Some find the days at sea boring. I find them to be enjoyable, relaxing, and surprisingly, thought provoking.
It is no secret that my sister and I have a close relationship. We are grateful to our parents for having the foresight and setting the example of how to bring our two families together as if they were one. We have been told that our extended family is “mixed together like a bowl of spaghetti”. It is something of which we are proud and from which we reap many benefits. One of which being that our children, though first cousins, have always related to each other more like siblings.
For the past few years Alicia’s and our children have spent New Years together. They continue to do so with families of their own and yet another generation of our parent’s offspring is being raised as if they were siblings and the bowl of spaghetti gets even larger. The group, with the addition of Sam and Theo this year, is currently together in Palo Alto.
Our family tree would show Alicia’s son, Jeremy and his wife Laura as parents to Melanie and Jenna; Alicia’s daughter, Tracy and her husband Marc as parents to Benjamin and Theo; Marcee and her husband Jon are the parents of Rosie and Sam; and Amy is the grand “Ahme” to them all.
How much fun it has been to receive the pictures of Sam and Theo together, of Rosie meeting Theo and of Melanie, Jenna and Benjamin meeting Sam. We get reports that Rosie is spending time with Benjamin and that she still idolizes and copies the actions of Jenna and Melanie. We have heard that Sam is getting to ride on the shoulders of Jeremy. We assume that Marc has had his infamous cookie making sessions with all the older ones.
My father always said that family was the most important thing in life and that having everyone together topped the list. I received an email from my sister this morning:
“Stephen and I were just talking about how amazing it is and fabulous that your kids schlepped all the way across country. I skyped with mine for a minute. They had rain on the drive up from San Diego and Melanie said they saw four or five rainbows, but that they didn't find the pot of gold. I told her that their all being together was the pot of gold and her parents seemed to agree. Blessed is right. It's quite remarkable.”
As this year nears the end, for our family 2012 has indeed been a one in which we have grown in number and for which we indeed feel blessed.