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On September 10, Em was remembering how her big brother used to play with her and her sister:

[He] would swim with us on his back and let us jump from his shoulders into the water . . . He once brought home a magnet from inside a computer and showed us how it would gather up all of Tammy’s bottle caps.

(Have you ever seen how strong a hard drive magnet is? It's strong!)

Do you have siblings? Older or younger? (Or both?)

If you have siblings, what's a good memory of something you did with them in childhood? I remember sliding around with my sister, both of us on our stomachs on the hard crust of ice on top of the snow, pretending to be seals.


( 37 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 10th, 2014 07:48 pm (UTC)
Do you have siblings? Older or younger? (Or both?)

I have one brother, mostly four years younger than me. (From his birthday in August to mine in October, it's only three.) He is the only person I have ever danced to techno music with glowsticks with.
Sep. 10th, 2014 10:05 pm (UTC)
Now I desperately want to dance to techno music with glow sticks. I have the techno music, but no glow sticks.
Sep. 10th, 2014 08:17 pm (UTC)
My oldest sister attached a rope to the rafters in the barn above our house. We used to go up there and swing quite often.
Sep. 10th, 2014 10:04 pm (UTC)
Oooh, that sounds very fun!

when we lived briefly with my in-laws in England, there was a rope swing in the barn... at least, I think there was? I know there was another one over a patch of nettles--it was terrifying and exciting for the kids to swing on that one.
Sep. 10th, 2014 08:18 pm (UTC)
I love all the aspects of Em's family in Pen Pal. I love the various problems they have to face and how they're not easily solvable, but that they must learn to cope with them and work them out the best they can.

I have never seen a hard drive magnet. How cool.

I had an adopted brother and sister growing up and we were never close. (I was the adopted one.) I always thought I'd love to have a sister and be close to her.

About 14 years ago, I received a letter from the Tennessee Department of Children's Services informing me that I had a sister who was searching for me. A REAL sister.

I had too many awful things going on in my life at the time, so I said no. I didn't need life to be complicated with someone I didn't know. I was just 3 years out of leaving my husband and having a hard time.

So, I "adopted" sisters of my own over the years. Sometimes, it worked. Sometimes, it didn't.

Sometimes, I still consider calling the TDCS and finding out if my real sister is still searching.

All that to say, I spent most of my childhood alone, but I still have some fond memories of playing in the creek and playing make believe alone.
Sep. 10th, 2014 10:01 pm (UTC)
I have fond memories of playing make believe alone too.

And "adopting" sisters as you go along--that's beautiful. Sometimes it works, sometimes not .... like with real sisters.

Maybe your biological sister did similar.

One thing I know is that life isn't symmetrical, or rather, it's not like tennis--we don't get to bat a good thing right back at the person who gave it to us (or a bad thing, for that matter). So even though the time was never (or at least, has never yet been) right for you and your biological sister to connect, you were making sisters all along, and that love made flowers bloom, wherever you went.
(no subject) - queenoftheskies - Sep. 10th, 2014 10:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Sep. 10th, 2014 10:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
Sep. 10th, 2014 10:11 pm (UTC)
I was thinking about siblings the other night, and realizing that the eldest and the youngest are both dead, died within two months of each other, though on opposites of the country, one barely over forty, the other in her mid-sixties, though a great-grandmother.

I was thinking of her daughter (she was raped her first week in college, and discovered herself pregnant, so she came to live with us) and my brother as babies in the bathtub, playing, as I bathed them, a practiced babysitter at fifteen. They had so much fun together!

Edited at 2014-09-10 10:12 pm (UTC)
Sep. 10th, 2014 10:14 pm (UTC)
Bathtub play! Yes, I remember taking baths with my sister, too.

Making washcloth sharks swim through bubble canyons.

... And heartless of me to pass over the losses, the injury... I'm just feeling so terribly sad today, I latched on to the good part. But I salute the sorrow. I see it there...

Edited at 2014-09-10 10:15 pm (UTC)
(no subject) - sartorias - Sep. 10th, 2014 10:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Sep. 10th, 2014 10:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
Sep. 10th, 2014 11:54 pm (UTC)
My friend bought a neodymium magnet (the kind used in hard drives) once. I think they're the strongest permanent magnet known.
Sep. 11th, 2014 02:52 pm (UTC)
They really are *amazingly* strong.
(no subject) - yamamanama - Sep. 11th, 2014 03:39 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Sep. 11th, 2014 04:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - yamamanama - Sep. 11th, 2014 05:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
Sep. 11th, 2014 02:12 am (UTC)
I have two younger brothers. In the past, when the middle one and I were both children we've sometimes had very significant problems in getting along. But we had a lot of fun together too.

