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Mark Angelo Askew is the author of "Fimark's Family Reunion Planner Guide Workbook and Keepsake" and the founder and director of the Family Reunion Planning Group that established November as Annual Family Reunion Planning Month.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Family Reunion Planning Reminders

Weekend Reminders

Family reunion planners, we are heading into May. Nothing is more important at this time then following-up and wrapping up all event planning loose ends. See your Complete Family Reunion Planner personal event planning interface timeline to keep up-to-date with tasks.

Answer these questions:
1. T-shirt orders out? (see T-shirt panel on the event planner interface)
2. Keepsake Reunion Booklet complete? (see booklet icon)
3. Camera media and batteries purchased? (see Store panel)
4. Complete itinerary sent out? (see theme selector panel/itinerary icon)
5. All outdoor and indoor event supplies acquired? (see Budget and Store panels)
6. Are all department volunteers and committee members on the same page regarding tasks, deadlines, times and places to meet for setup?
(Access all department worksheets on the Workbooks panel)

Money Saving Tips
Need to save money? Here are three money saving tips and one new money saving feature in your complete Family Reunion Planner 3.0 intereface.

1. Ask attendees to donate supplies to the event such as grills, decorations, lawn furniture, canopies, coolers, music equipment, etc.

2. Have attendees purchase there own last minute t-shirts online. (See T-shirt Designer panel)

3. Ask family members to donate services toward the event in exchange for advertising in the Family Reunion Keepsake booklet. Such services may include photography, Keepsake CDrom, DJ, Catering, discounted travel packages, limo services, etc.

4. Get free printables - Patrons of the Complete Famiiy Reunion Planner 3.0 can download all 5 reunion theme printable packages at no additional cost. Each package includes theme based Reunion themed poems, reunion cards, flyers, invitations, banners, honorary award certificates, t-shirts, caps and aprons. Use the link on the family reunion planner dashboard called "Get Theme Printables Here."

You can download theme based printables and print them yourself or edit and order prints online. Bulk discounts apply to select print orders. Free shipping available on seasonal/select products at*/ or go to 

Access the Print Shop from your Complete Family Reunion Planner Interface. If you purchased the Family Reunion Planner at any time between 2005 and 2010 you are entitled to the online access link to the Family Reunion Planner 3.0. Simply send your purchase number to

Those using the evaluation version of the family planner are directed to the public theme printables page at where theme based printables can be purchased and downloaded.

Don't have Fimark's Family Reunion Planner yet? Enjoy season discounts on the complete family reunion planner and save up to $35. Regular price $99. Discounted as low as $65 at

Happy Family Reunion Planning!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

An International Celebration

What wonderful family reunions this family must have. Herbert and Zelma have been married for 86 years. Both over were over 100 years of age when this picture was taken. They received a signed commendation from President Obama with a promise of an official invitation to the White House to meet him.  

Does this handsome couple hold the Guinness World Record for the longest marriage of a living couple?

Down in the Guinness Book of World Records they're long lasting marriage was pinned.

The couple actually have a twitter page. When asked what is their secret to staying together so long. Zelma says “There isn’t any secret. It was only God that kept us together.” 

Herbert and Zelma live in the home he built in 1942. They enjoy the visits of their grandchildren and great grandchildren. A testimony to the endurance of true love as written in a 
best-selling 1900 year old ancient guidebook: "love endures all things... love never fails" Congratulations Herbert and Zelma and Happy 86th Wedding Anniversary!

For more tips on developing an enduring marriage read the closing 10 pages of our book "Fimark's My Keepsake Wedding Planneran excellent gift for those recently engaged. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Words of Wisdom and Movitation

Some words of wisdom and motivation for all our 2012 family reunion planners out there.

so live!

"Life does not have to be perfect to be wonderful."

That's our motto.

"Some people look for a beautiful place. Others make a place beautiful."

Great wedding or family reunion slogan

"Individually we are special. Together we are spectacular"

indeed."Where there is love, there is life."

Visit my Pinterest "Well Said" board for more inspiration.

A Book of Wisdom: Fimark's Family Reunion Planner. Everything you need to plan a memorable family reunion. Includes the popular family reunion poem "Finding Our Way Back Home."

