Ideas For Organizing Family Reunions

The computer has actually made our lives a whole lot more convenient, I mean before the internet it wasn't possible to book cinema tickets without actually turning up! And anyway what else would you blame when something goes wrong? Your computer has no feelings!

The computer was pretty boring until somebody invented the internet, the internet used to be occupied primarily by geeks, hey I'm allowed I was one of them! But now everybody who is anybody is using the internet to do something or another.

Researching your family tree used to be very difficult, you used to have to visit all of the churches and government offices to look at some paperwork. However now it's really easy thanks to the internet. Many people all around the world are hooked on hunting for their ancestors.

If you're reading this then I'll bet you're looking for your happy ever after ending too! You probably dream of finding a long lost family member, or just talking to someone that you haven't spoken to in years.

If you're planning a family reunion then it can seem like a frightening task and you may look at hiring a family reunion planner to help you decide everything. Of course whether or not you hire a reunion planner is completely up to you.

The tips below can help you to plan your family reunion.

You should by now have a rough idea how many people are coming to the event. We all know that the more people that attend an event, the more difficult it is to organize. This is why you should form a committee, this committee should have about 1 person per 25 guests. You can be in control and delegate out the tasks. The great bit is you can give other people the tasks that you hate doing!

You have to tell people that you're planning to have a family reunion. No matter how close a family is they are not capable of communicating with telepathy. Even building a website is not enough, how many people would search for family reunions to go to on the internet? You have to tell people!

You should tell people that you are planning a reunion well before the actual event, you don't have to give them all of the details, just a date will do for now. They can then keep this date free, plus you can get an idea of how many people will go. Some people suggest that you should plan the reunion events a year before they are scheduled.

You should allocate enough time for organizing what you plan. You might have to make special requests for catering, or simply to visit somewhere special. Make sure that everybody is on the same page, you don't want two people ordering the same thing!

You should use a planner to organize your reunion event, this should contain a time line showing reminders, and scheduling meetings. A meal planner, and reunion requirements lists are also very important parts of any reunion planner.

It can be difficult to get money to fund your reunion event, it's always difficult to find out how many people will want to come to the event. The best advice is to plan the event as early as possible that has lots of fun events for the whole family to enjoy.

A great idea is to have an auction and auction off some prized family heirlooms to other family members! Make sure you do this in the middle of the party though, if you do it at the end it's likely everybody will be too tired.

If you want to make some money to fund your event, then why not consider having a rummage sale, collect lots of CD's and DVD's, everybody will love looking through all of these.

As long as you put enough time aside to plan your reunion event it doesn't have to be such a scary task. A family reunion can be fun for everybody, even you!

Marie Christianson is a senior business analyst at Looking for family reunion ideas, locations, or planning tips?

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Why A Cruise Is Such A Great Value, What’s Included And What’s Not?

Cruising is about nothing if it's not about having choices: sleeping in from a late night disco party or savoring a cup of latte as the sun rises over your balcony; dressing up for a formal night or lacing up for a run around an inline skating track. And every cruise line out there is competing for your attention, doing everything thing they can to lure you onboard.

You can have the vacation of a lifetime, see the world, completely unwind, take a walk on the wild side, dance the night away, feast on fabulous cuisine, learn something new, make friends, bond with your family, and steal quiet moments with your spouse. Whatever your heart desires, is yours, when you choose to cruise.

Cruising offers the best travel buy you can get for your money. It includes your meals, your cabin, you're out onboard activities, nighttime parties and all sponsored entertainment. Each ship is a complete resort and destination unto itself.

Cruise ships and holidays are a natural match: Both are in the good-times business. And when you sail during the holiday season you get the fun of built-in parties and feast-quality meals plus someone else to cook them, someone else to do the decorating and entertaining, and someone else to clean up the mess afterward. The only thing they don't do is write out your Christmas cards.

A cruise vacation removes 90% of the hassle of a land-based vacation. Your ship is your floating hotel, restaurant, resort, nightclub, tour office, and health club. You spend time enjoying your vacation, not waiting in hotel or rental car check-in lines.

On a traditional Vacation, the Family is pretty much stuck together, on a Cruise they are not. Each individual can pursue his or her interests and rejoin the Family at some prearranged time. Cruising is wonderful for Family Reunions because there is something for each generation to enjoy.

Expect to be pampered, massaged, and stuffed with culinary delights. Expect your imagination to wander, thinking of the ships of old. Expect to feel incredibly relaxed, exhilarated, caressed by sun, sand and wind; expect the unexpected. In short....RELAX and ENJOY!