Here's something a remember really well. I had found a big box of old, used drumsticks sitting out on the curb for the trash on my way home from school. I brought them home for reasons I'm not really sure of. Some time after that, said brother and I cut holes out of some kid-plus-sized boxes so we could see out of them and get our arms out the sides. Then we split the drum sticks up between us, hid in the boxes, and threw them at each other. It's a good thing no one got a stick in the eye, but it was tons of fun!
Sep. 11th, 2014 02:51 pm (UTC)
That sounds **awesome**--how creative (and violent at the same time, hah! Kids :D)
Sep. 11th, 2014 02:34 am (UTC)
I have one brother who is 2 years and nine months older than I am. We didn't entirely get along. (Which is to say, I'm still a mite peeved at him for trying to throw backward down the stairs even though that was many, many years ago. Luckily the door frame caught me. Heh.)

He did show me how to make airplanes with Lincoln Logs and float them around in the bathtub when I was little. They became my favorite bathtub toy, partly because airplanes were cool and partly because the Lincoln Logs made the water change colors in fascinating ways. :D

Edited at 2014-09-11 02:57 am (UTC)
Sep. 11th, 2014 02:50 pm (UTC)
Whoa! Lucky for him, too, that you didn't fall--yikes.

Lincoln Log airplanes in the tub: wonderful! They were pontoon planes, by their very nature.

I only remember green and brown Lincoln Logs, which I imagine would turn the water green and brown. But were there other colors?
(no subject) - serialbabbler - Sep. 11th, 2014 08:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Sep. 11th, 2014 08:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - serialbabbler - Sep. 11th, 2014 08:45 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Sep. 11th, 2014 08:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - serialbabbler - Sep. 11th, 2014 10:01 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Sep. 11th, 2014 10:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - serialbabbler - Sep. 11th, 2014 10:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Sep. 11th, 2014 11:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
Sep. 11th, 2014 08:28 am (UTC)
I have a sister, who is 1,5 years younger than me.

We are going to visit her this Saturday - that will be outing for 2 generations of siblings hopefully (if the healths hold out), as my son will borrow a bigger vehicle and drive my mother and her 2 surviving siblings (my mother is the baby of the family and she is 82) to island Saaremaa, where they will also visit their sisters grave and her widower.

BTW, on Tumbr you can see picture of my sister wearing the rabbit fur coat that was perfect for the seal-like sliding around on snow like you remember!
Sep. 11th, 2014 02:49 pm (UTC)
I hope everyone's health holds and that it can indeed be a multigenerational visit.

I love that picture of your sister, and the comment you make about how heavy coats were back then-- I can imagine. And at the same time, the picture is making me think of the lullaby: bye o baby bunting/daddy's gone a-hunting/to get a little rabbit skin / to wrap his baby bunting in.
(Deleted comment)
Sep. 11th, 2014 02:40 pm (UTC)
She must have been the older sister, yes? I am afraid I rather took advantage of my position as older sister, too--but I hope/think my sister has some good memories mixed in with the ones of me being unfair.
Sep. 11th, 2014 01:29 pm (UTC)
Oh, my wonderful, wonderful siblings! It's been too long - more than a year - since we've all been together. :(
And absolute floods of memories! I remember the club of the oldest ones, which I was only just allowed to be a member of, and our clubhouse along the side of the house, with the tunnel that was meant to go under the road to a neighbouring house, but we never got that far, and it became a secret under-the-floor storing place instead. And...oh stacks with the sister who was littler than I was, playing mermaids down at the beach. And all of us making pottery out of the clay in the back yard, and putting on shows, and... (sigh. goldengrove unleaving.)
Sep. 11th, 2014 02:39 pm (UTC)
I can *taste* those memories--how lovely. Thank you for sharing.

(I'd like to have been friends with you all--making pots and playing mermaids)

Goldengrove unleaving
Sep. 12th, 2014 01:31 pm (UTC)
Wow. Memories. I've been thinking since you posted this and am a bit frightened at how blank my mind seems to be. I need to chat with my family and get the juices flowing.

I am (was, rather) the middle of five children, all girls except the youngest.

Through the vagaries of life, I lived the most with my younger sister, so I'll share two memories concerning her:

Memory the First: When she was small, maybe three (so I was 5), she started trying to suck my toes, specifically the big ones. It drove me bonkers. For years, she would beg me to let her suck them. I hated it--just re-imagining it gives me the willies--but I know at least once or twice I let her do it so that she would leave me alone or do something I wanted her to do. I have no idea where that quirk of hers came from. And while the quirk was gross, I remember how cute and earnest she looked as she would supplicate me. :P

Memory the Second: I once spontaneously put some regular ol' socks on my hands and lay down between a bed and the wall and started singing, "Private Eyes" by Hall and Oates. It cracked her up so much, she would often beg me to do it. (link if you are not familiar with the song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anLfoy2XsFw)
Sep. 12th, 2014 01:49 pm (UTC)
Awww, I wonder if that first memory was some kind of a thing related to nursing/weaning? The way some kids suck their thumbs. That fact that it was your toes instead of her thumb is unusual, but I bet that's what it was.

And I KNOW THAT SONG, and I bet that was HILARIOUS.

And I know your younger sister's name, I think--it's the same as Em's, right?

And I believe I owe you some felicitations?
(no subject) - mnfaure - Sep. 12th, 2014 06:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
( 37 comments — Leave a comment )

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