Just Heather

Conversation with my little sister, Lexie, who is taking my girls for the weekend—for the first time ever, I might add:

Me: You aren’t planning to take the girls to the dress shop with you, are you?
Her: Yes.
Me: Do you want me to come with you?
Her: No, why?
Me: Have you met my kids?
Her: It’s only going to take a minute.
Me: Yes, a minute—with you stuck in one place surround by pins while my girls run wild around a bridal shop.
Her: They won’t be running wild. They’ll be sitting still behaving.
Me: uncontrollable laughing
Her: What?!
Me: more giggling wildly Have you met my children?
Her: They’ll be good—that’s how they get to eat McDonald’s.
Me: Okay, maybe you’re learning this mom thing.
Her: I had a plan! Don’t make me look like an idiot.

I completely devoured 2 books this weekend—neither of which was the book the entire rest of the country devoured. I’m on my library’s waiting list for that one. They’ve got 10 copies and I’m 19 on a list of 30 or 40. If I don’t have it by next weekend I’ll pilfer a copy from one of my sisters. (BTW, sis…if you still have the 5 books you borrowed from me last year, I’m really tired of watching the others tip over in their empty space.)

For now, I read the first two books in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (the third is also on reserve). Teenage chic lit, sure, but I actually enjoyed them. I think she very accurately captures the kinship and emotions of teenage girls. I wanted to read this series for two reasons.

  1. My sisters have been after me to read them for months. I sometimes feel so disconnected from them—being 7 and 11 years older, and hours away—that I tend to grasp at things we can share. Books and movies are a big one.
  2. I wanted to see the movie, though my sisters didn’t wait for me to catch up. I have this thing about reading the book first when a movie has been made from it. The catch is, if I have read the book I usually end up hating the movie. It never turns out quite like I pictured it in my head.

“I smile because you’re my sister. I laugh because there’s nothing you can do about it.” ~Unknown

Happy Birthday, sis!

I spent some more time with The Girlfriend this weekend. It was a little more relaxed since it was in the context of “my little sister’s friend” instead of “my brother’s girlfriend.” My sister is in the Bahamas this week for Spring Break with some friends. They stopped by my parents’ house Saturday night to spend the night, swap my dad cars, and have breakfast before driving to Florida. I didn’t find out until they were almost there that Leslie was one of the friends.

That made it better. There was no time to panic and work myself up into a “I-can’t-believe-this-is-what-I’m-wearing-when-my-brother’s-girlfriend-comes-over” frenzy. I was relaxed. Almost cool. The five of us spent a few hours just hanging out in the kitchen talking. I like her a lot. He seems to be more than semi-serious about her. If she can tolerate him through the summer—when he works hard and is at his finest—I just might get a sister-in-law someday.

How’s this for a Valentine?


This is the IM I received last night from my littlest sister. Never mind the caps and the total lack of punctuation. This is the best Valentine. It’s especially meaningful to me because ours is the relationship I worry about the most.

Hayley was 7 when I moved out. Seven. That’s the age my daughter is now. It’s so weird to think of how young she was when I still lived at home. She is obviously a completely different person now, and I struggle to know her. Being a teenager makes her especially difficult to know (and love).

Okay, I’m just kidding about that part (mostly). No, really. I love her to pieces, but I want to know her as Hayley—not just the cute kid sister I had before I left. I’m working on it. I truly think she’s working on it. Maybe we’re getting there. I don’t know. I guess the first time I think, “oh, I can’t wait to call and tell Hayley” I’ll know we’re there.

Well, that went well. /sarcasm

It started when they arrived 20 minutes late. Par for the course with my brother, though. The chicken I cooked because it’s all she’ll eat spent an hour and 40 minutes when it only required an hour and 20. I was afraid it might be slightly dry. Not so much. It was bleeding! Yuck.

So we ordered pizza instead. They wanted pepperoni and peppers. I ordered pepperoni and peppers, but I got green when they wanted jalapeno. Oops. We ate the pizza anyway and played Scrabble. A game which our 7 year old won. Okay, so I helped a little.

Once the food arrived, it was actually pretty nice. We relaxed, played Scrabble, and talked without me grilling The Girlfriend—which I was seriously worried I might do. I made my favorite dessert and everyone seemed to enjoy it, if the scraping of plates was any indication.

I sent them away with a container of my finally cooked chicken so they can marvel at my culinary skills during lunch tomorrow. It could have ended there. It could have been nice. Instead we spent 5 minutes discussing porn. I’m thinking recommending a movie to my brother and his new girlfriend was probably not the best idea.

My brother—bachelor playboy extraordinaire—is coming to dinner tonight. With his girlfriend. This will be the first girlfriend he has introduced to family since high school. Actually, this will be the first girlfriend he has ever introduced to me. Being only 3 years older—thus attending the same high school—I already knew them. I am unbelievably, stupidly nervous.

What if she doesn’t like me? What if I don’t like her? It could happen, you know. I don’t tend to like a lot of people. What if both of those things happen and my brother actually goes on to marry her? Then I’ll spend the rest of my life being jealous because she’s friends with my sister and I don’t get to have that kind of relationship with our sister-in-law.

Then my sister reminded me that we’re basically twins. She likes Leslie, so I’ll like Leslie. Leslie likes her, so there’s no way she won’t like me. Fine. Then the neurosis kicked in again. What if I really like her and I start thinking of her as a future sister-in-law? Then my stupid brother changes his mind about this whole girlfriend thing and dumps her? Where will that leave me?

All alone, 2 hours away, and jealous that my sister gets to spend time with our almost-sister-in-law, that’s where.