Well, the holiday is pretty much over. My aunt, uncle, and two cousins, aged 16 and 12 are going back to Arizona tomorrow.
My aunt L is my godmother, and has always been the "wilder" sister compared to my more stuffy and prissy mother. My aunt married well (twice) and always had beautiful antique furniture and nice cars.
I will never forget when she took me in her little brown Mercedes convertible to get my ears pierced for my 16th birthday. I had been begging my mother for years to get my ears pierced. She told me I was too irresponsible and would end up getting my ears infected, as well as losing all my earrings. (Side note, she was correct on the second prediction, I have always been horrible at keeping earrings) Nevertheless, my aunt had a bit of a rebellious side, and who was I to argue with her? She was young, pretty, and had that great convertible. Off to the mall we went, and in one minute I had two shiny fake aquamarines in my earlobes.
We went back to her house and everyone was there for dinner. I had very short hair at the time, and my mother noticed the earrings almost instantaneously. She got very upset with both of us, and yelled at my aunt. My turn was to come later in the car. She vowed that if my aunt ever had daughters, she would be sure to give her a similar turn.
Sure enough, my aunt had two daughters, and my mother says nothing when she takes them shopping and they try on waist-revealing skirts, and deep cut blouses. Mind you, my mother would NEVER have let my sister or me out of the house with those clothes on. My mother had a fit when my sister was in college and wore a middling V-neck sweater with slacks on a date.
But, they are leaving, and I am sad to see them go. The girls have so much energy with my son and love him so very much. He loves them too, and I wish they would move back here to California so that they could live closer to us. But, the real estate prices here are so out of control that it just doesn't make sense at this time. Perhaps we can all trek out there sometime around Christmas. I am spoiled and like to have all of my family around for the holidays. It just isn't the same without them.