Wednesday, August 7, 2013


Last weekend's Powell/Church reunion in Jefferson, Ashe County, North Carolina, was a great gathering of cousins.  These two first cousins, my daughter Sarah and my niece Grace, see a lot of each other here in East Tennessee.  In this picture they are building a pillow fort in Mom's room at the lodge where we stayed.

Here my sister Laura and I are pictured with the Albamonte men, our first cousins from in and around Washington, DC.  Because we grew up here in East Tennessee, and they and their sister, Elena, grew up in Washington, we have always thought of the Albamonte kids as the city mice and ourselves as the country mice.  They and their mom, my Aunt Joan, always show us a great time when we visit our nation's capital.  From left to right are me, George, Laura, David and Andrew.  David, Andrew and I played an interesting card game called Pirate Fluxx in which the play of a particular card causes you to get extra points for talking like a pirate.  Arrrrrggh!  David and I found a little time to play guitar, and George entertained the kids with magic tricks.

After our canoe trip on the New River with Cara and John, we met up with most of the Albamonte clan for a meal in town.  I'll blog about the restaurant later. It was a festive meal!

I acquired Skippy, my black rubber rat when I was in my twenties, and he is perhaps my favorite toy.  His adventures are legion, and he goes on most road trips with us.  To our mutual surprise, my new found second cousin Cara also has a black rubber rat, and hers is named Scarlett!  My sisters were amazed.

My sisters and I are the Country Mice, and the Albamonte and Somavilla cousins are the City Mice.  I told Cara about it, and she dubbed herself and our Florida cousins the Beach Mice.  I guess the rats are honorary mice.