Friday Photos, Part II: Feeling Thanksgiving-ish at Easter!

It’s practically written in stone that we gather as a family at Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. As Family Matriarch, my mom hosts these gatherings. With our gathering on Good Friday, we have now completed the cycle of getting together at mom and dad’s (new) condo. Can’t believe how time flies – seems like we were just wishing each other Merry Christmas!

I guess it”s a sign of getting older (!) but I’m just really feeling thankful for my awesome family. So without further ado, I’d like to introduce The Family and explain why I luv each of them:

Uncle Paul (mom's brother) and Aunt Sharon

Growing up, no one could make me weak with laughter like my Uncle Paul. Favourite memories include Uncle Paul blasting The Ramones and pounding the ceiling of the car (our first exposure to rock music, I think!) and just generally being a real card. I think if you played “Six Degrees of Separation,” Uncle Paul would end up being linked to every single person in K-W, thanks to his extensive sports and work connections.

Easygoing Sharon is always fun to chat with. We can discuss travel, books, shopping, working out – the conversation never lags. Sharon has a gift for searching out fabulous purchases at Winners (a talent I sorely lack) – whenever she is wearing a fantastic new article of clothing, 75% of the time, Sharon responds, “I found it at Winners!”; the other 25% of the time, she answers with “I made it!” – as someone who can’t sew on a button, let alone make an outfit, I am in awe.

Cousin Kate (R) with her BF, Pete (L)

Kate is our family’s intrepid international traveler. I so admire how she managed to balance both extended travel around the world AND complete her undergrad and Masters of Social Work degrees and now be gainfully employed in her field. Kate totally “gets” my style and it’s thanks to her awesome picks at Christmas that I have a number of fun pieces in my wardrobe. We will next vicariously travel with Kate to Egypt next winter – can’t wait for the photos and travel tales!

Pete has fit in so well with our family since day one: he easily discusses stocks with Erv, movies with Brad and I, books with my mom, the Toronto scene with Chris and Ana. Pete totally “gets” our tradition of making Christmas lists: from his obscure reading requests to his “tell me the answer to this question…”, we love that he and Kate are together.

Cousin Joel

Joel is just a gem of a person. He’s smart, funny, sporty, down-to-earth, easy to talk to…an all-around great guy. And he’s been like this since he was a baby (the advantage to having younger cousins: I remember them clearly from the day they were born!). Since Joel lives in Uptown like us, we bump into each other from time to time – always a pleasure. We also love Joel’s SpecialGF, Andrea…hopefully, she will be able to join us next get-together!

Youngest Cousin Alex

Alex has so many interests, he’s completely well-rounded: gifted academically, gifted athletically (soccer, esp), these talents are balanced out with his typical teenage interests in movies, computer games, his cellphone etc…the next step will be getting his license! And I swear Alex is three inches taller each time I see him…

Grandma! (Dad's mother)

I admire Grandma because has overcome more hardship in her life than I will ever know, and I am so glad that she is still going strong well into her late 80’s. From Grandma, I inherited my love of knitting and my tolerance of cooking (we both like baking more, I would say). I also chuckle because Grandma is quite adamant about still getting in her daily walk to the mall and back…I am like that, too!

My Brother The Doctor

Chris very good-naturedly puts up with a lot of ribbing about being a Ph D Doctor and not a Medical Doctor. He’s absolutely brilliant in his field of study; athletically gifted; a wonderful Dad, and I adore his sense of humour (do you notice a family genetic humourous trend here?). I’m just super lucky to have such a cool relationship with (6′ +) Little Bro.

SIL Ana, Baby C., (and Uncle B)

Ana is so gifted in so many ways, I don’t know where to start! She is my go-to source for any tech questions, from my blog to my blackberry to my camera. If she doesn’t know the answer, she’ll Google til she finds it for me. She is as equally adept at handling an electric drill as she is springform pan. She balances mommying, working, plus about 1000 other things and yes, has a sense of humour, too!

Baby C. is just about the best baby ever. Full of smiles and giggles, she loves to observe – who ever heard of a baby who is entertained without toys, even? A real cutie-pie.

Dad (G'pa); Mom (G'ma); Little E.

Mom and Dad you have seen/heard about/heard from often enough to know that I love ’em both to pieces and am so lucky to have parents who are also some of my bestest friends.

Little E. is just the apple of my eye (while Baby C. is the apple of my other eye, bien sur!). Allow me a little Aunti Bragging – at 3 years of age, Em already can easily count to 20 (English and French), print her name, tell you that her yellow jellybean tasted “bland,” and understands how to make jokes. Em just always makes my day and I’m so proud of the sweet little girl she is.

B and me!

Can you believe we’ll be married 15 years this summer? I cannot. B is the ying to my yang. We’ve always done things “our way,” and support each other’s goals and pursuits completely. B has fit in completely with my extended family since day one – he puts up with his share of teasing, too. Mom likes to say he married me for her strawberry pie and jam…they certainly helped drive the relationship in the right direction!

So that’s my beloved fam…each one just super great. And now two more shots of our Easter Get-To itself:

E. gets a Flying Carpet ride from Uncle B!

Celebrating three April Bdays with a divine torte!

Happily, the summer season brings around another tradition: the Uncles/Nephews golf outings. Then we all gather for conversation and bbq-ing thereafter. We’ll look forward to seeing each other BEFORE Thanksgiving – yippee!

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