Whether it’s a small family of 10 or a large group of 100, a cruise ship may be the best place for a reunion. Family reunion members seek accommodations they can use as a base for dining, sightseeing and socializing together. They want good children's programs, entertainment and activities. But they also want to make sure everyone in the group has personal time to pursue their own interests.

You are generally going to know what the cost of your vacation well be before you go. Your extra costs will be shore excursions, cocktails, spa treatments, beauty shop and casino gambling.

You can look at it as a prepaid vacation with extras of your choosing. Knowing what's included and what's not included allows you to budget your vacation spending more closely.

The cost of your cruise will depend on your choice of accommodations. These accommodations range from an inside Stateroom to a Suite with a Private Balcony overlooking the sea. Each Stateroom includes two twin beds or queen-size bed, bathroom, shower, TV and makeup table/desk.

When comparing the price of a cruise vacation versus a land-based holiday, consider that transportation, hotel, meals, entertainment and most activities are included. Even an all-inclusive land resort package can not top that (it doesn't go anywhere).

Cruising is the best way to experience a number of destinations that you may want to revisit for a longer period of time later.

Today's ships offer rock climbing, basketball, video arcades, swimming pools, spas, huge gyms with yoga and spinning classes, an indoor ice-skating rink and, yes, even mini-golf.

Remember, you only unpack once, no matter how many ports of call you visit. No checking in, or checking out and no running to make plane connections in order to get the next port. You'll be sleeping while the ship takes you to a new destination. Fall asleep in one place and awake to a new one and you’re already unpacked.

All your movies, shows and lounge entertainment are included.

You already have a seat at the best restaurant in town.

You have many choices for shopping, touring, entertainment and sports activities.

Cruise travel is for everyone who wants to have the best possible vacation at the best possible price.

Choose to cruise for CUISINE. Tantalize your taste buds with gourmet fare that showcases exotic ingredients, old standbys like pizza and ice cream or spa cuisine for a healthy alternative. Depending on your mood, dine in a traditional ballroom setting, a small bistro or a casual eatery.

Carbohydrate Counter Menus are the latest rage among the Cruise Lines.

Don't forget the 24-hour room service, which is also free.

Here’s a cruise tip: Choose to cruise for ROMANCE. Secluded beaches, in suite dining on a balcony overlooking the ocean and spa services for two are just some of the romantic pursuits available.

In many cruise reviews, cruising routinely earned the highest ratings in customer satisfaction among all vacation categories.

When you try cruising for the first time, you will be hooked. The one major complaint the Cruise lines hear over and over again, is that cruises end far too soon!

What's not included in your cruise?

Typically those items and services there are of a personal nature are extra. Most alcoholic beverages, soft drinks, the salon services, shore excursions, shipboard gift and sundries purchases, Internet usage, long-distance phone calls, tips, casino gaming and your transportation to and from your cruise, are extra cost.

So what are you waiting for? Set Sail!

Happy Cruising!

By: Mary Hanna

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About the Author Mary Hanna has traveled the world by Air and Ship while writing eBooks, Software Reviews and Practical Articles on Internet Marketing, Cruising, Gardening and Cooking. Visit her websites at: and

Your Guide to Planning an Awesome Family Reunion

There are very few things, if any, in life that are as important as our beloved family, and with careers, weddings, children, and other life changing events, families tend to lose touch with one another despite their best intentions. A reunion is the ideal way to get reacquainted with long lost relations as well as for getting together with lour immediate family to create plenty of new, happy memories.

Handling The Initial Details

Creating the Guest List: Before even beginning to plan the guest list, you will first will need to decide what type of reunion to have, a smaller affair with grandchildren and first cousins, or a more elaborate event with numerous generations of extended family spanning all over the family tree.

Planning the Expense: Once you are aware of how many families will probably be involved you will have a better idea of what type of budget to have set up. Decide if it is going to be a low-cost affair with everyone bringing covered dishes, snacks, and drinks, or if the costs will be split up evenly amongst the families attending if you are utilizing a caterer or making the food yourself.

Picking a Date and Time: Most reunions are held over a weekend in the summer so children will not miss school and more people will find it easy receive time off from work. For large reunions with numerous guests, schedule the event early in the day so those arriving from out-of-town have plenty of time to get settled in before the fun starts. Some reunions are so big that a lot of families have two-day events rather than one to ensure that everyone receives an opportunity to visit and take part in various activities together.

