I love to read other blogs... and funny enough, there are a few blogs I love to read and the people are all RELATED! Gabi, fun entertaining mom, Marta, seriously creative, Christie, thought provoking and great at writing (ok, she is related by marriage), and of course Travelin' Oma, loving travelin' momma.
I was thinking about this 'oh so amazing' family the other day and decided that I would find out what makes them tick.. I mean, they all seem so wonderfully NORMAL, and ABNORMALLY GREAT!
I decided to act in true Gabi form (she likes to conduct hard hitting interviews of intriguing bloggers) and interview her! (Since she probably won't interview herself.)
Here is what I was dying to know about her family, and here is what she said! Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions Gab. I think you and your family are AWESOME!
What on earth was happening in your family growing up that gave you guys such wonderful attitudes and allowed you to foster so much creativity? I mean, I am constantly blown away by the things the Marta finds to put on her blog and by her own wonderful creativity and craftiness, and you are so witty and talented and positive. What was your mother feeding you?? And can I get some for my kids? Wow, Lindsey. Clearly, we come off a lot better in cyberspace than in real life. Really, we are just boring and normal and not exciting at all in person. Remember--we only post the good stuff (and the bad if it is funny)...
Truthfully, my mom was very creative in her parenting. She really took her job as a mom seriously and was always planning little projects and parties and activities for us to do. For a few summers she did a whole summer school curriculum. We did all these learning activities together and she took us on field trips and wrote plays for us to perform for relatives. Looking back, I don't know how she did it! (Of course she did have a very helpful oldest daughter...)
Mom also left us alone sometimes and I think we got most creative then. (Usually creating trouble!)
She fed us lots of stuff with sugar and butter. Unfortunately it turned into a lifelong addiction for me...
You and your sisters seem so down to earth. What happened in your family growing up that you think attributes to that wonderful attitude? Well, we are all very short (except for lucky Christie who is not blood-related) so this is probably the reason we are so down to earth! Low center of gravity and all that. Also, I think you just cannot grow up in a big family--there are three boys and four girls--without a sense of humor and a general flexibility towards all kinds of people and situations.
Your mom and you girls seem so incredibly well read. Is this just a favorite past-time of your mom's that was handed down? Or did you all have a natural love of reading? My parents are both extreme bookworms...they have travelled all over the US and Europe and spend most of their time in bookstores! Dad collects first editions and other old books. Mom especially loves children's books. So, I guess it is just in our blood. I love to read and it is the only thing I can do quickly...so I do it a lot!
You and your mom and sister (and even sis-in-law) are so incredibly creative, and such excellent writers! How was this talent fostered and developed in your home growing up?These are the things my mother did NOT teach me: gardening, quilting, sewing, low-cal cooking, canning, bargain shopping, knitting, coupon clipping, cross-stitch, flower arranging, etc. Mom is not the traditional Relief Society homemaker. (And she would be first to admit it!)
Mom is creative in the sense that she writes beautifully, plans parties and gatherings to be fun and festive, teaches fabulous lessons at church, tells stories from her past to teach a "moral lesson" to her children. She has a great sense of fashion and style and creates lovely home environments wherever she lives. Also, she is a delicious cook (although she doesn't do it much anymore...) and has a beautiful singing voice. One of my favorite things to do with my mom and sisters is sit around the piano or guitars and sing the old family songs in two or three part harmony!
We never had "writing class" or anything growing up. I did always keep a journal and I know Marta did too. We DID talk a lot. Mom is a talker. Most of her children and her husband are REALLY good listeners. She likes DEEP TALKS and philosophical discussions. She is a great storyteller. Also my dad is a historian and writes people's stories for a living. So writing and having a lot to say are genetically inevitable in our family...(And Christie just came along already full of spunk, opinions and lots of laughter...so she fits right in, whether she likes it or not!)
Who was the first blogger in the family?I think Anna, my younger brother's wife, was the first. Until I met her, I had never even heard of blogging. Then my mom started and Marta. I have to admit, I did not get the whole thing at first. Like, why would anybody want to read about my life online? But I loved reading my mom's memories and was so inspired by Marta's beautiful photography and creative look at the world. I felt like I was getting to know my family in a whole new light. Still, I felt like I had nothing "important" to blog about myself.
Then, my sister, Amy (who blogs privately) and my sis-in-law, Christie started up these cute mommy blogs and I loved them! Finally, I got it...I could just blog about my everyday life--there was plenty of humorous material--and my faraway relatives would know about our daily routine.
My brother, Micah, also blogs. He is a genius lawyer and writes really deep legal posts. I love trying to read them and pretending I am intelligent.
Several of my cousins and my aunts blog too. It's fun checking them...because we are literally spread from coast to coast. This has been a great way to reconnect with loved ones, to share family stories and recipes and see cute photos of everybody's babies!
You all seem to have an amazing love for one another. How do you create such wonderful friendships within your family? The main secret is everyone lives in different states! It is so easy to get along this way...
Seriously...my Mom and Dad started it all by being really, truly in love with each other. They are the best of friends and this was the foundation of a very loving, happy home. We always did family home evening, family prayers, scripture time and just lots and lots of fun family field trips. We were constantly encouraged to be each others' best friends and see the good in each other.
I think the secret of happiness at home I learned from my mom is--family life may not always be fun in the moment--so have fun planning for things and then have fun remembering things! Then if you are in a dull or contentious moment, at least you have something fun to look forward to or some fun memory to laugh about.
I am lucky to have lots of happy family memories!
Thanks again Gab, for sharing all of your family secrets!