Friday, October 5, 2012

1st Annual "We Are Family" BBQ

We have been soo busy lately its been hard to catch up with things including my blog, and I'd love to share all those things, but not all is totally news worthy or honestly even that interesting. But I would like to share a special Saturday we had a few weeks ago.  As most of you know, I grew up with a set of close family friends that were just that to me as I grew up...Family.  This past holiday season I wrote about how this "family" of mine gets together during the holidays to do Novenas as a way to make sure that our children grow up with as much of our culture as we did. 

Well, this year in an effort to make sure that we get together more often, one of our friends, Sandra, has been trying for years to start a yearly family reunion/BBQ and it just hasn't happened...until a few weeks ago. And it started off with an email from Sandra like this...

:P tongue Hey Everyone,

Well this has been a long time coming.... I've been trying to plan a good' ole Colombian afternoon BBq for awhile...

As some of you may recall, when we were kids we use to go to the Coronado's with Kentucky Fried Chicken, Mcdonalds or homemade food for an afternoon of swimming, eating and fun....

Well, all of us kids have grown up with families of our own...and I am trying to recreate that and for years to come.. Novenas cannot possibly be the only time we all get together in a single year..... We need to reconnect and introduce the new cultures and the people that are part of our lives...
Let this be the start to a new Tradition....

And that's what it will be....

Why is this such a big deal? Its just a BBQ. Well yes, but you have to understand that for us, we grew up having summers being together filled with weekly swimming, cookouts, dance parties galore, and the local hang out was always my house ("the Coronado's" as mentioned above) as we were the only ones with the pool. Our house was an open door for our friends and we were always together. Everyone would pitch in by bringing fruit, food to cook, or like back then, yes, KFC and McDonald's were cheap enough for us to feed a house full. Oh the good ol' times! ;)
Anyway, that's how it was and if you ask any of us, those will forever be some of our best childhood memories! We all learned how to swim at my pool. There's not one of us that didn't get thrown in and were expected to swim out on our own by one or any of our dads. There are soo many memories I could mention...It honestly makes me happy just to reminisce.

 And that is the same feeling and the memories we want for our kids. We want them to grow up together and be able to look back and be able to say that they felt like family too. Each of our family's dynamics have changed and logistically have made it harder for all of our families to spend as much time together as we did, but we're doing the best we can to give them the opportunities to build as many of their own memories.

 So we got together on 9/22 for our first annual family BBQ and we had a great time. The kids went swimming like we used to, and the older kids played baseball together, we (the new parents) set up, cooked and hung out like our parents used to, and in turn- our moms, "Las Viejas," (warmly translated as "the old ladies") got to sit around and get waited on.  And for old times sake and just for plain old ha-has, my mom and my aunt showed up with KFC. It was too funny, but guess what? We had no problem chowing down on it like old times either! lol!


Most of us took our old (OLD!) magnetic type photo albums that had pictures of when we were little to  share with everybody.  We actually spent hours looking through these pictures... commenting, laughing, and pointing out old haircuts, fashions (that are actually in style again now), and people that we used to know.

We laughed and excitedly talked about the old days, and retold stories for our spouses to hear. We awed over how much our kids resembled us when we were younger. In so many pictures I realized how much Mikey looks like me, just without the pony tails. :)

It was just fun! It was heartwarming! And it bonded us and our friendships all over again! It really reminded us and our kids just how close we've been all these years, and how important it is to keep our families close for years to come. 

So we made sure that we'd have proof for our kids and their future kids, so we took the following pictures to commemorate the 1st annual BBQ:

 Families represented: 
Cañas-Chavez, Cardenas-Arango, Coronado-Camacho, 
Coronado, Correa, Garcia-Halaby, and Jaramillo
 We took just a kids picture and wanted to include all future
children, so that black shirt/spot you see in the middle is
my brother, Sergio and Casandra's baby bump to represent their baby girl.
It was too cute!

We had so much fun taking these pictures (over and over again!), and we truly hope to continue to have this BBQ on an annual basis at a different family's house each year. We also want to try to make a scrapbook that we can all contribute and add pictures to, and maybe make it a traveling book of sorts. I believe this will truly become a priority for our families for so many reasons- one being that we realized how quickly time will go by before our kids are all grown up and go their separate ways that we need to keep them together as long as possible.

Thank you to Sandra and Eddie for having all of us over and taking the time to start this new tradition.

Thank you Eddie for that amazing BBQ chicken you made...a much healthier traditional substitute for KFC to continue...LOL!

and finally...
Thank you to all our family friends that were there and to those that couldn't make it that day. To say I cherish our friendship and all our memories is not enough, but I'm so excited to help keep them going for us and our kids. 

May we all hold our friendships close to our hearts...old and new!!

From my corner to yours...Have a wonderful weekend everybody and thank you for stopping by!


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