never had any other children. Finding each other was a fairy tale story beyond imagination. They can't look at each without shedding tears of joy and neither can anyone else. Can you see the resemblance? Particularly in the mouth and dimples. Brother Rick is so supportive of this reunion that it adds yet another dimension of joy.
My niece, Lynette, daughter of my brother (deceased) Mickey, and Mary Ann (now married to Joe Steiner) and her grandson Jacob (my great great nephew -- or is that great grand-nephew?). He was an amazing precocious, charming, and energetic little boy nearly four years old (October 11).