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Catherine Mann | Family Reunions & Writer Retreats!


So, imagine the biggest family reunion ever, where the amazing people in your life gather at a hotel.  Nobody has to clean up.  All the meals are at amazing restaurants at some mega-cool tourist site.  Best of all, you get to catch up with so many people at once.

Sound awesome?  You bet!  And that's what the Romance Writers of America (RWA) annual convention feels like to me - the coolest kind of family reunion.

I joined RWA when I lived in Shreveport, Louisiana back in... (cough, cough, long time ago, don't want to age myself too much, LOL!)  Since then, I've attended annual RWA conferences held in DC, NYC, Denver, Reno and Dallas.  And it's always the highlight of the year for me, catching up with my "family" of romance writers and readers.

This year's conference was held in NYC and I hope you'll enjoy my "family reunion" photos.  I started off the first morning having coffee with reader friends I met years ago through the incomparable Suzanne Brockmann.

coffee friends

The time in between was amazing too - four booksignings - where I got to catch up with readers.  Remembering face to face time with readers is a real treat that has kept me motivated through many deadlines.

I presented a workshop with my critique partner, Joanne Rock (pictured below), and treasured author buddies Winnie Griggs, Tanya Michaels and Renee Ryan.  We've all known each other since pre-publication.  How fun, fun, fun to sit on a panel together!

The conference always ends with the RITA and Golden Heart Awards ceremony.  This year I had the great honor of presenting a RITA.  (Such a kick to open that envelope and say, "The RITA goes to....")  And after the awards ceremony, Joanne Rock and I hung out with a group of new readers (including awesome Paula from Facebook pictured below) to toast the truly stellar week!


Do you schedule family reunions?  What are some of your favorite potluck dishes from neighborhood, office or family gatherings?  Two lucky commenters will receive a copy of my July release - COVER ME.


Here's what others had to say about COVER ME:

"An exciting storyteller, Catherine Mann weaves deep emotion with intense suspense for an all-night read." -#1 New York Times bestseller Sherrilyn Kenyon

"Adventure and suspense are the hallmarks of Mann's award-winning military romances, and this first book in the Elite Force series won't disappoint her many fans." -Booklist Reviews

"Mann delivers plenty of thrills and charged erotic situations with this first in a new series featuring pararescue men, elite U.S. Air Force heroes ready for tense ‘land, sea, or mountain, military missions or civilian rescue' around the globe... bracing thriller with a strong-willed heroine and sensitive, hard-bodied hero." -Publishers Weekly

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105 comments posted.

Re: Catherine Mann | Family Reunions & Writer Retreats!

Whenever we have a special occasion, there is a lovely elderly woman that is a customer at the bank my mother manages-she makes the most amazing homemade carrot cake you have ever tasted. The most special part of it is she literally gets teary when asked to make one of her cakes, and when we(the family) call and/or write our thanks she gets as giddy as a child,and tears up again. Its become a special tradition.
(Kim Adsit 7:23am July 7, 2011)

Whenever we have a special occasion, there is a lovely elderly woman that is a customer at the bank my mother manages-she makes the most amazing homemade carrot cake you have ever tasted. The most special part of it is she literally gets teary when asked to make one of her cakes, and when we(the family) call and/or write our thanks she gets as giddy as a child,and tears up again. Its become a special tradition!
(Kim Adsit 7:25am July 7, 2011)

When we have family get togethers everyone looks forward to my mom's potato salad. We have all tried to make it but for some reason hers is the bestest. People have even asked her to make it for thier parties and she wasn't even going. :)
(Patti Paonessa 8:54am July 7, 2011)

Whenever we all get together I am always asked to make my potato salad and/or my potato casserole. Everyone has their own special dish. It is so much fun getting everyone together!!
(Dawn Staniszeski 8:58am July 7, 2011)

My two best friends and our families will be meeting in Myrtle Beach this year for a reunion. 10 kids and 6 adults! It's so much fun. BTW I loved the pictures you posted, it looks like you had a great time.
(Renee Pajda 9:11am July 7, 2011)

Hello Fresh Fiction mavens...it's been a while.

