Sunday, August 26, 2007

Sunday Seven: Seven Siblings

Today is the birthday of my sister, Carol. I thought it would be a good Sunday to finish this little tribute to the Seven Siblings that I got a start on a while back. I wish I had a larger selection of digital pics handy to choose from, but these are pretty illustrative ---

David the long-expected

(Above left, the little rascal turns to watch his older sister enter on our father's arm. And at the right he stands as my Best Man.)
He is the youngest of us. When Mama was expecting the seventh, Daddy and I hauled all the baby furniture out into the yard and painted it baby blue. I was thrilled as an 11-year-old to announce his birth. I read him Huck Finn when he was about four. I wonder if he got anything out of it. He brought Vicki into the fold and they presented us with Jessica, Katie, and Haley - the blessings keep flowing! And his barbecue is smoked to perfection!

Beth the adventurous

(Above left she is a wistful attendant to Joan the bride. And at the right Toddler Beth enjoys a holiday meal at Mama Shaw's)
I often misspeak and say "Beth!" when I call "Brannon". Maybe my slip has something to do with their shared derring-do. Brannon, my daughter, spent three months in Europe with a backpack, completely on her own with no set itinerary. As an adolescent, Beth took off on her own to visit our eldest sibling in Taiwan, then jogged over a few hundred air miles to visit Thailand while she was at it. Never mind there was a war on. And Beth is responsible for two wonderful additions to our family - "Amandarooni" and "Joshaway". Even her "beloved curmudgeon" adds a lot of smarts and bold dash of spice to the mix!

Debi the reader

(Little girls dressed up: "I feel pretty, oh so pretty!" at Joan's wedding.)
We nearly lost her before we knew her to pneumonia, so we've spoiled her rotten. I suspect that when we left her at the filling station that time, she had her head stuck in a book and didn't notice her family pulling away. When she finished the last book in the world she married an author and even decided she'd have to write a few herself. She and Gregg have also been most prolific in new family editions - Andrew, Matthew, Lisette, Benjamin, and Jonathan! Those five are more like siblings than cousins to my two!

Carol the rival

(Don't tell me you can't see the mischief in those eyes. Left and right at Joan's wedding, and center at Mama Shaw's table.)
She is closest to me in age and we FOUGHT in childhood. I remember, at about 9 or 10, threatening to kill her! As teens, college kids, and then young adults, we grew close. I'm not sure how I would have survived my last two years of college without her sympathetic ear... and her typing skills! And today is her birthday! Happy Birthady, Sis! And thanks for the two extra blessings you and RT presented us, "Stinkeroo" and "Skalawag"! "Stinkeroo" has added two more beautiful blessings, "Sweetstuff" and "Sunshine"!

Me the little big bro

(At left I am the somber alternative to the gleeful Carol. On the right the proud groomsman at Joan's wedding.)
As the first grandson on Daddy's side, they spoiled me rotten. As the little brother of two, they spoiled me rotten. As the big brother of four, I assumed the lead. And now as the sole Democrat, I take the heat. I may or may not be a blessing, but I surely am a blessee! And for all my faults, I gave my siblings a new sister, Sheila, a two fantastic neices: "Brannyroo" and "Lillyloo".

Joan the intellect

(Above right Joan enjoys her nutty uncles. And, of course, the beautiful bride.)
I worshiped at her feet. I bragged when her picture appeared in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution as the gorgeous and stylish Georgia Peach of the Week. She is the calm, brilliant center and the peacemaker. She and Jim, obviously mentally challenged, even loaned me their car for dates! And she and Jim gave us our first wonderful niece blessing, Lyn, and a fine nephew, Steve. And these two have presented us with six additional wonders - two rough and tumble guys (a middle-schooler and one who thinks he's a middleschooler) and four brilliant, determined sweethearts (a set of near-triplets and a gorgeous teen).

Jan the leader

(Big sister at grandmother's, as bride, and as Matron of Honor for Joan.)
Eldest and born to lead, she marshaled us to any task that was at hand. Though ready always to list all the pros and cons of every way to proceed, proceed she did and does. When I was a bewildered youth, she and Gil counseled me and even loaned me money and taught me to ski! She and Gil gave us Charmaine and Gil in quick succession -- what a blessing they have been! And now those two have done their part -- four rambunctious boys and 3, uh, (yep) rambunctious girls! We need to see them more often, Jan!

This post is so inadequate to express my love and admiration for my six siblings. They collectively make up one of the greatest blessings of my life. As anyone who reads our blogs knows, we have significant differences on many issues. But we share a wonderful heritage and a deep love. I am truly thankful this Sunday for these blessings.

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