Cousin  Christmas 

First family gathering of the season done and in the books.  Wish I had some pictures, but the third generation was a bit of a pain in the ass…you know, the generation that are constantly taking pictures of themselves with their tongues sticking out!  They didn’t want their pictures taken and were acting in a way that would have gotten our asses paddled with the belt when we were kids at Old Ma and Grampa Petersen’s.  I don’t recall my brother, my sister or myself getting in trouble or being paddled at Petersen Christmas, but I recall a few of my cousins being taken to the bedroom and getting their butts reddened by acting up.  Thankful tonight that our child behaved, at least in our presence. 

Was really looking forward to this gathing of cousins, it’s been years.  Old Ma’s last Christmas she said she wasn’t doing it.  2007 was the last Christmas the family gathered and the last family gathering that hasn’t been a funeral.  It was decided to be a Cousin Christmas, our parents could be invited if we chose, we figured they did Christmas for us for so many years that it was our turn to do all the work.  The sister was the only sibling to show, two of the brothers said they had no want to come, that they keep in touch with the family they want to and the one brother wasn’t welcome by his children.  

Only six cousins showed, seven didn’t.  Six live too far away to have been able to come on such short notice.  

It was actually a really great time.  We talked about Christmas’ when we were little, going caroling and freezing our toes. One of the cousins who was able to make it is a couple months older than me, there are three of us girls who are five months or so apart in age.  We visited about how we often had our yearly picture taken together, the year we were given matching sweatshirts and how we always had to sit at the kitchen table with our mothers…Old Ma assigned seats.  

I got my camera out to gather some memories and one of the next generation bellowed, “don’t take my picture”.  His mother only said, he really doesn’t like his picture taken.  Nothing was said to him.  I said okay and tried to get some shots of the adults at the kitchen table but that was next to impossible without half of each picture featuring the back of people’s heads.

I tried getting a shot of our foursome, we have four 14 year olds within nine months of one another.  The cousins daughter said, absolutely not.  I tried to get Leo and my two nieces, Leo and LuLu were agreeable…Sister Mary had a temper tantrum about my calling her Sister Mary and got down right nasty with me.  I’ve called her this for as long as I can remember.  She goes to Catholic school and with everything about her, she’s always made me think of Sister Mary Frances, a nun.  I wound up leaving the room, telling her she was acting like a real bitch and slamming the basement door.  Yes, I was taking the high road and acting like an adult we all see on the political shows on tv.  She made me so angry, her mouth just wouldn’t stop, I tried having a rational conversation with her but her mouth was so smart assed and all knowing and this is going to be my way or the highway.  I felt my blood pressure rise, you know the feeling of your eyeballs feeling like they are going to pop right out of their sockets.  

I’ve told her time and again how when I was a little girl the uncles on both sides of my family calling me Minnie or Minnie Mouse.  I absolutely hated it.  The more I told them not to call me that, that I didn’t like it, the more they seemed to call me that.  I never even noticed when they stopped.  Maybe 10 years or so ago, on rare occassions, my uncles started on occassion calling me Minnie and I have to say, I absolutely LOVE IT!  I’ve tried explaining that to Addison, and that I don’t know why, but the nickname just hit and seemed to fit…she just needs to ignore it, it’s not going to change.  If she quit throwing a fit each time I say it, maybe at some point it would go away and be forgotten just like Minnie was.  

The past number of years since the child has found her calling of being an amazing basketball and softball player, she can do no wrong.  Ask her mother, my sister, she will tell anyone within listening range that Addison rocks, she is the best athelete ever and can do no wrong.  She’s been allowed to act out and say what’s what and she gets away with it.  She thinks she can pull that with me and that’s just not going to happen.  I don’t play that game.  She had not been taught to resepecct her elders.  

Anyway, I’ve gotten off topic.

My Aunt Judy brought me some great family pictures of ancestors.  She also brought me an aebleskiver pan she’d found in her kitchen and didn’t use.  A beautiful cast iron version that I absolutely can’t wait to give a try at.  

However, I’m thinking if we do this again, we need to stick to the older generations!


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