Hi Cathy, I'm just dropping in to say hi. Lovely blog post
about family reunions. I just wanted to show some love, so
no need to enter me in the contest. It is quite interesting
how you are able to have so many different blog topics each
day of your blog tour. I picture you at your desk trying to
figure what to talk about where. I'm not sure how you do it,
but I'm lovin' it. Can't wait to see what else you talk
about in the upcoming days. Lovely pics in this one too. Was
bummed when I heard I missed the breakfast.

I haven't been to a family reunion. As far as I know, we've
never had one, so I can't really say much about that.
However, my favorite potluck dish is anything with chicken.
Yep...I'm that easy...LOL!! I hope you have a lovely day
with the ladies here.

Peace and love,
Paula R.
(Paula Robinson 10:04am July 7, 2011)

My two favorite potluck dishes would be my Mom's spaghetti salad (cold pasta with Italian veggies) and my grandmother's Watergate cake. It is a cake made with pistachios and pistachio pudding mix in the batter and the frosting. It is perfect for summer because it is served cold. Don't ask me why it's called Watergate cake or why the icing is called Cover Up frosting. I understand the references but why a cake would be called that is a mystery. LOL
(Stacie Deramo 10:05am July 7, 2011)

Get togethers are so important - life is short and you never know how long you have so live it to the full.
(Barbara Hanson 10:45am July 7, 2011)

Good morning, everyone! How exciting to log on and see so many comments alreayd posted - y'all ROCK!! I'm so looking forward to my day visiting here. :) Thank you, Fresh Fiction, for including me in your blog schedule!
(Catherine Mann 10:54am July 7, 2011)

Kim, just reading your note about the carrot cake made my mouth water! Carrot cake is one of my all time favs. :)
(Catherine Mann 10:54am July 7, 2011)

Patti, LOL about your mom being asked to make potato salad for parties even when she's not attending! There truly are some recipes that I believe can only be made by one particular person - something about the love that goes in, I guess. My grandmama made THE best divinity ever. So light and airy with a crunchy outside. I've never been able to make it like she does and I've never found anyone else who could. But I sure think of her every time I walk by some in a fudge shop. :)
(Catherine Mann 10:56am July 7, 2011)

Dawn, now a potato casserole would be a huge hit in my house - especially with my oldest daughter! My potato and sausage casserole is one of her fav comfort foods to this day.
(Catherine Mann 10:57am July 7, 2011)

Renee, what a great place Myrtle Beach is for reunions! I actually grew up about 40 minutes away from MB... lots of happy family memories from there. Hope your friends hav ea blast at their reunion!
(Catherine Mann 10:59am July 7, 2011)

Hi Paula! Great to see you here! Hope you don't mind that I included your photo. :) Had a blast visiting with you after the RITA ceremony!
(Catherine Mann 11:00am July 7, 2011)

Stacie, OMG the Watergate cake sounds amazing! I adore anything with pistachios and you actually don't find that many things with pistachios included. I'm betting it tastes liek a cakey ice cream. I'll definitely have to do a google search for that!
(Catherine Mann 11:02am July 7, 2011)

Barbara, you're so wise! It is so important to treasure the moments we have with loved ones. That hit especially close to home for me with my kids growing up so fast and beginning to leave the nest.
(Catherine Mann 11:03am July 7, 2011)

YES, Family Reunions and gathering are great for everyone. My Brother has his Birthday on the 4th of July and that is fun to go back to Kansas when we can. We love Chicken Divan Casserole and my Burgundy Berry pie is great too. My pies even won the Food Contest at the Texas Secretary of State office one year. Please enter me in your great contest to win COVER ME and it sounds great too. Thank YOU, CECILIA
(Cecilia Dunbar Hernandez 11:10am July 7, 2011)

After the death of my mother my siblings decided we should get together once a month for dinner (we probably should have been doing it all along but isn't that how life goes sometimes). Dinners started out potluck but have evolved to having a theme. The make your own waffles was a big hit as was the panini sandwich maker (my sister in law has the best kitchen gadgets)!
(Holly Caulfield 11:46am July 7, 2011)

Hi Cecila! My uncle's birthday was July 4 too - he had the best parties! Congrats on your pies winning such a major contest - they must be fabulous! (Your family is LUCKY! :)
(Catherine Mann 11:58am July 7, 2011)

