frances in the city


brother and seesters
October 5, 2009, 11:24 am
Filed under: Family

Oh Monday.

Did you know that this particular Monday is the 21st anniversary of my sister Caroline’s birth? It’s true. 21 years ago today, my Grandma Mac got her first granddaughter, my brother Gordon got his first sister, and my parents got their first daughter. That’s a pretty magical October 5. If only we could all be together to celebrate together. I have fond memories of Caroline’s birthdays. For a couple of years, she picked funnel cakes as her birthday cake. Mom deep fried that batter and we had a carnival in the kitchen. What a great idea. When she turned 18, Caroline’s friends went together to buy her a hedgehog named Oscar, who ended up being very senile and cranky but fun to look at.

In honor of C-line’s birthday, I’m going to share 3 short(ish) sibling stories.

  1. I don’t remember exactly how old we were, but at some point, Caroline started making Anne and I address her as “Princess Caroline” when we had a question. Since she was the oldest, we often went to her for final approval on crucial matters such as if we could borrow a specific book. In this situation, she insisted that we preface our request with “Princess Caroline, you are so beautiful. Thank you for blessing the world with your presence. May I…”
    It was ridiculous. She did it just because it made us mad, not because she really thought of herself as a princess. I remember getting really frustrated because she wouldn’t listen to me if I hadn’t addressed her properly.
    Final note on the matter: occasionally she still insists.
  2. We used to play Little House on the Prairie ALL the time when we were younger. And since we were heavily influenced by the little public television we watched, we tended to gravitate towards the plot-lines of the 1970s reruns we watched instead of the books we read. We had a strong visual connection I guess. Anyway, since Caroline was the oldest, she was Mary. I was Laura and Anne was Carrie. We all had our little dresses and bonnets and were freaking adorable. I don’t know what we would have done if we had another sister, or one less sister. The scenario just would not have worked. We had a lot of material to reenact, what with the Ingalls’ barn burning down, Mary’s blindness, their woes in the one-room school house, and Carrie falling down the hill every time in the opening credits. GOOD stuff. Ask my mom for pictures, if you get the chance.
  3. This is actually pretty recent (as in, this weekend), but my little sister Anne went to her senior homecoming on Saturday night. She looked lovely. My mom emailed me pictures. Thanks Mom! I think every brother is a little protective of his younger sister, but my brother Gordon takes his job very seriously. How seriously, you ask? 
    A-Homecoming 10-3-09 00006
    This serious.

    Apparently he really did need to clean his shotgun (he’d been shooting at a bachelor party that afternoon), but isn’t that just mildly convenient that Gordon’s gun maintenance overlaps with a boy picking up Anne for a date? Mighty convenient.

    A-Homecoming 10-3-09 00009

    That young man sure is good at masking his fear.

    Fortunately, Anne found the entire situation hysterical, which will save her money on therapy in the long run.

    I'm framing this one. No lie. It's going to happen.

    I'm framing this one. No lie. It's going to happen.

    Oh, how I wish Chicago was only a couple hours from home. Then I could have helped my beautiful little sister get ready and assisted my brother in intimidation…I don’t know how much help I’d really have been, but I would have LOVED to have tried.

    A-Homecoming 10-3-09 00015

    It's ok. You can say she's the prettiest one. I won't tell the other girls.

Happy Birthday, Caroline. I wish we could celebrate together! I’m in awe of your intelligence, wit, and genuine good nature. I can’t wait to see you for the holidays!

You’re the best big brother in the world Gordon. Thanks for looking out for Anne. And me. And 21 year old Caroline.

I miss you so much sweet Anne! You are a lovely lovely lady.

Do I need to close this by saying that I love my family? Probably not. I have the greatest, funniest siblings in the world.

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2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Gordon has a huge responsibility protecting his 3 gorgeous sisters and he had better keep that gun cleaned and ready. I’m sure he is up to it.

Comment by Grandma

This was fun. Thanks for the birthday blog! We need to have a Little House on the Prairie reunion. Maybe over Thanksgiving?
p.s. I got two pairs of earmuffs in the mail yesterday. My ears will never be cold again! Especially if I wear all of them at once! Thanks.

Comment by Caroline




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