Day 9: #tbt edition. #feelingsentimental

#30daysofred: #tbt edition. #feelingsentimental

Today is Thursday, or as far as the internet is concerned, #TBT (Throwback Thursday). It's a day people post old, usually embarrassing, photos of themselves and/or their family members. It's always a lot of fun. This #TBT finds me feeling a little sentimental and reminiscing about (and mostly feeling thankful for) my childhood. 

I grew up with four brothers. I'm the oldest and the only girl in our family, well, besides my mom. That means, I've pretty much been a bonus mom since I was 3, and that I know more than the average girl does about football, wrestling, MMA, and sports movies. (Rudy! Rudy! Rudy!) At one point, I even collected football cards and traded with the boys. #truestory. 

Having four brothers also means that my sense of humor, all too often, trends towards the unladylike. 

But, truth be told, I wouldn't trade any of my brothers for a sister...and not just because I would have had to share my room and barbies. Sure, they were loud and rough and really, really gross and messy sometimes, but they were also really fun! And, if nothing else, they helped ensure that, should I ever marry, I won't have any delusions about men being other than they are in their natural habitat. ;)

Me, mom and our boys.

(Author's note: First...check out all those tube socks! Second...I used to BEG my oldest brother to borrow that FAB Def Leppard British Flag shirt...and really want one right now!)

Photobooth fun!

Life in a large family wasn't always singing songs in matching outfits our mom made herself, but we always managed to find the fun and made some pretty great memories along the way. In fact, one of the best things about our family was that it was big. I don't just mean that our individual family was big, though it was, I mean our extended family was big, too. 

There's a line in the movie "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" about how the main character has 30 first cousins...well, I had 28 first cousins, 14 on both mom's and dad's side. Dad was one of 6 boys and mom had 3 brothers and, for most of my childhood, the majority of us lived within 10-15 minutes of each other. That made for a lot of togetherness and a lot of memory-making opportunities.

Some of the fondest of those memories are:

  1. Dad's banana pancakes. They were a Saturday morning staple.
  2. Rainy day picnics on the living room floor. 
  3. Snuggling all together on the sofa to listen to Bill Cosby comedy albums, laughing our heads off. #wedontneednotv
  4. Playing charades when the power went out. I was always awesome, but my brother's could never guess my clues. My "Gone with the Wind" was EPIC! :P
  5. Shark Week with the brothers. It was an EVENT!
  6. Singing with dad while he played the guitar and hoping it would be my turn to do the percussion part on the Moody Blues' "Timothy Leary".
  7. Coffee and fresh bread at Ma Ma's house with the neighbors.
  8. Forcing my brothers to play dress-up because I had no sisters and they owed me.
  9. Playing Olympic Games on our Commodore 64. #cleanandjerk
  10. Decorating the Christmas Tree to Bing Crosby's Christmas album. #melekalikimaka
  11. The boys tormenting me while we decorated the Christmas tree by insisting on playing "Dominic the Donkey" over and over and over. #heehawheehawheehaw
  12. The smell of my grandparent's house.
  13. The smell of my grandfather's Zippo lighter.
  14. Our dog, Samantha. Except for the shedding thing, she was the most perfect dog, ever. She potty trained herself and was the sweetest thing on God's green earth.
  15. Homeroom with my friend Heather from 6th grade-12th grade. She pretty much knew every detail of my life for 6 years!
  16. Walking around the block "one more time" talking about everything and nothing with my friend, Stacy.
  17. Walking around the block at Ma & Pa's talking about everything and nothing with my cousin Jennifer.
  18. Singing and dancing in my dresser mirror."Knock on Wood" was a favorite.
  19. Reading my first real book on the ugly green tweed-looking sofa in our living room when I was home sick one day. It was "Little House on the Prairie."
  20. Doing splits, constantly, just because I could.
  21. Making up roller skating routines with my neighbor, Chantel, in our driveways. We even made up a song to skate to about  Charlie's Angels. "Charlie's Angels! We get after those crooks. Bang! Bang! Ugh!" 
  22. Countless sleepovers with my cousins, Jenny & Christy. #tootie
  23. Chocolate Divinity ice cream in melamine coffee mugs at Ma & Pa's...and fighting over who got the "little spoon."
  24. Carrot salad and cabbage ball at Mike Miley playground for our family picnics.
  25. Walking to and from school with the neighborhood kids every day.
  26. Thanksgiving dinner at the big, long "kids" table, laughing so hard dirty rice came out our noses.
  27. Spending weekends in Baton Rouge with Nanny and Stacey.
  28. Spending weekends at the Ponda (my great aunt's camp in Mississipi) and just feeling free.
  29. Walking around the Quarter with the family on a Sunday afternoon, doing nothing really, and it being the best day anyway.
  30. How much we laughed...most of the time at each other. ;) 
 Idyllic? Probably not. But, it was as good as we knew how to make it...and that was pretty darn good. #feelingblessed

Our boys, all growed up! #handsome