One More Mommy

Thoughts of a mom and her husband, son, daughter, pets, friends, job (or lack thereof), house, family, trying to be more ecologically aware...

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Hello Cousin

I'm an amateur geneologist - I love to chart my family tree and write down the names and birthdates of people that I'm related to. The further back I go, the more satisfaction I get from the names, though unfortunately I have only gotten about 150 years back.

Because I like to chart people, I know how they're all related. Specifically, I know the cousin rules. I know what first, second, and third cousins are. I know how once and twice removed works. When you think about relative names you've basically got parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, and cousins when you come into the world. They can be grand or great, but that's it. Later you get children, nieces, nephews, and from your cousins - more cousins.

I married into this Italian family that refers to everyone older than themselves as aunt and uncle - when they may not even be related to them! Being anal, as I am, this drives me crazy, especially since most of them are now confused on what their actual relationship is with people. It also drives me crazy when people refer to "my mother's cousin" because your mother's cousin? Is YOUR cousin, too. Most of my relatives, they're cousins. I call them 'Steve'. Or 'Gunnar'. Or 'Lars'. (Here's a quiz - guess which one of those names is NOT in my family tree!). You know, by their NAMES.


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