Sunday, September 22, 2013

Seeing cousins...

Most of my family lives in Virginia or North Carolina or Georgia.  I do, however, have a cousin who lives in Lockhart, Texas, which is maybe an hour from where Bill and I live.  They had a birthday party yesterday and we were able to attend.

This particular cousin is my Uncle Ed's son, Andy.  Ed had four sons while my dad had four daughters.  One sibling had three daughters and a son; another had two sons; and the other three each had a son and a daughter.  So there were exactly eleven grandsons and eleven granddaughters.  I've lost count of how many great grandkids there are, especially since some of them are starting to have their own kids.

Andy's two eldest kids are daughters and both of them are pregnant.  They will be having their babies within weeks of each other sometime around December.  I didn't know them very well when they were growing up because they lived far from Virginia and it was expensive for them to visit.  And, of course, we never visited Texas.  Also, they were Jehovah's Witnesses at that time and didn't celebrate holidays... or so that was what my late Aunt Nance told me when I asked how they were doing.  Andy and his family were JWs... and eventually left the faith.  I don't know the whole story about that, though I did hear from an uncle that it was because a pedophile was promoted to leadership and they objected.

Anyway, Andy's wife's birthday is this week, so they threw her a great party in their big yard in Lockhart, Texas.  I wish we had brought Zane and Arran with us.  There were lots of dogs around and I think they would have enjoyed hanging out.  Andy cooked ribs on his big grill and there was lots of beer and margaritas...

A couple of weeks from now, they will have another party for one of the moms to be... we'll be there with bells on.  Probably the funniest moment last night was when Andy's daughter introduced me to her friends as her dad's cousin.  I laughed and said, "I'm YOUR cousin too, you know!"  It gets confusing, though, when the genealogy starts to get really extended.

Last night was a good reminder that my family can be a lot of fun, even as it's also very stressful to be around a lot of them for long periods of time.  My dad's side of the family is full of strong personalities with even stronger opinions.  But deep down, they are really good people with a good sense of fun.  I look forward to getting to know Andy and his family better, now that we live in Texas.

There was a pinata and these shots of pineapple Malibu rum fell out, as well as Aleve and candy...

Today, we'll probably visit a local winery because a friend of ours is displaying her art at a show the winery is hosting.  It should be fun and the weather has finally broken.  We have lots of sun, but not quite so much heat.  Maybe we'll find some wine, too.


  1. Sounds like you had a great time. I'm glad your relatives are no longer JWs, although after being in several classeswith a former JW, I'm beginning to believe they're no weirder thn Mormons. They at least can attend services and join whatever congregation they ant without regard to where they live. on the other hand, the anti-holiday thing makes children suffer. I guess both faits are just plain weird.

    In my anthropology class we got into genealogy a bit. Andy is your first cousin. His daughter is your first-cousin-once-removed. Were you to have a child, or since you don't, Arran and Zane are Andy's daughter's second cousins. Andy's daughter' baby will be your first cousin twice-removed and Zane and Arron's second-cousin-once removed. One can have first cousins five times removed (depending upon the interval between generations) but just probably doesn't know them.

    I have exactly seventeen first cousins on my mom's side and won't have more, as my mom and her twin, at almost 47, are the youngest, and [TMI] her twin is snipped, as is she, so there will be no more cousins on that side.

    I'd lost count on my dad's side, so I'm right now doing a mental head count. I have exactly fifty-three living cousins on that side of the family. Counting my brother and me (I didn't count Christopher and Matthew), that gives my grandparents fifty-five grandchildren. I don't think my grandfather even knows all of our names. He knows mine, though, as I'm the one he hates with thepassion that lions would hate tigers if placed in the same enclosure. my grandmother knows all our names, birthdays, and ages. Iknow that the youngest three siblings on dad's side are stopping at two babies each. I doubt there'll be more, but a menopause baby isn't out of the question for one of my aunts.

    Have you heard that line that Scientologists exist solely to make JW's and mormons appear more normal?

    1. I only have one cousin on my mom's side... and perhaps a few "step-cousins", if there is such a thing. She came to my wedding in 2002. That was the first time I'd seen her in years and the last time I've seen her since.

      The whole Scientology thing is another ball of wax... and totally does make Mormons and JWs look normal.


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