Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Gotta love cousins

I was not properly thankful for my cousins growing up. I didn't realize that having cousins just my age was a real rarity and a blessing. I took for grated that I had friends at every family function. My dad's family had boys my sister and my age and they taught us the finer art of losing at Mario Brothers and how to stay away from the wayward spool stool in the basement. On my mom's side of the family we had girls our age and we enjoyed playing barbies with them and watching Goonies -- "Follow those size 5s!"

Now that I am grown I am so thankful for my cousins. Just check out my sidebar to see links to all of them. I have cousins coming out my ears! We've stayed close during the years and I still love seeing them at family functions and on our own. It's a great experience to know my cousins all grown up. No longer do the older boys pick on me and instead we have mature conversations -- okay, occasionally we have mature conversations. 

Seeing my children now interact with their cousins is great fun. The siblings in both of our families didn't sit down and try to plans births within months of each other, it just happened. Emma and Mandy have 6 cousins on one side (and one the way) and 2 on the other. The girls assume friendship because they are family. No questions asked. Well, there are a few questions, but mostly they just play.

Last week two of my nephews came over for the afternoon. As we drove to our house, I over- heard the following conversation between Josh and Emma:

E: I have lots of toys at my house!

J: Do you have army guys?

E: No. I have Barbies and princess dresses and a princess movie and Baby 1. (said in a sing-song-y voice sure to entice any girl, but not a macho boy)

J: Do you have legos?

E: Ya

J: Why don't you have army guys?

E: I have a boy Barbie you can play with.

J: It is a guy?

E: No, just a little boy.

J: I only play with guy ones like GI O.

(Later that day I found them playing with Barbies, then they hunted bad men while Emma wore her princess dress).

Like a good auntie, I let them watch a movie. Humpty Dumpty, Jack and the Bean Stock, or Clifford. Which would you choose? (Thanks Heidi for making their day by giving Emma these movies).

Oh, the joys of occational media entertainment... The kids get along so well it was a happy diversion for our afternoon.

Today we went to Bentonstown. That is the town where Benton lives and Emma and Mandy always enjoy going to see them and the Children's Museum too.

Mandy spots her cousins coming across the street. We love those guys!

It was such a beautiful day today. In the sunshine it felt warm and wonderful. Speaking of cousins, my little cousins Lisa (who went and grew up on me without asking my permission) wrote an amazing piece on sunny days. I really loved reading it. Check it out here.

I couldn't get these 4 to look at me at the same for anything. Oh, well. They are still cute and the Children's museum awaits. 

Just try and resist Mandy and Nathaniel in this next shot.... 

Can you feel the sunshine on your face? They were basking in the sunlight. Yes, their cheeks are just as pinchable and kissable as they appear.

This next picture has absolutely nothing to do with cousins, I just couldn't resist posting it. I love that I have a daughter who still lets me dress her.


simplykersh said...

Glad I could help with the day with the videos, of the three I would have picked (read: would have been forced to watch) Clifford, since it is the only one we had ever made it all the way through - it isn't scary. That last picture of Mandy is sooo cute, I can't believe she is only a month older than Clara. She is so grown up!

Kellie said...

You're so lucky to have cousins your age! I'm not very close to any of my cousins, mostly because we all live so far apart and they're so much younger then me. Our kids have no cousins and aren't likely to have any for some time. I kind of feel bad about that!

Cathy said...

Cousins are definitely special!

Lindsay said...

Very cute pictures. Great idea taking them with the river and bridge in the background. They look really cool.

I only have 4 cousins and 3 are way older. I am so thankful that my kids have lots of cousins. 12 in all and most are fairly close in age. It's fun!

Choco Girl said...

I love Mandy's cute! Great pictures..what a nice day!

Melanie said...

One on the way?!? Who's expecting? Not... my cousin?

Andee said...

Loves his cousins too. All 6 girl cousins (we were worried there for a bit) and 2 boy cousins with another baby boy on the way. You know what I love? Sisters who take great pictures. They are super handy to have around!

John and Kelly and our lambs: Joshua, Jacob, Josiah said...

How fun! My boys couldn't wait to tell me about all the bad guys they "shot" at Emma's. Jake kept saying, "There is alot, alot, alot of bad guys to hunt at Emma's" Thank you so much for watching them!

Janelle Rispler said...

As I sit in Medford anticipating a move, I feel a bit sad that my kids won't have cousins close by. (What a fun combination of family and friend cousins are.) Nate does talk about visiting his cousins (who lived in Medford) with great fondness. We'll just have to make those moments with cousins extra special since they will be rare.

Sara said...

Yes, cousins are the best! Some of my fondest memories growing up include playing (and working!) with my cousins. I, too, was blessed to have several cousins close in age and, although we didn't live really close, that we still got to visit many times a year. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same for my child(ren). Abby has two cousins on Kevin's side of the family that are teenagers and the cousins on my side span from ages 16 to 8, with one younger boy who is 2 1/2 (Solomon). Thank goodness for second cousins to visit during the holidays! =)

Sara said...

By the way, I love, love, LOVE that last picture of Mandy!

Jessi Reber said...

You didn't appreciate your cousins growing up?! :)At first I thought I always did..but it wasn't until high school that I got it! My mom insisted that family make the best friends, and she was right! :) I only have 2 cousins (you and Andee if you didn't know :) but what I lacked in quantity was made up for in quality!