Auntie's Brag Book

Graci is my niece.

Her mommy is my baby sister.

I adore them both.

Graci is the sweetest and most darling girl. She’s got a feisty temper, but when she cries it will melt your heart. She is always someone I can count on coming by to see me when I fly home for a visit. She is often there waiting at my parents house. No matter how late my flight comes in.

Once, when I answered the door, she was just crying her little heart out. She grabbed me and hugged me so tight, her body shaking from the weeping. She was dating a guy who, at one point, said he wanted to date other people. Which is fine. I mean they are young. (Graci is 22.) But the dumbshit doesn’t really know what that means. She had asked him if he wanted to hang out and do something that night and he said he had a date! A date! I just don’t get it. When you are dating other people, you don’t TELL them you can’t see them because you have a date with someone else! I know you guys are cute, but no one is THAT cute! It’s important to be sensitive. I don’t mean you have to lie. You can just say you have plans. You are busy. Whatever. But… I have a date???!!

So I took her shopping. Yeah, that’s what aunties do when their nieces are sad. Well this auntie takes you to the sex shop to buy something sexy. We picked out a few things and she went to try them on. At one point, I brought her out to the sales clerk and I said, “Look at this! Can you believe that the guy she’s dating said he can’t see her tonight because he has a date with someone else!” He said, “Who the hell does he have a date with… a supermodel?” I bought her the outfit. And I got her some really great high-heeled fuck-me shoes to go with it! I put one condition on the outfit. HE was never allowed to see it. She could show it off to any man in the world, except that one.Anyway, that was just one story of Graci. She went to culinary school in San Francisco. This was so hard on her, as she’d never been far from home. We are a very close family. My granddaughter (the first one to be born among us sisters) was born, Graci wasn’t there. This was very hard on her. When she came to visit on Thanksgiving, BrynLeigh was two months old. I will never forget the sight of Graci when she first saw that baby. She walked into the room, saw Bryn in her little seat and Graci just started to cry. Every emotion that she’d had while away from family was brought to the surface at the sight of that little face. Absolutely precious.

At any rate, Graci doesn’t just cry all the time. She’s vivacious and fun. She enters the room like a whirlwind. She’s impossible to ignore. And she has the greatest taste in clothes. Always unique and personalized... and she wears fun stuff like this:

Graci is now a very hard working, early rising girl who makes pastries at a bakery. I love going in to see her and she always gives me very special attention and something yummy to eat. She’s my little darling and I adore her!

I’ve always referred to Graci and my daughter as “the twins.” They are so much alike. It is their fault that I love Spongebob Squarepants. People had told me to watch the show and I tried. I just didn’t think it was funny. But one day, Erin and Graci started acting out scenarios between Spongebob and Patrick. Oh. My. God. I could have died laughing! And now when I watch the show, I think I actually think it’s THEM acting the parts! (But I don’t like Sandy… the Squirrel on the show. She bugs me. Wonder who could play her part and make me like it.) Erin and Graci are so much fun just to watch interact. I used to joke that we need to create a sitcom called “The Erin and Graci Show.” (This was several years ago, when Graci was a brunette. But when they laugh, you gotta laugh with them!)

So… this summer, Graci may be moving to Los Angeles to live with Erin. This would be so good for her. She does not belong in the middle (or the top, as we call it) of Utah. Not at all. She’s a California girl. That’s all there is to it. As homesick as she was, she had loved living in San Francisco and I know she’d love L.A. Plus, she and Erin would have so much fun! The twins, back together again! So if you see these girls in your wanderings, you’d just better get outta the way! Cause they haul ass to have fun! They love life and they are living every minute of it! Or, if you can keep up, you can join the parade! (That's Graci in the middle, and on the right is Becky Jo. The Becksta! She's another of my nieces, and just as worthy of adoration. I will write about her next time! The fella on the left is George, Becky's soulmate.)

You May Be Right ~ I May Be Crazy

You know what I love about my kids? Not one of them is insecure about who they are. None of them goes about seeking approval. There really is nothing more that I could want for my children. They have hard knocks, of course. And it kills me. You always wish you could protect your loved ones from having to go through any amount of pain. Which is an odd mechanism we have, because we all know that it’s during the painful times that we really grow. Still… no fun.

Weird though. We want to deprive our children of the very thing that will develop a strong character. Fortunately, for them, we cannot actually accomplish this. If we could, we would wind up doing the opposite; creating a very unstable and insecure person who has no purpose. No purpose at all. I can’t imagine a more horrible type of imprisonment than that.

All of this self-confidence sounds very well and good, right? Well oddly enough, and as attractive as it is, I’ve found that others sort of bristle at this trait. They get pissed off because you are not miserable like they are. When someone tries to get you to do something “their” way and you refuse, people cry out, “Good for you!” But when THEY are the ones trying to get “their” way, it’s a whole different cry they make! They say, “Oh… so you think you are perfect? You think that just because I tell you that the way you are is not okay that you don’t have to listen?” To this I say, “Why the fuck would you want to tell me that I’m not okay the way I am???” And then they say, “Well no one is perfect.” So, let me get this straight. No one is perfect. And you think that because I say I don’t have to become the way you think I should be that I’m saying I’m perfect? And you also think that it’s your job to help me accomplish this perfection?

Seriously. Someone explain to me why this is made out to be a rational way of thinking.

Here’s what I say:

Society does very much try to impress its wily ways on us, so those of us who are parents try desperately to teach our children to have a strong enough character not to succumb to those ways. Those of us who are people just living in a society, try to spend our time strengthening our own characters so that those around us are not what we choose to let define us.

And who is society? Well we all like to think that society is “those evil forces around us.” When, in fact, society is us. I think it would be nice if we could stop behaving like the evil forces and make the positive difference.