Sunday, November 7, 2021

Sunday Stealing - Family/Framily edition


1. How big is your immediate family? Who are the members? My original immediate family – I have two sisters. I’m the baby. One sister is 8 years older and the other is 13 years older. Our parents have been dead many years. My “now” immediate family is me, hubby, one daughter and one son-in-law with a 2 year old and one son and one daughter-in-law with a 5 year old.

Here we are last November - we are having
family photos taken next Saturday for this

2. Who are you closest to in your family? What kind of relationship do you have with that person? Is it like friendship? I’m very close to the sister who is 8 years older. We were still living at home when our mom died and I actually lived with her and her now ex-husband for a while. I’m also close to both of our kids. Our daughter calls almost every day and we chat. Hubby and I are as different as night and day so many of our leisure activities are different BUT as empty nesters, we have become much closer. I think Covid and all of those months of staying at home also made us closer.

3. Which day of the year are you most likely to spend with your family? It is rare for me and my sisters to spend any specific day of the year together. Middle sister lives many hours away and older sister lives about an hour away. We usually spend Thanksgiving with our kids and my husband’s immediate family.

4. As a child, did you go on family trips? What do you remember about those vacations? We went to the beach almost every summer for a week. I think my parents must have scrimped and saved so that we could go. We ate most meals in the little houses we rented. We usually went to Captain Anderson’s or some other seafood restaurant for one meal which was always a treat!

5. Is there a black sheep in your family? What is different about them? I don’t think we have a black sheep.

6. Do you know your extended family? How many of them have you met? I know my first cousins on my mom and dad’s side of the family. Hubby has lots of first cousins and we know them, too. I did 23 and me several years ago and I need to try to meet some of those folks.

7. Have you ever been to a family reunion? How was it? We’ve had family gatherings but not in many years. When I was a child, we went to “the first Sunday of May” decoration day. It was at a tiny church and people brought Sunday lunch to be shared together after the service. I think they called it “dinner on the grounds” and they had a concrete picnic table where they spread out the food. I think the point was to “decorate” the graves of your family members. I don’t remember ever decorating any graves. I remember meeting a few other relatives but since our parents and grandparents are no longer living . . .I have no idea where they live or even their names at this point.

8. Who are you most proud of among your relatives? Who do you look up to? My daddy was pretty amazing and actually so was our mom.  My daddy dropped out of school and I assume he got his GED if they did that back then. He was a carpenter and then an engineer for the L & N Railroad. My mom was placed in “foster care” (before there was foster care so I have no idea who she was living with) and she overcame a lot. I don’t know if the families were nice to her.

9 What characteristics have you inherited from your parents? Do you look like them? Do you behave like they do? I look a lot like our mom. Years ago at a funeral, one of my mother’s step brothers came up to me and said, “oh my goodness – you look just like your mom did.” One of her other step-brothers would always whisper in my ear, “you look just like your mama.” Those words were balm to my soul. My daddy had a temper and I have to constantly fight that tendency. As I get older, I also find myself slipping in a colorful word or two . . .and he “cussed” like a sailor!

10. Does your family have any heirlooms? Will you inherit anything that has been in the family a long time? We don’t have any that I know of! I have a quilt that my grandmother made for me when I was a child. My daddy was a blue collar worker so we were never wealthy.

11. What happens to old people in your family? Do they live with younger family members or move to a retirement home? How would you prefer to spend your old age? My parents never made it to old age so I don’t know how that would have been. My husband’s mother is having a difficult time right now (she is 96) and her children are taking turns spending the night with her in her home and we have sitters during part of each day.

12. If you are married, how well do you get along with your in-laws? My mother-in-law has been a mother to me far longer than I even knew my own mother. She has been a wonderful mother-in-law. I think I get along ok with my sisters-in-law and also my brothers-in-law.

hubby's side of the family (in-laws) at our
daughter's wedding. We are missing one
nephew in this photo.

13. What do people mean when they say, “you can choose your friends, but you can’t choose your family”? This saying is very true. Our family is our family – period.

14. If you live far away from some members of your family, how do you keep in touch? How often do you communicate? I talk to one sister almost every day and I talk to the other sister every three or four weeks. As I said above, I talk with our daughter almost every day and I talk with our son at least once a week.

15. Are you so close to any of your friends that you consider them to be like family? YES! YES! YES! We have been in a supper club since 2004 and those people are framily. We not only gather together monthly but we pray for each other and keep up with each other’s families. I'm also in a friend group with 3 women and we get together once a month for lunch. They are definitely framily - I don't have a single picture of the four of us together. I thought I did!! There are also a few young adults who we think of as family. As I'm typing, I'm realizing how many friends we consider framily. We met a younger couple on a trip a couple of years ago and I think of them as framily, too!

The four friends on the left are definitely my
sisters and I claim the one on the far right, too.
Our daughter is the pregnant one in the middle
and the young women - one on the left
and two on the right -- I claim them as
extra daughters.