Oooops... left a letter out of your name, Cecilia - sorry about that!
(Catherine Mann 11:58am July 7, 2011)

Holly what a lovely idea and a great tribute to your mom and the bonds she helped you siblings forge. I love the idea of themes.... you've got me craving waffles! ;-)
(Catherine Mann 11:59am July 7, 2011)

You have to have family to have a reunion so that leaves me
out of the equation. I like pasta salad at pot-luck like
events! It's safer than potato salad!
(Michele Powell 11:59am July 7, 2011)

I had to chuckle when I saw your posting today, because this weekend I'll be going to my first family reunion. This one is finally close enough for me to attend, so I'm really excited about going!! There is one Cousin I'll be reunited with, that I haven't seen in about 30 years!! At one time we were inseperable, and lost touch through the years, so I'm looking forward to seeing her, along with a few other people. Because I'm a caretaker where I live, I'll only be able to stay for a couple of hours, so as far as taking a potluck dish along, I doubt if that is going to happen. It sounds like my Cousins who put this together every year have it covered. Besides - I'd have to make enough to feed 100+ people. There were originally 13 children in the family. When you add their children into the mix, as well as their children, you get the picture. I enjoyed hearing about your experience, and I'm sure I'll enjoy mine just as much.
(Peggy Roberson 12:07pm July 7, 2011)

Family reunions are now a thing of the past for our family. The sisters try to get together once a year. Potatoe salad is my requested dish. Enjoyed the bolg.
(Sheila True 12:16pm July 7, 2011)

My family is spread out all over the US. Since the economy
is the way it is today I can't get everyone together at
once. So I enjoy time with each of them at a time. Thanks
for the giveaway!

jcross719 at yahoo dot com
(J c 12:19pm July 7, 2011)

I don't mind at all, Cathy!!! Love all the pictures you
posted. Hanging out with you and Joanne was a highlight of
the conference for me. I think about it all the time. Looks
like quite the party here.

Peace and love,
Paula R.
(Paula Robinson 12:25pm July 7, 2011)

My husband's family takes turns organizing their reunion. We all ways play games and every year it is different. One year we had casino games, then we played bunco. We have done minute to win it games. Who knows what we will being this year. Can't wait to read the new book.
(Ellen Blakley 12:28pm July 7, 2011)

Thanks for sharing those photos-loved them! I attend scrapbook conventions and they are also like a reunion as the other attendees become like an extended family. We always have so much fun.

My favorite dish to pass is hot Swedish meatballs in a crockpot. 1 cup of sour cream, 1 can of mushroom soup, 1 cup water and 1 package frozen meatballs-throw them all in the crockpot and stir. Heat on high for 2-3 hours or low for 6-8 hours. Quick, simple and yummy! I always go home with an empty crockpot.

Am looking forward to your book.
(Jody Hollenbeck 12:31pm July 7, 2011)

My favorite pot luck dish in a pasta salad with shrimp, apples and cranberries. I am always asked to bring this dish and there are never any leftovers!
(Joyce Bruner 12:54pm July 7, 2011)

We always have our family reunion on Memorial Day weekend. My favorites are potato salad, maccaroni salad, and green bean casserole. Yummy!

Your book sounds awesome. I will have to read it.
(Cathy Phillips 12:58pm July 7, 2011)

My family is too large for me to ever condemn myself to the task of organizing them for a get together, 10 children in my family alone!!
As for what I like to bring to potlucks I usually like fresh fruit salads & a potato dish like Scalloped Potatoes from scratch or rosemary roasted potatoes using Yukon golds.
(Marcelle Cole 1:07pm July 7, 2011)

Treasure the moments while you can. We had reunions all the time until Mom and my two brothers passed away. Now it is just my sister and family and my family that do the get together thing. And we make up for everyone else not being there. I always make my infamous Watermelon Splits for everyone. Slice a peeled banana in half and put on a plate. Use an ice cream scoop to put 3 watermelon balls on the banana, cover generously with whipped cream and sprinkle with blue berries. This is my red, white, and blue special.
(Angela Bartlett 1:20pm July 7, 2011)

