There’s nothing better than actually feeling relaxed and happy after five days with family. It’s hard to sum it all up in a tidy package, so here are a few highlights and tidbits:
- Driving the van turned out to be fine. It handled similarly to our Subaru and Aunt Bird was next to me and she was able to tell me how to parallel park the beast.
- I found out that my uncle died over a year ago! NOW I feel bad about my post about him... I guess he’d developed lung cancer and died in prison. My aunts had visited him after their Mom died a few years ago. From what they said, he never expressed remorse, but he did say that prison was the best place for him because he couldn’t control his urges.
- Apparently the aunts have traditions for their sister weekends. They usually have tshirts made, give each other jewelry and buy a commemorative pin. The aunts’ shirts were pink and said, “Who needs a therapist, I have a SISTER”. For the cousins, navy shirts with “If you met my family, you would understand.”
- I always thought my Dad was the playful one (doing puzzles, playing card games, dancing), not my Mom. Being with her sisters showed me why she must have enjoyed him: our default option was to play together. I learned to play cribbage, we watched movies, and we obsessively put together puzzles (no one got to go to bed until the last piece was IN that 1000 piece puzzle, darn it).
- When we figured out how to play music through the house stereo system, OTRsis exclaimed, “We should have a dance party!” So we did. We moved back the table and chairs then did a conga line, had party lines with a soloist dancing down the middle (including a very impressive ‘worm’) and in general had a raucous, fun time.
- Every time one of my aunts said they missed my Mom, I asked what they missed about her. “She always made me think about God.” “How she lived her life.” “She read us the Narnia tales and she really made them come alive.”
- When everyone else left for a wine tasting tour, my cousin E and I took off separately for a day of wandering the town of Point Reyes as well as a dash out to the lighthouse. We found some great buys including To Go Ware. It was fun to have a two-person day in the midst of so much big family activity. We’d been the last to leave the rental house and had carefully locked up. At the end of the day, as we left the lighthouse (with an hour and a half drive to get back to the rental house), we came into cell phone range to find texts and voice mails that everyone else had returned and they were locked out! We freaked out, but were on little twisty roads (which I took as fast as possible). After twenty minutes of non-stop guilt and not enough consistent signal to call out, we got a text that two of the aunts had climbed up to the balcony (which hangs over the cliff...) and managed to get into the upstairs door. Phew!!! Dinner was ready when we got back and no one was TOO mad at us.
- At the end of the weekend, they were overjoyed to be able to pack up boxes of leftovers for me to take home. On previous sister weekends they’ve had to throw away food which was awful for them.
Who knows, if we move to Texas, I could be ‘host’ for the next one, too!