Friday, May 28, 2010

Family first.

On the Biggest Loser, Sam and Koli always said, "Family first." You know, they are right.

When I was growing up, we were always with our cousins. We went back and forth, spending the night, having birthday parties, the big 4th of July blow-out, Memorial Day picnic and so forth.

A couple of weeks ago, we went to my cousin's daughters birthday. While I was there, my cousin Jenny asked, "So, when is K-'s birthday?"

"December 20."

"Make sure you let us know when her party is. We want to be certain to bring our kids up with the same cousin relationship that we had."

Boy, I felt bad. She didn't mean it that way, though. I explained that we didn't invite for a few reasons, but mainly because of K-'s birthday being December 20, I didn't want them to think that I was a present hog. Presents aren't necessary. She understood completely, but I appreciate her bringing it up.

LeAnne, my sister, has had a festival of birthday parties going on. My nephew's birthday is May 16. My niece laid birth claim to May 20. For the last two weekends, we've been partying on Sundays at my sister's house. This weekend we get a break (my SIL is in town, so we'll be with her), then we have two more. Her partner's daughter has a birthday June 9. My other niece is June 10. Each child is getting their own special birthday weekend. Why? Because my sister and I have birthdays three days apart. One year was one kid, the next year was the other. What did we get? School clothes in boxes. Everyone got what we got, but we got them wrapped up.

It kind of bummed us out. We were poor, though. Mom did the best that she could. Still, that is the main reason why my husband has declared gift giving holidays in our home to be frivilous items only. "If you want underwear, go buy them." Now, he has bought me jammies, a fleece sweat shirt and a nice sweater (because they were on my list), but he really only buys what could be termed as optional items.

Because of our birthdays, we are very birthday particular.

My point is, it's a lot of time to set aside every weekend. It is a chunk of at least 4 hours dedicated to just partyness.

Hubs and I talked last night at length. At first he thought it was a bit overkill, but I explained to him that if I had an opportunity to have K- spend some time with her cousins, I go out of my way to try to make it happen. I wouldn't consider otherwise. We want the kids to grow up together and not just in passing.

This weekend, my sister-in-law will be in town to run a 5k or 10k. (She's a marathon runner.) She'll be bringing her girls along. Where I admit that watching someone run is sometimes not the most exciting activity, we wouldn't consider not going. They all live in Chicago, so K- doesn't get the time with them that she does with her other cousins. We try to make the most that we can with the time that we get with them.

Hubs was close to his cousins. I was and am still very close to mine.

Family is a blessing that we believe she absolutely be cherished. We don't stand on formality. On my side of the family, we divide and conquer when it comes to the kids. We put kids in time-out if needed (if you were the one to see it, just deal with it), we bandage boo-boo's, issue hugs and referee. (Though that is an extremely rare occurrence.) We're not physical punishment people and know that each of us isn't going to go overboard.

I love that we co-parent when we're together.

So, we look toward a long weekend of family time together. May you be blessed with the same.

Smiles in my day:
- Figuring out the cause of the apparent humming migraine that I have. Now, if I can continue to keep it under control instead of having it roll back and forth, I'd be in business.
- Comfy summer dresses and being thankful enough that the weather is nice enough to enjoy them.
- A beautifully sunny day and sheets on the line.
- My sister and I working in force at the grocery to get her list handled.
- Hubs actually continuing to feel better after his funk last week.
- K- walking to school, holding my hand.
- My brother, Dumpy, has an extra 3/4 yard of black mulch and offered it to us. How wonderful! He doesn't even want anything for it. We needed some, but hadn't been able to get any delivered yet. So thoughtful!

Taking a bloggy break 'til Tuesday. Have a great weekend!


Sissy said...

I haven't figured out how I feel about birthday parties yet. I only remember a couple from when I was younger and they certainly weren't all out affairs. The current trend in my DH's family is to have parties, and the kids are only 2. I understood a first birthday party, but don't think the kids need anything bigger until they are old enough to remember it. My DH disagrees. Of course, I may feel different when we actually have kids, so it may change. We'll see.

Rach said...

I too was raised with cousins--lots and LOTS of cousins. :oP I'm saddened by the fact my girls won't have the opportunity to grow up in a similar environment. We get together with cousins whenever we can, but it's just not that often. :o( We are also family that parent each other's children. I firmly believe it takes a village to raise a child. :o)

As for those parties, well, I think I might just be exhausted! That makes for one busy, exciting weekend. Whew.

Speaking of which, enjoy your weekend, Amy! :o)

Together We Save said...

Hope you enjoy your weekend!!