We don't have yearly reunions, but when we do have them the host family member will provide a main course like fried chicken and everyone else will bring a dish to pass. Since it's usually a few hours from my home I opt to bring a black bean and corn salad that travels well and is very tasty. It's very casual and some people come early and camp out in the yard of the host family member.
(Marcy Shuler 1:29pm July 7, 2011)

Both my husband and I come from families that love to get together. When we go home the family gets together to see each other and all the food is just great. Get to have things that I miss from childhood that I don't get to have. This sounds like a wonderful read.
(Diane Castiglione 1:50pm July 7, 2011)

my family has the renunion but i do not go to them because i do not live near them and then i talk to them on face book
(Desiree Reilly 2:19pm July 7, 2011)

Michele, great point about the pasta salad! My boys re runners and they live off pasta, pasta, pasta!! :)
(Catherine Mann 2:34pm July 7, 2011)

Peggy, how wonderful that you're going to get to see your cousin for the first time in so many years!!!! Sounds like it's going to be an awesome family reunion!
(Catherine Mann 2:36pm July 7, 2011)

Hi Sheila! I'm touched by the thought of you and your sistes getting together once a year - I have two sisters and we live so far apart. It's a real treat when we get to be together!!
(Catherine Mann 2:37pm July 7, 2011)

Jessica, I totally hear you on the family being spead out. The military took us all around the country - you're right that it really does make a person treasure the times they are together!!
(Catherine Mann 2:38pm July 7, 2011)

Ellen, what a smart idea to have family members take turns organizing things!! Love it!
(Catherine Mann 2:39pm July 7, 2011)

Jody, thank you for the recipe!! Sounds yummy! I'll have to try it out at my next neighborhood picnic - we're all like extended family to each other - sorta like your scrapbooking group, I guess!
(Catherine Mann 2:41pm July 7, 2011)

Joyce - am really intrigued by the combo in your pasta salad - sounds deeee-lish!!
(Catherine Mann 2:42pm July 7, 2011)

Cathy P - Ah yes, what kind of reunion would it be without green bean casserole!! A universal staple and favorite!!
(Catherine Mann 2:43pm July 7, 2011)

Marcelle, rosemary is my favorite fresh herb to season with - we actually grow it in our garden. :)
(Catherine Mann 2:44pm July 7, 2011)

Angela, what a fun and unique idea - watermelon splits - sounds like something my family would really go for!
(Catherine Mann 2:45pm July 7, 2011)

Marcelyn, we actually had fried chicken at our 4th of July neighborhood picnic (with passed side dishes.) Nobody had to grill - it was great! Thanks for stopping by to post! Great to see you here!
(Catherine Mann 2:47pm July 7, 2011)

Hi Desiree! I too looooove how facebook helps me keep in touch with family members far away! I'm on FB and Twitter all the time (probably too much, lol!)
(Catherine Mann 2:48pm July 7, 2011)

Congrats on the new release, Catherine. We don't really schedule family reunions since most of the extended family lives far away. We do get together often with our cousins who live nearby.
(Jane Cheung 2:49pm July 7, 2011)

No family reunions... my parents, sisters and I see each other all of the time... as for extended family, only know a few...
(Colleen Conklin 3:13pm July 7, 2011)

Sounds like a good book.
(Wilma Frana 3:17pm July 7, 2011)

My family isn't big enough for a family reunion but the upside is we see each other all the time. I do so love gatherings though, among old friends and new friends. These are always fun, we have girls night out and in and reminisce. Look the barbecues and cook-offs.
(Na S 3:23pm July 7, 2011)

I can remember the annual family picnic at my grandomther's house when I was a little girl. Picnic tables were placed end to end in her back yard. The whole extended family got together. Since I was an only child, it was great to see this many family members in one place. And the food...all homemade.YUM!!
(Robin McKay 4:15pm July 7, 2011)

Getting together with family is so very important. My husband and I spend a
couple of months in the mountains of North Carolina where we can hike and
spend time with our son's family. Lots of grandchildren and I get to cook all
of everyone's favorite dishes. I love to cook so when we all get together, I get
to indulge my passion and spend loving time with my family. That's what life
is all about.

