This weekend, Carsyn and I went to Tennessee and to my Mom's in Marshall County to visit with the family. Right around lunchtime when I was trying to get my mini-me to gather up her things so that we could get on the road and head home, all she would say is, "Mommy! I want to stay for just five more minutes to play with my cousins!" Needless to say, I gave her way more than five minutes. They were all having so much fun, I just couldn't pull her away.

On the quiet ride home (she fell asleep before I even pulled out of the gas station, ha!), I started to remember all of the fun times growing up in Milan with all of my cousins. That's when I realized... "Cousins are our first real friends."

Now, I know what some of you are thinking, "Ummm, hello? What about our brothers and sisters?" Well, let's be honest. There's no getting rid of your siblings. Either you are nice to them and play accordingly, or your Mom will flick you in the forehead, ha! Your cousins are a little different. You can easily avoid them at family gatherings and not have to interact with them in between those events. But, most of us don't do that. (Unless you have a Cousin Eddie, then, well... we get it, ha!) Some of my best memories of being a kid are playing with my cousins at my great-grandparents house. And, even thou I moved to Kentucky in the fourth grade, when we see each other, it's as if we never moved away.

Carsyn and cousin Tyler

I'm so thankful that Carsyn lives close enough to both sides of her family that she can grow up and make memories with her cousins. Even thou it was reaaaaally loud most of the weekend, seeing those three girls dressed up like Tinkerbell and her fairy friends, running though my Mom's house yelling, "Look at me flying... I'm a pretty, pretty fairy!", made the ringing eardrums totally worth it! Even my 14 year-old twin nephews were even having fun watching the girls, which we all know is just short of a miracle, ha!

So, to my cousins, I hope you know this, but... I love y'all and am so blessed to have you in my life. Oh, and, you're not getting rid of me anytime soon!