Bittersweet Reunion

My dear aunt Mary Anne passed away on February 1, 2006. Mary Anne helped me so much when I was setting up the McDonald family web site. She sent me tons of old pictures and typed up pages of family history. Mary Anne had such a great sense of humor. I was amazed at her interest in all new things and her mastery of the internet. She was one of my most faithful blog readers. My dad and brother Tommy saw her the weekend before she died and Lynda, Austin, Lenore, Paula and I attended her memorial service the following weekend. It was so sad but we still managed to have a nice time reconnecting with Mary Anne's daughter Dianne's family and meeting Mary Anne's friends. We also had fun romping around East and West Dundee where Paula and Lenore live and we spent a day with my second cousin once removed Susie and enjoyed meeting her fun husband Jeff.


  • Seeing Dianne, Brian, Kaitlin and Anna again and meeting cute little Emma Skye.
  • Meeting all of Mary Anne's friends
  • Meeting the family of Dale, Mary Anne's late husband
  • Minor celebrity elbow rubbings. Mary Anne's good friend Len is the brother of Cal who is the father of Michael Madsen (Kill Bill, Reservior Dogs) and Virginia Madsen (Sideways). We met Len and Cal, who are both very funny. Brian's friend John considered us celebrities because we went to school with his guitar hero Steve Morse.
  • Snow!
  • Friday night after dinner we passed a knitting store where some sort of after hours meeting/knitting circle was taking place. Austin had to meet the ladies and talk fabrics and quilts.
  • Having Hoops, the Wake-Up cat, visit me in my bedroom at Paula's
  • Good beer tastings at Emmett's and at Lenore's
  • Great breakfast at Benedict's in East Dundee with Susie and Jeff. Great potato pancakes!
  • Paula's mom's tour of her needlepoint. Amazing!
  • Shopping in Geneva - beads, housewares, chocolate.

Two little movies:

memorial flowers second cousins
Memorial Events
Quicktime, 2.6MB, 3 min
Romping Around East and West Dundee
Quicktime, 1.8MB, 1-1/2 min