This family reunion planning guide includes a timeline planner, checklists, budget list, themes and associated itineraries and dinner programs.     The keepsake features include a signature of ownership page, an event details page, an event planning journal and a family recipe compiler complete with sections to record the history behind the family recipe. And it also includes one of Mark Askew's popular family reunion poems "Finding Our Way Home."
Happy family reunion planning!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A Fresh Family Reunion Theme

While family reunions often feature traditional activities such as recipe swaps, a family music list, familiar stories and outside games many times families intend on digging deep into one's history and sharing it in an organized meaningful and exciting way. But good intentions are often met with distractions and a project long left undone.

That's where a good planning guide comes in. With it you're able to schedule and track tasks until the project is complete.

One of the most meaningful family reunion themes provided in "Fimark's Family Reunion Planner and Keepsake" book  and application tools is one centered around family genealogy projects. Most families usually have one or more members who collect family photos, memorabilia, articles and clippings centered around the family. Now they can present them at the reunion event in a deeply impacting way.

The Genealogy and Homestead Tour Reunion Planner
To help families get their research work off the ground and in the family reunion program Fimark Home Online and Legendary Heritage Heirlooms would like to introduce the Genealogy and Homestead Tour Family Reunion Themed Planner.

The Family Reunion Planner guides you thru the process of throwing a successful and enriching genealogy family reunion. With online tools that help you do your genealogy research, you'll have your family reunion event planned, organized and ready to manage in just a few hours using Fimark's Family Reunion Planner 3.0 and/or book. Get the complete family reunion planner package with instant download at

Fimark Home Online has been developing family reunion planners since 2004 and each release just keeps getting better. Get the Genealogy and Homestead Tour Family Reunion Themed Planner -  Includes a logo, matching invitations, theme banner, access to matching t-shirt, cap and apron ready to edit and order online. You also get the family reunion planner software and workbook.

Other themes in the planner package include:
Family Reunion Cruise Theme
Family Reunion Family Fest Theme
Traditional Family Reunion Theme
Living Legends Ball Theme

Preview the family reunion theme planner and themed printables at...

The Books that Bond
Plan your family reunion with "Fimark's Family Reunion Planner and Keepsake" Save 30% during our spring savings special.

Family members who are engaged will love learning how to save money, budget and fully bond to their partner following the wedding planning activities in our new book "Fimark's My Keepsake Wedding Planner". Makes a great gift.

Buy both books and get free shipping at

Happy Family Reunion Planning

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Getting Help With Family Reunion Tasks

Wearing Lots of Hats?
Well I guess it's official. I am now recognized as a writer, author, artist and yes, musician.
Titles are one thing, but I actually love what I do. Still if someone were to ask; Mark, how you do it? It would be much easier to just show them the finished product.

I'm the kind of guy who likes to do it all myself. Admittedly that means taking full responsibility for all tasks and assignments. If you don't mind being the fall guy or love the sheer delight of complete exhaustion I highly recommend it. Still even I have to ask for help now and then.

When you're getting close to deadlines getting needed support can seem almost impossible. That said, when winding down the final action items on your reunion task list consider getting support from other family members as soon as possible.

Getting Reunion Task Help
It's important to get help when planning a large family reunion. If attendees are 15 or more don't attempt to plan and manage it all yourself. Your  first step is to put the word out and get volunteers and ideas from the family. Sometimes to get help you do have to barter. People need to know what's in it for them. So put together a list of the benefits of the event and throw in an appreciation gift of some sort if you need to.

Next form a reunion planning group or committee. Then get rock solid guidance from an experienced family reunion planner, join a family reunion workshop or get your hands on a reunion planning workshop text book. How do you go about select a good event planning book? Consider the authors profile.

Family Reunion Book Features
Here are a few author profile and content features for the book "Fimark's Family Reunion Planner"

1. Written by an experienced reunion planner
2. Written by an experienced family member
3. Written by family counselors
4. Written by a husband and wife team
5. Contains priority information regarding planning, organizing and managing your reunion
6. Connects to resources with even more information
7. Includes 5 complete reunion planners
8. Includes the in demand checklist timeline planning format
9. Includes guides tips and words of wisdom
10. Include scores of department worksheets
11. Includes The Authors signature family reunion poems such as "Finding Our Way Back Home"
12. Includes complete luncheon/dinner programs and recommended daily itineraries.