Connie Fischer
[email protected]
(Connie Fischer 4:30pm July 7, 2011)

Haven't attended any family gatherings since I was a teen; I'm an only child with few and very scattered cousins.

However, in summer 2012, I will reunite with a branch of my mother's family in Kaslo, B.C., on Kootenay Lake. This small resort city was founded by my maternal great-grandfather David Prosser Kane and an older brother. As a rootless Air Force brat, this is the closest place to roots I have and where my mother's mother was born. My great-grandparents' first home still stands there.

As for reunion food, I would go with that American classic--potato salad!
(Carla Schuller 4:30pm July 7, 2011)

When we get together, people ask that I bring my Enchilada Casserole. There are never any leftovers and someone is always asking for the recipe. We had potlucks out our church for years and one of my fondest memories was the deserts that a little elderly lady used to bring. We would all fight over her chocolate and pineapple mirange pies. They were to die for and she was so modest about her ability to bake. She was a doll and we all loved her.
(Maude Allen 4:36pm July 7, 2011)

I recently got a new kitchen which more than doubled it in size so I've been having most of the family/friends gatherings lately. Really miss having my Mom here, she was such a good family style cook & baker. But I've had more practise lately & most things have turned out really well.

RWA looks like it was so much fun - would love to get to the readers portion someday!
(Diane Sallans 5:14pm July 7, 2011)

Family reunions are fun. I'm looking forward to the one I'm attending this week-end. Many of the family members are scattered out across the USA and this is our special time to be together.
(Anna Speed 5:30pm July 7, 2011)

Family get together's are golden and it's the time I'd rather see and be with my family and not just to see them at funnerals and weddings..........ewwwwww......
(Joanne Bozik 5:37pm July 7, 2011)

Hi Jane! Thanks so much for the congrats on my new release. :)
(Catherine Mann 5:43pm July 7, 2011)

Colleen - How wonderful that you get to see your family often! Cool!
(Catherine Mann 5:44pm July 7, 2011)

Wilma, thanks! Hope you enjoy COVER ME. :)
(Catherine Mann 5:45pm July 7, 2011)

Na - I am completely on board with the importance of "girls night out!"
(Catherine Mann 5:46pm July 7, 2011)

Robin - I adore the image of those picnic tables lined p end to end to accomoate a large family. What an incredible memory and legacy!
(Catherine Mann 5:47pm July 7, 2011)

Hi Connie - My oldest loves hiking in NC - such great trails up there!!
(Catherine Mann 5:48pm July 7, 2011)

Carla, how fun that your family will be gathering on a spot your great grandfather founded! I'll bet he's smiling down on all of you, very happy!
(Catherine Mann 5:49pm July 7, 2011)

Maude, you had me at enchilada! I adore, adore, adore Mexican food!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
(Catherine Mann 5:50pm July 7, 2011)

Hi Diane - I'm with you on realy liking a large kitchen. The home we have no has my first large kitchen and it's such a joy ot gather and cook there. :)
(Catherine Mann 5:51pm July 7, 2011)

Anna, hope you have a blast at your familiy reunion this weekend!!
(Catherine Mann 5:52pm July 7, 2011)

Joanne, I agree it's great ot be able to get together for the sake of just visiting without the extra baggage that comes along with a huge event. =8-O
(Catherine Mann 5:53pm July 7, 2011)

Hi there! I think I've gotten a chance to read over everyone's notes - if I missed one, please do call my attention to it. I really enjoy stepping out of my writing cave and visiting with folks!! For now.... I'm headed back into the cave to hammer out a few more pages on Book 3 in the "Elite Force" series. Will check back in later tonight.... Thanks again for making this a GREAT day!
(Catherine Mann 5:54pm July 7, 2011)

I love family reunions...We have an annual reunion with
aunts, uncles, cousins, and families. My immediate family of
my mother, 5 siblings & their families, my family have get-
togethers as often as we can, in addition to holidays.
Depending on the holiday, we each have a "given" dish we
prepare. For unplanned occasions, I like to fix a taco
salad. Easy to prepare and everyone seems to enjoy it!
Please enter me in the drawing for this great-sounding book!
(Leanna Morris 6:17pm July 7, 2011)

