I am typing this for a delayed posting, since I am off to Michigan for colors and sisters. Judy and I are in Chicago, Marie and Jennifer are in Detroit. We will meet in New Buffalo (not halfway, but a tradition) this weekend for our annual get together. We failed to merge last Autumn, so we set this weekend in stone last June, and woe be to she who gets the flu, or any other excuse. Judy is shaving it close, with her daughter's 13th birthday on Sunday. It is costing her a girlfriends-style party for Emma, with manicures and such. I would suspect that Emma will get a few bonus gifts as well, from her Aunties. The Joliat sisters are not to be denied. There is always the sister-in-law dilemna. We love both S-I-Ls, but this is a tradition. Marietta, Paul's wife, has 5 sisters herself, and they have get-togethers that do not reach across to my sister Marie.( married to her brother) She is really like a sister, since she has been a Joliat for 27 years, and Mom counted her as a daughter. But she does not have to like us, so we would have to behave. The sisters can get away with sniping and such- after all, what can you do, excommunicate yourself from the family? Mike's wife, Colleen is off this weekend to see her daughter Kate play soccer at U of Miami, so she would be out anyhow. She probably saw more of us than she dreamed of in her worst nightmare during Mike's surgical sojourn. In all likelihood, both women would probably find us tiresome. We tend to try to solve the problems of the world and of the family. We fail, and drink wine and eat too much. Once Mike came for the weekend, and we dragged him to Saugatuck to shop. He was a good sport, but I guess Paul has harassed him for a decade about being a "sister". Since his wife is away, and with the cardiac rehab, we extended an invite. Remembering our wretched excesses, and the gazillion stairs, second floor beds and bath- he demurred. I believe Paul's scorn is the real reason. Yes- I guess we ARE tiresome.
This year's caloric traps are chicken and shrimp salad a la Costco, with croissants and rolls, M & M peanuts, in homage to our Mom, molasses cookies and assorted breakfast breads. And wine, of course. It looks like we can justify a fire. We will eat all dinners out. One meal will be at Stray Dog. We will undertake a craft project involving beading, go to the outlet malls and buy nothing we need, and take as many pictures as we can cajole strangers (and waiters) into snapping. I am going to trick the girls into Stop 50 Wood Fired Pizza. They will thank me FOREVER. And Chris, the owner would make sure we were well photographed, perhaps with his woodfired s'mores. Yum.
I have made commemorative sweatshirts to honor the occasion- I will reveal them upon my return Sunday so as to suprise the girls. I made extras for the brothers, and I tried not to go too "chick." My son gave a thumbs up; that is a relief.
Next year maybe I will try to assemble a family weekend. There is a swell hotel at the end of the street, and we could all congregate with spouses. I think I will aim for September, and barring any emergency bypass surgeries, we could pull it off. Of course, that would be in addition to- not instead of- sisters' weekend. I will start contemplating the commemorative clothing now.
What do you do on Family weekends? Sisters' weekends? How do you balance the sister-sister- in- law situation? I know we have a great time, I just want to keep it fresh and fun. I will be back with pictures on Monday. I than you for your indulgence. I am just that excited.