Letter Writing Campaign

I think I’ve mentioned before that my dad was a bit of a “Surprise!” baby.  But just in case I didn’t…

My dad was a “Surprise!” baby.  He’s 10 years younger than his next older brother.  As a result, we didn’t have a lot in common with our cousins growing up.  Ok, that and the fact that we lived 800 miles away and visited infrequently and were…. MORMONS (shudder) may have had something to do with it.

At any rate, it is something I have always felt cheated of; the closeness of family.  As an adult and a mom, it’s become almost an obsession with me to try to stay close to my family.  I’ve tried to instigate a few things here and there, but if I were to be really honest about it I should say I have not given it the 100% all-out effort that I should if it’s as important to me as I say it is.  Today I decided to put the pedal to the floor and do something.

It’s frustrating trying to operate under such a strict budget because ideally I’d send little care packages every month to my brother & sister’s kids.  I love to think of them while I shop, especially if I want to buy girl clothes since I have no daughter of my own, but let’s be realistic.  I have not got the resources to do this constantly.  I do, however, have a drawer full of stationery in my desk (no, I’m not an office supply junkie, why do you ask?) and a bazillion different kinds of writing instruments (I said no!  Not a junkie!) and so I sit down to write.

Today it was to C who belongs to my sister, and J who belongs to my brother.  Next week a different sibling in each family will get a turn.   I’m probably picking a terrible time to start this, Em’s kids are well on their way to being teenagers who could probably care less; but here I go!

As I think of the effort I’m putting into this, a niggling little voice tells me not to forget Honey’s brother’s children, but I’m not sure this is the route I want to take with them.  Honey’s family is SO different from mine… And although I wouldn’t say we see each other regularly, it’s down right frequent when you consider how often I get to be with my siblings.  The nieces-in-law are all adorable and very accomplished not-so-little girls and we get along famously when we’re together.  At least, I feel like we do.  Still, I could use some inspiration.  What would you to if you were trying to get “in” with your 7-13 year old nieces?


In other news…

Yesterday I did my grocery shopping.  Sans children.  THANK YOU GOD FOR SCHOOLS!!!  When I was at one of the stores I frequent I nearly had a heart attack and died because I could’ve sworn on all that I hold dear that the woman in a scooter in front of me was my mom and I kept thinking, “If she were really here, why the crap would she be at the grocery store before coming to my house???”.  As I was in line to check out, I heard this adorable little tot singing in her little pixie voice a song by Selena Gomez that goes, “I, I love you like a love song baby…” and as I turned around to see what munchkin these notes were coming from, I SWEAR I saw Colin Powell in the line next to me!  Because, you know, my little Central Valley dustbowl town is a hotbed of political activity and golf courses where the mighty and powerful congregate in their off-hours.


Ok.  Time to perform my duties as afternoon carpool driver.

And don’t forget to leave me your teen-bonding suggestions!


One thought on “Letter Writing Campaign

  1. Do you accept insider trading secrets? Melanie showed me your latest blog post and I wanted to say, you rock! I love that you’d want to strengthen your relationship with my girls/your nieces. I validate that relations are great when we get together and that these are times I look forward to.

    The lack of convenience of such experiences stresses me a little at a time of personal anxiety as I think to reciprocate the similar effort that you described. However I want you to know that I genuinely enjoy the opportunities we do get.

    Your desire to reach out touched me as I acknowledge that everything isn’t always as rosy as it may appear. K for example just yesterday broke down feeling totally overwhelmed by the transition into jr. high and sharing her lack of sleep concerns. We tried to explain that learning Chinese and writing essays under time distress put many at their wit’s end.

    So to my fatherly suggestion: express your sincere interest to remain close and write (or call, email, etc if easier) about what helped you succeed at those transitional times in life.

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