I always loved having a big family. My Grandma, Mildred, was the daughter of Gertrude and Arthur and the middle child of their three kids. When the siblings grew up they all moved within a three mile radius of each other. Each of Grandma’s siblings had four kids and then some of their kids also had kids and the cycle is continuing on.
Fourth of July was the BEST. We would go to the Scarsdale Swim Club during the day then meet for a barbecue at Aunt Jeanne and Uncle Larry’s house where we would run around, use sparklers, and walk to the swim club for fire works. Fourth of July was also the day that I would beg my cousin, Donna, to do her yearly aerial. (As a grown up I now understand why it was a yearly aerial and a big undertaking because I now do my yearly back-walkover at summer camp.)
As we got older, and the grandparent siblings moved into New York City, our gatherings fizzled. While we had good intentions life got crazy and we ended up only seeing each other for weddings and funerals.
So here we are today celebrating the life of one of my cousins. Why, oh why, does it take losing someone to get people together?!
Yesterday we gathered together with all of my cousins favorite foods and reminisced. The kids, who had never met each other, ran around and played while the “grownups” reconnected. (Are we really grownups? I don’t feel like a grownup!)
I looked around the room in amazement. On one hand it was like no time had passed but at the same time my cousins were adults that I had to get to know again. Last time I saw these people in one room I was one of the kids running around. It was a group of people that are all bound together by our relatives, Gertrude and Arthur, whose children instilled the value of keeping our families close knit.
So to my generation of cousins, we’ve got to keep this going. And let’s make sure there is a lot of food.
(And maybe matching T-shirt’s. I really, really enjoy matching.)