There are so many of us that we try not to converge all at once, but when we do it's absolutely brilliant. NO one sleeps - where for a start? Lots of laughing, talking & eating. BBQ is the go.
(Mary Preston 6:19pm July 7, 2011)

the last reunion we had was about 4 years ago, since then
there has been alot of anger and pettiness with in fighting,
that it dosen't look like we will have another one for a
long time. Its a sad thing because family is the most
important thing, but stubburness is going to keep everyone
not talking. I enjoyed reading your blog, put a smile on my
(Christine Milone 6:19pm July 7, 2011)

Hi Cathy!! What a great post. My family is pretty big and we look for any reason to get together -- in small or large groups, whether it's family dinner on Sundays or my cousin's annual pool party, which is a total blast. Mayhem ensues. Our motto is "the family that plays together stays together!" It was my absolute pleasure getting a chance to spend time with you at RWA -- really, it's an honor. Thanks for including our breakfast photo! I've been reading your books from waaayyy back and I adore them (as you know!) -- my new copy of Cover Me is already in hand (and read!) so no need to pick me. Loved it. I can't wait for the next book of the Elite Force series, which is just going to slay me, by the way. :) Hugs!
(Stephanie h. 6:27pm July 7, 2011)

No, no big family reunions. Just the usual holiday gatherings; which are getting smaller every year. But, now with three, four next year, grand children near us, and three grands a few states away, holidays will sure to be a hoot of a time in years to come.

A dish that is always asked for from me, especially at Christmas time is stuffed cabbage. I won't give up trying to pass my Hungarian heritage to my daughters.

I am so looking forward to your new release!
(Cynthia Netherton 6:52pm July 7, 2011)

Hi Cathy--loved your post and the pictures! Every holiday my dd and sil host both families at their home which is great for entertaining. I am usually asked to bring dessert which is usually either chocolate cake or what we call Twinkie cake which is yellow cake with buttercream icing. My deviled eggs are also appreciated by all. Haven't had an extended family reunion in many years. Looking forward to reading Cover Me!
(Mary Perry 6:57pm July 7, 2011)

Actually the cake is called Krimpet cake not Twinkie! :-/
(Mary Perry 7:00pm July 7, 2011)

We've had only one family reunion ever--for my mother's side. They came from Europe, Australia, US and Canada for her 80th birthday. Her only living brother and sister could not make it. Now only her sister, who will be 90 this year, remains. All of us really enjoyed the event at my sister's summer lodge. Since my brother passed away five months ago, we will never again have even a reunion of us siblings. However, maybe we can still have a reunion of us 20 cousins. That would be nice. Unfortunately, my father had no close living relatives after his mother passed away in the late 70s. He himself died in 1983.
I did have one meeting with some of your author family at the 1999 RT conference. I wish I could get to another one.
(Sigrun Schulz 7:47pm July 7, 2011)

(Silvana Moscato 8:03pm July 7, 2011)

We do schedule family reunions though not as frequently as in years past. Favorite dishes include Ronnie's surprise kisses. Wonderful little cookie balls.
(Lisa Kendall 8:25pm July 7, 2011)

I love family reunions, but there haven't been as many lately because everybody's getting older and stretched out across the states. It's a lot of work to plan and run and rent the tent, but so much fun to be in the thick of it all. My favorite was one where we had a mock wedding with a script and whole-hearted participants which was good for a lot of laughs.
(Alyson Widen 8:30pm July 7, 2011)

We don't really have big family unions after my grandparents die. We do
get together for xmas and other holidays.... Favorite food? No special
dishes.... More junk food and desserts really...
(May Pau 8:41pm July 7, 2011)

We don't call our get together reunions. We just use any excuse to get together. Now that we are spread around the country, it's a little harder but we still manage a couple of times a year.
(Jennifer Beyer 9:39pm July 7, 2011)

My mom makes an awesome hot bean casserole, it's the main reason I go to those functions!! (kidding)
(Mary Lynn Hayes 9:46pm July 7, 2011)

We've had a couple small family get togethers but this year for the first time we're having a big one. My uncle is 90 and close to 91, my mom will be 89 and my aunt is 87 so we're going all out. It's picnic style and everyone is going to bring something. I haven't decided yet lol.
(Jeanne Sheats 9:48pm July 7, 2011)

