My daughter, Zinnia has four sets of Grandparents, and one set of Great Grandparents spread out over three states. Add to that the fact that my husband’s brother’s family is in yet a different state, and my sister’s family is in another country and you quickly realize that for us to stay connected to family it requires a lot of travel. And fair amount of time on Skype.
Colorado. Illinois. Connecticut. Georgia. Texas. Germany. It actually kind of sucks.
We long for loud Sunday dinners with cousins running wildly through the kitchen while Grandma laughs and pretends to mind the mess. We dream of sleepovers where Nana lets the kids stay in their pajamas all weekend and Poppy encourages them to build something with his tools and scrap lumber. We wish for afternoons spent in Grandaddy’s “shop”, revving engines and having beers while Grammie catches us up on all the gossip. And we’d love to be able to head over to Grandpa’s house to help stack wood and eat Grandma’s vegetable stew. And any time spent hearing Memaw and Grandpop’s stories is always a treasure.
We’d love to join Steve’s brother for a hike with the kids or to just meet up for a spontaneous happy hour. And the idea of knitting with my sister, or having a picnic with her kids down by the creek, sounds like a great way to spend the afternoon.
If only we lived closer. If only they lived closer.
But in the right now, my house is full. Full of family (mine and my husband’s) gathered to celebrate my girl’s second birthday. This time spent in a crowded house sharing meals, chores, laughter and lots of “remember when…” stories is such a treat, for all of us. It’s loud and crazy and sometimes too close for comfort, but it’s our family and they’re here and we love it.
Oh, and those remember when stories are really hidden gems that will help Zinnia learn about Mama and Dada from the very people that know everything (well…ahem, mostly everything!) there is to know. And along the way, as our family gathers and grows we’ll be creating new “remember when” stories as well. These stories will become her story; the story of who she is in relation to her big spread-out-unconventionally-just-right-extended family.
Yep, these are the stories worth staying up late for.
About Lisa Coffee
I’m a crafting, gardening, homebirthing, Colorado Mama with a two year old named Zinnia and baby number two (affectionately known as Turnip) due this fall. As a family we strive to live close to the earth and her seasons and my best days are spent gardening the heck out of our quarter-acre backyard, making homemade meals and planning our family’s next big adventure. I’m especially fond of a good Mojito happy hour and I have a weakness for far-too-expensive jeans, but those luxuries sing of life before motherhood. These days, when I’m not stripping cloth diapers or cleaning up after another toddler shenanigan, I can be found barefoot in the garden, at my sewing table, or heading for the hills in the Big White Van. Join me daily, as I share snippets from the good life at littlecoffeebeans.com .