Choosing a Venue: Although many reunions are outdoors, the weather can be so unpredictable it really is vital that you have a good clear back-up plan in place just in case the weather does not cooperate on the day of the big event. Possible sites for a family reunion include Amusement Parks, Cruise ships, Country Clubs, Hotels, Parks, The Beach, Your own Backyard

The Invitations

Invitations for a family reunion will more than likely be one to two pages of details rather than the standard varieties of invitations sent for parties and other events. You will want to be sure your guests know exactly what to expect, how much money they will be required to contribute, what they will need bring, and just how they should dress for the day. It is also a wise idea to send out a letter first, letting everyone know about the upcoming event so those who wish to participate and help you will likely have an opportunity to do this.

Games and Prizes

Besides the number of usual party games including three-legged races, water balloon tosses, hot potato, charades, and musical chairs, there are several other fun and simple activities you can use at your family reunion to encourage interaction between your attendees, spark some old memories and create tons of new ones.

The Address Exchange: A great low-cost idea for keeping in touch with everyone long after the reunion is over is the address exchange. Everybody has received many sets of free address labels through the mail from one organization or another, or many of us have special personalized labels of our own for using on correspondence, and this is a perfect use for all of them.

Using a computer, a printer, plus some plain paper you can actually print out sheets for guests to affix their labels plus a blank line for writing down their email or website addresses should they wish. The "Address Exchange Station" should be located near the place where guests will arrive where they can then attach their labels, one on each sheet of paper. At the end of the event, each guest can take a sheet home with them that is filled with all address labels of the family members that attended the reunion.

Recipe Swap: Family recipes are generally transferred from one generation to the next, but quite often these coveted recipes get lost in time or essential ingredients are long forgotten. By having a reunion swap, everyone from the family can share their own personal special recipes and figure out how to create Grandma's prize-winning chocolate cake. Note somewhere within the invitations that everyone should bring a recipe if they want to be involved in the swap.

Reunion Favors: Favors are not simply weddings and baby showers anymore. They can also be a very good way of thanking everyone for attending the family reunion and a way to give everyone a special keepsake. This can be an especially nice touch if you have several families coming from different parts of the nation. Favors could be personalized using the first letter of the family's last name, or possibly be reflective of their heritage.

Family Members Talent Show: All families have at the very least a few people that tend to be more than pleased to perform in front of everyone for a couple of laughs, and children always like to dress-up and have a good time. Enlist the help of a handy family member and get them to construct a make-shift stage from some pieces of plywood and after that hang some old blankets behind it to function as the curtain or backdrop. Decide beforehand if you will have single or group acts and award little prizes for first, second, and third places after the rest of the relatives cast their ballots. If there is a great story teller in the group have them relate some family stories, funny memories or some tall tales. This is sure to stir up memories in the older generation and the younger generation may learn a thing or two about grandpa.

More Helpful Hints for Reunion Planning

Ask one or two members of the family in advance to serve as the photographers for the event. In this technological age of digital photos plus the internet, sharing pictures with everyone is easier than ever.

Ask someone else to be the family historian and mingle throughout the crowd taking notes and jotting down points of interest and special accomplishments to later be assembled in a family newsletter that is later sent out to all of the guests and also to the people who were not able to attend.

Make sure to begin planning the reunion as early as possible, and booking the venue a year in advance is the best option to ensure you should have the date you wish as well as give everyone a lot of time for them to prepare to attend.

Reunion Supplies You Will Require

- Cameras, film, batteries

- Decorations

- Games

- Keepsakes

- Invitations, envelopes

- Paper

- Paper Products; cups, plates, napkins, etc.

- Postage

- Prizes

- Refreshments; food, drinks, snacks

Bennetta Elliott a writer for Personalized Gift Express which sells []unique personalized gifts and favors for every occasion. They offer a great variety of []family reunion favors at volume discounts.

Article Source: [] Your Guide to Planning an Awesome Family Reunion

Family Reunion: Lodging and Transportation

Finding a place to hold your carefully-planned family reunion is as important a step as any other. It comes after careful deliberation by members of the committee tasked to handle the destination and logistics of travel. But how do you exactly choose the place, how do you come up with a good idea where to hold the family reunion best?
Within the sphere of planning for your family reunion destination are two important elements: lodging and transportation.

A good place is essential in keeping the interest of your family reunion guests and making it a fun experience. So equally important are the ways on how you can reach your destination and how you will be accommodated.

Lodging and transportation are two essential steps before you can plan on the other details of your family reunion, like games, activities, and others.


There are five important factors that can affect your choice of lodging, and which you must carefully consider.

1. Quantity of guests
The number of guests will decide where you must hold your family reunion. Obviously a big family reunion requires a big venue like a resort or pavilion, or even a hotel ballroom.

But if you have only thirty or so people on your guest list, perhaps a reserved portion of a restaurant will do, or even a backyard owned by one of the family's members.

