Your Story Blog Hop: Your Family | Pennies & Paper: Your Story Blog Hop: Your Family


Your Story Blog Hop: Your Family

Friday, May 30

It's time for a blog hop!
Livin' and Lovin' Blog Your Story Blog Hop
Earlier this week, Kriselle of Livin' and Lovin' and Hoda of JooJoo Azad posted a new blog hop geared towards getting to know bloggers better. For all the rules, click on the blog hop banner above. This week's theme is family, with the following questions as prompts: 

What is your family like? Do you have siblings? Were your parents married growing up? What do you consider your family?

family California

In my opinion, your relationship with your family is just like any other relationship you develop during your lifetime. I do owe a lot to my blood relatives: Without them, I wouldn't exist. But trust, love, and friendship have to be formed on an individual level, taking time to learn about one another as any strangers do.

Annoying as my family can be sometimes (I'm including myself in that statement), I'm very lucky in that I have family I care about and who cares about me.

In the above photo is my immediate family: Mom, Dad, Sam, and me. My parents both work in medical fields (physical therapy and prosthetics, respectively) and combined with my aunt, a nurse practitioner who often works with people who have disabilities, I think they helped me realize that I enjoy helping others. My parents (and again, aunt) have also shown me that I love to travel. The photo above was taken in Yosemite several years ago...with my family I've also made many trips to Vermont, New York City, Connecticut, D.C., and more!

My brother Sam is a year and ten months younger than me, so I don't really have any memories of the time before him. There is even a stretch from mid-December to mid-February when it looks like we're only a year different, which he doesn't usually let me forget. We have somewhat opposing personalities, but we tend to side against our parents on the same topics xD (Full disclosure: the only way to get him to smile in photographs, like in the one above, is to poke him immediately before the photo is taken!)

black and white cat

I also have a fuzzy little brother, Cedric (yes, named after the Harry Potter character--it's one of the few things my entire family likes!). He's definitely not a Hufflepuff. He doesn't like any of my friends with cats (although he likes the ones with dogs), and he's not friendly. He's also huge--he weighs 21 pounds, although the doctor said 16 would be normal weight for him. He's just so tall! I do love my rude and uncuddly cat. In the photo above, he woke up, glared at me, and stalked off as soon as I had dad take the picture.

family photo cousins

family photo cousins

My extended family is very important to me. I have seven cousins on my dad's side, and counting Sam and me there are nine. We're all very close in age; my oldest cousin is 26, I'm the third oldest at 21, and the youngest just turned 17. To top it off, my entire family lives in the same state, so I see everyone quite often! Holidays are a big thing in my family, and my cousins are all ridiculously talented so I see them at their sporting/music/other events.

family photo

This is a photo of most of my dad's side (plus in-laws) from two Easters ago. I know we may not have that big of a family, but everyone is so loud and excited and opinionated about everything that I think we each take up the space of two people :D Fun fact: My dad is one of nine, with three boys and six girls. Of the nine cousins there are three girls and six boys!

family photo

My mom's side is considerably smaller. It is made of my grandparents and my aunt (whom I am very close to). My aunt has taken me skiing in Vermont since just after I turned six, plus she lives very near Boston. My grandmother currently has Alzheimer's, which is tough on everyone and definitely frustrating for her. It's kind of like meeting a whole new person every time I see her.

My mom and aunt have a ton of aunts and uncles and cousins, so that side of the family is also quite large. I'm not as close with all of them, although I have known them my whole life.

Irish ancestor great-grandmother

Another large component of who I consider my family are my ancestors. In junior year of high school I did a genealogy project for my history class, and loved it so much I kept on going. My family is literally only Irish and Italian, as far back as I can tell. The "big family" vibe of both those cultures has definitely been passed down to today! Although I don't know much about personalities after my great-grandparents, all my research on the people and their hometowns has made me feel very connected to them. I've even made contact with some distant cousins--one of whom moved from Ireland to Australia! The above picture is of my paternal grandmother's mother on her wedding day in 1930. She was born in Limerick, Ireland, and apparently worked as a model. One of my biggest dreams is to go to Italy and Ireland and visit the tiny towns my family is from, and hopefully meet some relatives :)

There are hundreds of other stories and details I could give about the two branches of my family, but I'll leave it here. Who do you consider your family?
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  1. Aww I loved this post! You were so detailed in talking about your family, which I love. I always find it so bizarre to meet people who have less than 10 cousins on each parent's side because my parents grew up with 8 and 7 siblings and they all had at least 2-4 kids!

    And for your grandma, I am so sorry to hear about the Alzheimers. My grandma didn't have it, but she definitely had times where she couldn't remember me after certain periods of time. But on the other hand, that is so cool that you could track down your ancestors! I've tried and I can't find anything. I'm supposedly part Spanish from my dad's side a decent amount (like a quarter or something) but I haven't been able to track down my family from that side past my grandparents. Thank you for linking up with us, Julia!

    1. Thank you! I always thought I had a big family, but then I kept meeting people with upwards of 20 cousins haha. Whoops xD

      Anything that affects the brain is so sad and scary =/ Hopefully they'll find treatments for Alzheimers and related issues soon!

      I've found the best way to find ancestors is by talking to living relatives. I had a lot of luck emailing the churches where my grandparents were married and getting wedding certificates that included the names of the wedding party. And I did get a subscription to for a few months, but I convinced my parents to pay for it as part of my project haha.

  2. I found your blog by searching #YourStoryBlogHop and am now following your blog. I guess I come from a relatively small family. My paternal grandparents only had 2 children. My uncle had no children so there are no cousins on that side. On my mom's side, my grandparents had 5 kids. But there are only 8 grandkids (and that includes me, my 2 half-sisters, and my brother); so I had 4 cousins. I more than made up for it when I had my 7 kids! I can't wait to check out more of your blog!

    1. Endless thanks for following :) I'm now following you as well--can't wait to read about your family's adventures! I can't imagine have seven children, but it must be a ton of fun sometimes :)


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