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Seasonal Book Sale
"Fimark's Family Reunion Planner" is now on sale for 17.99. Regularly priced 29.00 at and Buy two books and qualify for free shipping.

Get the full reunion event planning package including the book and CD with great templates and printables and spreadsheet application for $69 and save $30 on the regular price. Plus free shipping. For more information go to

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Crafts: Family Reunion Table Settings

What a ball we had last summer. It was a veritable feast in the park. Our family and friends love to cook and eat and work it off with fun activities. Somehow the grills, the smells of simmering and roasting food set it all  off just right. Yum!

Still you want everyone to keep in mind the theme of the occasion so they will anticipate theme related activities and prepare to work and play in harmony with the theme.

Remember to plan to decorate the family reunion venue in harmony with the theme. The items you chose to decorate has   much to do with that. The theme we chose last summer was centered around having fun with our children.

We called it "Fun In The Park." So we decorated with the fun activities in mind.

Activities included the kite flying, dodge ball, bubble blowing contests, a bible drama, water balloon relay and winning and eating lots of snacks.

Water Balloons: The kids could not wait to get their hands on these. As a matter of fact some did try.

We had to post a guard around them for fear the balloons would all disappear before the games began. 

Bubble Blowing Contest: This captivated the kids for hours...

and hours...
Brenda made beautiful table centerpieces based on the theme.

Table Centerpieces Made of Bags of Candy

What You Need:
1. Spindles of colored ribbon
2. Party bags
3. Wrapped and boxed candies (Choose candies that hold up on warm sunny days.)
4. Helium filled balloons (Any size or shape will do.)
5. Scissors

Sort the candies so a few of each kind goes in each bag. Fill the bags evenly. Run the edge of your scissors over about 12 inches of the ribbon to produce a twirl on the end of the ribbon string. Tie the ribbon in a knot around the bag opening leaving about 10 inches to twirl about the bag. Attach the other end of the ribbon to the helium filled balloons. Place the bags evenly along the center of the picnic tables.

The colorful ribbons, balloons, party bags and the sweet smell of candies will raise the fun and excitement to the next level.

Happy Family Reunion Planning!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

So Precious

This weekend Brenda and I enjoyed our granddaughter for two full days and one night. This was the second time she spent the night with her grands. Her personality is blossoming. Bubbly and full of wonder.

I've yet to sing her a lullaby, blow bubbles or run around the park with her. But I can see that day will come soon, and when it does we'll be lost in wonderland. So precious will ours days be.

I only fear that she will grow up too fast on this side (the faster side) of the world in which we live. But I will do my best to show her all the wonders of nature, science and the arts. Most important will be teacher her to  deeply value, respect and dignify her relationship with others combined with the satisfaction that comes from seeing good for all her hard work.

It's In There

So you want to take your reunion planning to the next level? If you're an apps person who likes to work with online or stand-alone software just download the Family Reunion Planner software.

If you're a keepsake kind of person who likes to work from a hardbound or paperback book complete with worksheets, get Fimark's Family Reunion Planner Guide Workbook and Keepsake at

I love what Brenda and I have done with this book.
1. Contains priority information regarding planning, organizing and managing your reunion
2. Connects to resources with even more information
3. Include 5 complete reunion planners
4. Includes the in demand checklist timeline planning format
5. Includes guides tips and words of wisdom
6. Include scores of department worksheets
7. Includes Mark Askew signature poem "Finding Our Way Back Home"
8. Includes complete luncheon/Dinner programs and recommended daily itineraries.

Just after the event details page it opens with an excerpt from the poem "Finding Our Way Back Home". As you advance through the pages planning the event excerpts of the poem seem to follow you, helping you motivating you as you complete one task after another

There are keepsake journal entry pages and a family recipe compilation section. The Themes section details suggested activities and banquet dinner programs. Looks like you'll have your family reunion event planned and organized in no time at all.

Well Said

"The most beautiful thing I have ever seen, is that one should eat and drink and see good for all his hard work all the days of his life, for that is his portion."  Read other "Well Said" quotes on Pinterest at

What? Don't have Fimark's Award Winning Family Reunion Planner Yet?
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