2. Nature of guests
Of course if your guests are mostly children, you could not pretty much put them in log cabins or other rough and tumble accommodations, the way matured guests could.
Younger guests will prefer livelier accommodations like theme parks, while matured guests may choose calmer locations like stately rest houses where they can relax.
It is very important to make your guests feel comfortable and very interested with their surroundings.

3. The extent of your budget
Budget constraints can affect your choice of lodging. If you are on a low budget, you can opt having a small family reunion at a camping site or bringing your own trailer along.

However if you are capable to spend, you can accommodate your guests at a hotel or resort. It is still important to keep comfort in mind. Various family reunion websites offer suggestions for lodging.

4. Safety
Another consideration in your choice of lodging is the safety of your guests. Does the resort have sufficient night watchmen? Does the camp site have security fences to keep away dangerous animals?

Or does the hotel bear enough emergency routes in case of fires, earthquakes, or other calamities?

5. Availability of space
A lot of people prefer the great outdoors for the vastness of space available for various activities.

Space is indeed a deciding factor. It is important to have enough legroom at your destination, for various planned activities like family reunion games and other functions.

So before handing out your family reunion invitations, it will be useful to consult with other family members, so that your guests will feel comfortable with your planned family reunion destination.


But ensuring your accommodations is just one part of the sphere. The other is accessing it.

Access to your destination is a critical consideration in planning for your family reunion. After considering your budget, and schedule, how do you book your transportation for a comfortable and hassle-free trip?

Here are some tips.

– Choose which travel agency or transport service provider, do you think serves you best. You can check a list of transport providers, on a lot of family reunion websites.

– In choosing your transport provider, make a balancing of both price and quality of service (usually you can have a hint of this by asking others regarding the reputation of the transport provider).

– Make sure the transport company has insurance coverage for both you and your luggage in case of emergencies.

– Book your trip early. Some transportation providers like airlines offer discounts on early reservations.

– Update on your reservation, about one or two weeks before your scheduled trip. This will inform you of any changes or delays, or if your trip will hopefully continue as scheduled.

– Prepare your body for the long haul ahead. Usually, family reunion destinations are far off and will require hours of travel, so plan ahead. Make sure you are psyched up for the trip and ready for any circumstances that may arise during your travel.

In planning your family reunion, never overlook both accommodations during your travel and your stay. Comfortable reunion guests are happy guests, and happy guests will result to a lively and memorable family reunion. Careful planning and decision-making on both lodging and transportation are keys to a successful family reunion.

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About the AuthorMarie Christianson is a senior business analyst at Visit to create a family reunion website or for more articles and resources!

Planning Your Family Reunion at Disneyworld

There are many reasons to consider having your next family reunion at Disneyworld. The fun activities for family members of all ages are sure to make it an event to remember. With Florida's warm climate, you can plan your get together for any time of year. If family members live in colder regions, you might consider timing the reunion as a welcome winter retreat. Traveling off-season can also result in substantial savings, so investigate your options, as well as the possibility of group rates.

Putting one or two people in charge of planning and research is a good idea in order to help you find the best deals, stay organized, and make sure that everyone gets to take advantage of the same information. Although it can be difficult to avoid, you don't want to create any unnecessary family tension! Have someone act as travel coordinator, to help arrange carpools where possible and take your reunion on the road. If the cost is going to be much greater for some family members, perhaps the group as a whole would be interested in dividing up the costs more evenly. There are plenty of options for creating an equitable and enjoyable vacation for everyone at your family get together.

Once there, organize some time for everyone to spend together, as well as time for mini teams to explore their own areas of interest. Adults could take turns supervising the youngest children, as well as get in some good visiting time while the youngsters are on the kiddie rides. Teens will likely want to go off on their own for part of the time, which should be fine as long as meeting times and places are well planned and adhered to. Try to have at least one cell phone per group in order to keep things flowing smoothly.

If your group is staying at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel, you may qualify for numerous special benefits and services, including assistance planning your itinerary, photo opportunities, and more. Look into what they have to offer for a simplified party planning process. Your family reunion can be tailored to your unique needs and interests, offering something for everyone. Whatever level of planning assistance you desire, Disney experts are there to help you every step of the way.

Disneyworld features numerous attractions and dining locations that are suitable for larger parties, so explore your options and choose a few experiences that everyone can enjoy together. With so much to choose from, the Kilimanjaro Safaris, the nightly fireworks display or watercraft rentals are just a few of the recommended activities for groups who want to enjoy their Disney experience together. It isn't often that all the age groups find something to share, so make the most of this special opportunity to reunite the whole family. Don't forget to take lots of pictures!

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About the Author:
John Murray publishes a Disney World blog filled with helpful articles, ideas and thoughts about Disneyworld .