Thursday, April 10, 2014

Ode to Sibling Day '14

Well, I hope National Sibling Day didn't sneak up and find you without a gift for your closest of relatives.  All I know is that here it is after 10:00 pm and neither of my brothers have called to wish me Happy Sibling Day.  It's hard to believe.  You should always be extra nice to your brothers and sisters as you never know when you will need a body part and theirs are sure to be your closest match. 

I love this picture of my little brother's first night at home from the hospital.  The boy had a pair of lungs on him.  That's good, I suppose....I may need one of those one day, Lee.  Anyway, I don't think I liked the new living arrangement from the look on my face.  Little did I know on this night, that one day, in the not so distant future, the one on the left would hold me down, while the one in the middle would pummel me in the face with the blue, wooden handle of his corn popper.  What are siblings for, really, if not to create lifelong trust issues?       
Growing up between two boys, there wasn't much time to sit around and be prissy.  We also had mostly boys on our street, so unless you wanted to be a loner, you had to play what the boys were playing.  Every day, there was some type of ballgame going on in our yard.  It usually was whatever was in season.  We played whiffle ball, Country Jay, HORSE, two hand touch football, croquet, roller skated and skateboarded in the carport, and hit the tennis ball against the house.  I have to brag, too, that when captains starting picking teams in the neighborhood, I was always chosen pretty early on in the process.....I mean, for a little, skinny girl.   

We also fished in the pond behind our house, rode bicycles from morning to dusk, and my all time favorite.....placed pennies on the railroad track down the street, so that we could go back after the train had passed and collect our flattened coins.  Remember, this was the 70's when parents didn't mind if their kids played on the railroad tracks.  We developed something called, common sense, as a result.     

My mother still has a necklace that we all pitched in to buy her from the jewelry counter at TG&Y.  When I say jewelry counter, I mean it in the loosest way possible.  It was a lovely, golden chain or, at least, it was golden in 1978.  I'm not sure what color it is now, but it rests in my mother's jewelry box.  Anyway, its topaz colored plastic pendant bore the impression of a yellow wildflower in its center.  My older brother, Zane, was the main financer of our gifts...I don't know where he got all of his money.  I, the only girl, was always responsible for taking our stash of construction paper, white paste, and pinking shears and creating a lovely card....careful to pen a sentiment that expressed our gratitude, as a whole, to our mother.  Lee, well, he was the baby and you know how that goes.  He couldn't contribute much to our group gifts, but I guess when you're the baby, it doesn't matter....you're gonna be the favorite, regardless.

We were always given the chore of raking the yard and when we'd start fighting in the middle of it, we were all called into my daddy's office, where he'd turn us over his knee and give us a few whops on the derrière.  He operated on kind of the" if one goes down, they all go down" type of system.  Here we are on one of our yard raking days.  This is obviously a "before" picture with us smiling and all. 
Around the fourth of July when firework stands opened, I remember that we'd go over to the vacant lot next to our house and set up army men and build them little forts with sticks.  After we'd gotten it all set up, we'd throw firecrackers at each other's compounds, blowing them to smithereens. Of course, whoever caused the most destruction to the other team was the winner.  Again....1970's....."Sure, y'all take those explosives out and play, while we watch Lawrence Welk."  These are activities you could never do with a sister.  I may not have had anyone to play dress up or share clothes with, but I learned the exact moment that you had to release a firecracker to avoid losing a finger.  That is a skill that will serve you well your whole life.   

Living with boys, I also figured out, early on, that the more nonchalant you could be, while they're coming at you with a lizard, snake, or dead animal, the less time the offending creature would spend in your face.  Boys are into screaming and crying and if you don't give it to them, they lose interest pretty fast. 

My little brother and I shared a common relief when our older brother left for college.  For the first time in our lives, Lee and I felt like we might actually get all we wanted to eat as the bottomless goat had left home.  For years, I'd accompanied my mother to the grocery store in order to push the second cart.  The boy could put away some groceries as he is the root of my eating fast to this day.  "If you don't hurry, Zane will get it", the little voice in my head still taunts.

Anyway, here's one last picture of our little family headed to church.  Zane was rocking that leisure suit, and Lee, the baby, taking his rightful place on the throne of Daddy's arms.  Me and my Pageboy haircut, if you'll notice, are the only ones with an offering envelope.  Interesting.  I'm sure all the boxes were checked off on it as having read my Bible daily, studied my lesson, and worship attendance. 
I guess growing up with boys taught me a lot.  I'm quite adept at hitting pop flies to Carson.  I'm not afraid to bait a hook with a worm.  I can sharpen a knife with a wet rock.  I can catch crickets if the occasion ever calls for it.  I can put a chain back on a bike.  I'm good with tools and assembly.  I know the rules of football and all the NFL teams and their colors. Quite possibly the most advantageous result....my nose is forever numb to the stench of sweat.   

I hope they learned a thing or two from me, too.

Happy Sibling Day, boys. 

   

11 comments:

  1. Having grown up with 2 brothers (both younger so they may be writing a similar post about ME and how I used to paint their toenails and curl their hair against their will), I just LOVED this! AND…I think I had that dress you are wearing. But I had a pixie hair cut that turned into the Dorothy Hamil hair style. Great post!

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    1. Hahaha....I love that you painted their toenails, Karmen! I'm sure the dress came from JC Penney or Sears....and I don't know if you can tell in the picture, but it had a butterfly on the front of it. :)

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  2. I love this - I have two sons with a girlie in the middle!

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    1. Well, her placement between them will serve her well, Missy June! :)

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  3. Great post! Love the bottomless goat reference. My teenage son eats like that, too! :)

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    1. It's the only way to accurately describe the insatiable teenage boy appetite. My Carson isn't quite there yet, but he's working on it! The grocery bill will only go up from here.

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  4. I was hoping to see wonderful responses here from your brothers...but boys will always be boys!
    This was a great read..thank you!

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    1. Thank you! No, Tessie.....any responses I get from them about my blog come by way of phone or text, unfortunately. :)

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  5. Everytime I read your entries I see my future. I feel like we are so similar in many ways. Reading this post really made it more so. I too waited and even posted on FB about the anticipation of my brother calling to wish me a Happy Sibling's Day which never happened. Then...my dad and son are named Zane! Anyway, check out my blog and see if you think the same! fromthissideofthirty.blogspot.com

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  6. Lacy, I can't believe you have Zanes in your life, too!! Not a name you hear every day. Thanks so much for dropping by.....I'll definitely check out your blog!

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  7. I feel strongly about it and love learning more on this topic.Thanks for taking the time to discuss this.

    Independent Financial Adviser Weston-Super-Mare & Pension Adviser Bristol

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