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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Renfro Reunion

Since 1977 when Traylor and I were 27, we have been attending an annual Renfro Family Reunion. The first of many Traylor planned was held at Fontana Lake in North Carolina. The focus was reuniting the Renfro parents, Eloise and Forney, with their five dispersed adult children and the grandchildren. At the time, three had young ones: Anne, Lynn and Julie. So this was a new idea for a reunion, to gather only immediate family and not all the extended family which is fun but less focused.

Here's the original bunch.
back row from left: Anne Renfro Fish, Henning Krome, Forney Renfro, Forney Traylor Renfro, Fred Fish, Chris Cain, Lynn Renfro Krome; center row from left: Eloise Renfro, Charlie Shirley, Julie Renfro Shirley, Ruth Renfro Cain, Diana Harris Renfro; front row of children: Elizabeth Fish, Cynthia Shirley, Thomas Fish, Keith Krome and Mark Krome 

Those five siblings knew how to have fun and Julie's husband Charlie Shirley brought a motorboat and provided moonlight cruises. Jimmy Buffet crooned out over the water, perfection at the time. The Renfros also know how to cook--a direct inheritance from Eloise--and food has always been a divided chore with lots of scratch cooking and some showing off.

This year, the reunion was held in Grassy Creek, NC home to both Traylor and Ruth, siblings four and five. Ruth was the efficient and thoughtful event planner and Traylor helped host one day's events at Reflection Pond.

Here's the pack now. Forney and Eloise are no longer with us and we also miss Elizabeth Fish, Henning Krome and Keith Krome who have passed on.
front: Traylor, Diana, Anne, Fred, Ruth, Chris, Lynn, David, Julie; four young boys in the center: Rett, Noah, Evan, John Clifton; next to back row: Mark, Kim, Clara, Celie; back row: Emily, Daniel, Thomas, Beth, Celeste, Greg, David and Cynthia. 

If life is about making memories, well life is still good. This year, Ruth as host bought most of the food locally so we had more time to play all over Ashe County. The meals were great, including Smokey Mountain Barbecue, Shatley Springs breakfast and later fried chicken, Sweet and Savory cakes and cookies and we even tried a new restaurant: Coyote Kitchen. Each cabin was responsible for preparing only one side item for the at-home meals such as potato salad or watermelon tomato salad. Celeste made "the best brownies ever," according to Emily.

Traylor made his favorite Brunswick Stew for the day at the pond where there were kayak races and a floating dock to navigate.
Thomas Fish on the new floating dock made just in time for the reunion.

James Young brought his family (Niki, Sam and Harper) in his buggy pulled by his new horse, Kale, and took any who wished to ride on a short trip up to True North for a long view.
Fred and Anne Fish admiring James Young's horse recently purchased from the Amish.

The stew was ready just in time for it to pour down some badly needed rain.

Huddling under the picnic shelter at dinner time.

Most of us visited  the Landmark Farm Alpacas.

Rett and Emily petting the 5 week old baby alpaca held by Rachelle Bridges
Mark Krome gets a kiss from Smudge.
Thomas Fish gets a close inspection.

Several family groups bicycled on the Creeper Trail just over the line in Virginia.

Celie Krome in front of the cyclists.

The five original siblings hopped on a small bus for the two hour Ashe County Barn Quilts Tour.

One quilt not on the tour of barns. Traylor's unique design painted by the Quilt Square Girls.

Other small groups broke off and made trips to Boone, to the Cheese factory in West Jefferson and to other local restaurants.

We missed those who are no longer with us and those who could not attend for scheduling reasons: Caroline Renfro, Sophie Krome and Caleb Mullins. Next year, our daughter Clara will be our event planner since the siblings have now "aged out." She has already begun to ponder places, activities, and how to handle menus.

And in the near future (2016) folks, there needs to be a whoop-de-do because that will be the FORTIETH ANNUAL RENFRO REUNION! Better get to thinking about that one too.

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