Where I Come From - Summer Adventures

Anyone can blog about their parents.  And I have.  Well, maybe not my dad, but maybe I have.  After blogging for several years I am pretty sure I have blogged about him.  If not, that can be part two.

This picture is of my step-mom.  She has been my step-mom since I was around four years old, and since I can't remember much prior to that other than sitting in a crib and watching a black and white TV when I was two or three, that means that I don't actually know a world without her. I wouldn't want to, either.  She is wonderful and funny and entertaining. 

When I was growing up I used to spend all of my summers in Utah with my dad, step-mom, two step-sisters and a half-sister.  That makes me an only child, a middle child, or an oldest child depending on who is in the room.  It is way easier to say I have three sisters.  So we shall leave it at that.  Summers were wonderful growing up.  In fact, I highly recommend figuring out a way to send your kids away for the summer to semi-rural places with gardens and orchards and fields to explore.  I keep trying to talk one of my sisters into taking my kids for the summer, but amazingly she hasn't jumped at the chance.  I am not sure what is wrong with her. 

So even though I am not genetically descended from my step-mom, nurture has certainly kicked in over the years and I find myself channeling her in various ways.  For example...

 - When we were growing up it was almost certain that if company was coming to stay with us, she would spend the week before remodeling something.  I find myself in the middle of remodeling/organizing/painting and I am a couple of weeks away from people coming to stay with us. 

 - I am totally into gardening and am horrified at how much for granted I took the strawberry patches, raspberry bushes, beans, corn, etc. that grew in the garden when I was growing up.  She sent us out to pick stuff, but I always got there too late to help plant.  She has a green thumb.  I have a...murky colored thumb that wants to turn green.

- She made going through a drive-thru at McDonald's an event.  Seriously!  We would stop on the way to Holden, Utah, or on the way to Girls' Camp, or on the way to an activity...and it was always so exciting.  Okay, so we part ways here since I won't set foot in a McDonald's, but I make going through a drive-thru at Kneaders an event.

- She's a putterer and is constantly doing things.  I don't think she sat down very much while we were growing up and she certainly doesn't at Sunday Dinners now.  And she talked to herself sometimes about what she needed to do.  I'm kind of the same way - driving my husband and kids crazy with my to do lists that they get to follow.  My step-mom had a white board that listed all of our daily chores.  I swear she got up at 5am to create that list.  It was really elaborate.  I think we had to clean ever corner of the house daily.  That's how my mind remembers it, anyway.  

 - She never cared about how much tv we watched and we all turned out fine.  In fact, we all graduated from college and two of my sisters even have masters degrees.  We all have excellent grammar (unless we choose not to).  I haven't really put a limit on my childrens' tv watching habits and everyone always tells me that they communicate like adults and have an extensive vocabulary.  So there ya go.

My favorite conversation recently with my step-mom was after reading an article by my sister about summers growing up.  I said to her, "We really wandered all over the place and could be gone from sunup to sundown.  Did you ever worry about us?"  

After thinking about it a few seconds she said with a smile, "I was only ever worried that you would come home."