It’s all about family
by Sally Litchfield
MDJ Feature editor
sallylit@bellsouth.net
December 23, 2012 12:14 AM | 3733 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A group of families have held a Christmas Party together for many years. Participants include (from left, bottom level) Jo Ann and Harlon Crimm of Marietta, Vic and Carol Tobler of Kennesaw, (from left, stairs) Ken and Sue Hardy of Woodstock, Anne and Jim McCann of Kennesaw, and Jerry and Barbara George of Marietta. <br>Emily Barnes
A group of families have held a Christmas Party together for many years. Participants include (from left, bottom level) Jo Ann and Harlon Crimm of Marietta, Vic and Carol Tobler of Kennesaw, (from left, stairs) Ken and Sue Hardy of Woodstock, Anne and Jim McCann of Kennesaw, and Jerry and Barbara George of Marietta.
Emily Barnes
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Jo Ann Crimm (left) and Barbara George laugh as they attend the party hosted by the McCanns.
Jo Ann Crimm (left) and Barbara George laugh as they attend the party hosted by the McCanns.
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The McCanns have decorated their home with holiday items for the gathering.
The McCanns have decorated their home with holiday items for the gathering.
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From left, Jerry George, Harlon Crimm and Jim McCann stand together at the party hosted by the McCanns.
From left, Jerry George, Harlon Crimm and Jim McCann stand together at the party hosted by the McCanns.
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Hors d’oeuvres are served at the gathering. From 20 people, the tradition has grown to 44 with families bringing their children. “We even have one great grandchild who is coming now,” said McCann, who has three grown children and six grandchildren.
Hors d’oeuvres are served at the gathering. From 20 people, the tradition has grown to 44 with families bringing their children. “We even have one great grandchild who is coming now,” said McCann, who has three grown children and six grandchildren.
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Anne and Jim McCainn
Anne and Jim McCainn
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Tomorrow evening, four generations of families will gather at the home of Anne and Jim McCann. Since 1973, the five families have celebrated the season together on Christmas Eve.

When the McCanns moved to Marietta, they had no family in the area. They reached out to their neighbors in Forest of Arden Subdivision whose families also lived elsewhere.

“We created our own little family. We started a tradition,” Anne McCann said.

Each Dec. 24, the McCanns celebrate with the families of Joanne and Harlon Crimm, Barbara and Jerry George, Sue and Ken Hardy, and Carol and Vic Tobler.

“(Christmas Eve) was very small. It was just close neighbors,” McCann said.

From 20 people, the tradition has grown to 44 with families bringing their children.

“We even have one great grandchild who is coming now,” said McCann, who has three grown children and six grandchildren.

Though all the original families have moved from the subdivision, they continue to celebrate together each year at the McCann home.

“We still get together on Dec. 24. We always had it at our house,” said McCann, who moved to Kennesaw in 1991.

“Some years people are missing but as a rule most everybody shows up,” she said.

When the tradition first started, children enjoyed cookies and juice and the adults had cocktails and hors d’oeuvres. Eventually the custom evolved into an annual dinner where families bring something to accompany the entrée that Anne makes. “It’s just a big dinner,” McCann said.

Christmas Eve for this group is not about the food and drink.

“Family is your life. It’s the core of everything. It was important when I was growing up,” McCann explained.

“A lot of times we don’t see each other much during the year but we always think of this group as the family we get together with,” she said.

“We didn’t have family here. These people became our family,” she said.
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