Leaaaaannnna! You said taco salad!!!!! Did you see my post earlier? I ADORE Mexican food. I'm totally craving a taco salad now!
(Catherine Mann 10:02pm July 7, 2011)

Mary, BBQ is a winner for any occassion, imho! :)
(Catherine Mann 10:03pm July 7, 2011)

Hi Christine, it certainly is frustrating when a few mess up the joy for the many. I'm glad to know though that my blog made you smile!
(Catherine Mann 10:04pm July 7, 2011)

Stephanie, absolutely my joy to get to visit with you at RWA over lunch - thank you SO much for organizing the get together!!!! XXXOOO!
(Catherine Mann 10:06pm July 7, 2011)

Cynthia, I love hearing how you're keeping your family heritage going for the next generations.... very cool!
(Catherine Mann 10:07pm July 7, 2011)

Mary, I have to confess I'm a fanatic about deviled eggs - love them - even have four different kind of deviled egg plates to serve them on. :)
(Catherine Mann 10:08pm July 7, 2011)

Sigrun - what an amazing family reunion that must have been! Wow!!!

And I sure do hope you get to make it to RT again in the future.... :)
(Catherine Mann 10:09pm July 7, 2011)

Silvana - Good luck!! Thanks for posting!
(Catherine Mann 10:10pm July 7, 2011)

Lisa - the kiss cookies sound yummy - served with milk, of course!
(Catherine Mann 10:11pm July 7, 2011)

Alyson, the mock wedding idea sounds like a hoot! What a fun idea - I'll bet everybody enjoyed it. :)
(Catherine Mann 10:12pm July 7, 2011)

Mary, I'm a big fan of parties that consist of nothing but appetizers and desserts. :)
(Catherine Mann 10:15pm July 7, 2011)

Jennifer, that's great that so many of you are able to gathe at least twice a year!! Bet your photo albums are jam packed!
(Catherine Mann 10:16pm July 7, 2011)

Mary Lynn - Do you have your mom's recipe? My mom won't share some of hers. :)
(Catherine Mann 10:17pm July 7, 2011)

Jeanne, sounds like it's going to be a fabulous reunion. How special to have so many generations gathered together at once!!
(Catherine Mann 10:18pm July 7, 2011)

Well, folks, that's about it for me for today! Need to turn in for the night. Since we're at 100 comments, that's probably a good place for me to stop! LOL! Of course comments that come afterward will still be entered in the drawing until the contest closes.

Thanks so much for a great, great day, everybody! And thank you, Fresh Fiction, for letting me hang out here!
(Catherine Mann 10:20pm July 7, 2011)

My family is very small, I have a son and daughter, my mother lives with us and my aunt and a cousin live not too far away. We see each other often enough that when we do see one another nobody is ever behaves so I try to limit the family gatherings. As for fav dishes, I either make a easy peasy fruit salad or guacamole and chips.
Looking forward to reading "Cover Me".
Good luck and happy writing!
(Tracie Travis 10:20pm July 7, 2011)

Altho we get together at the holidays, this summer 4 of my 5 children, their families and me----are going to the outer banks, renting a house for a week. we will have kids from almost 1 yr to almost 14 yr. It has always been a dream of mine. I will let you know if I still have it after 7 days in one house!!!!
(Barbara Studer 10:34pm July 7, 2011)

Yes we have family reunions and my favorite dish is cheese pudding.
(Kara Lepard 11:04pm July 7, 2011)

It's unfortunate but our family (sadly who's left) does not have family reunions but an absolutely astonishing dish to bring EVERYWHERE is a chili dip. Bottom layer is softened cream cheese, middle layer is a can of chili (with or without beans) and the top layer is a package of cheddar cheese. Microwave 6 minutes and serve with taco chips and I guarantee, this dish will be the hit of the party!!!!
(Susan Coster 6:33pm July 8, 2011)

Hi there, Tracie, Barbara, Kara and Susan! Thank you so much for stopping by to comment! I had such fun hanging out here with everyoe at Fresh Fiction!! Happy reading.... :)
(Catherine Mann 9:53am July 9, 2011)

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