Friday, December 17, 2010

Home for the Holidaze

True or False: No Marriage of Convenience plot that includes the Christmas season would be complete without all of the RDD's extended family descending on his home for Christmas...

Answer: False. But it seems true.
In the world of Neels, no main character ever has to sleep on the couch (unless they are snowbound in a vicarage) or an inflatable mattress. In the van der Stevejinck world, someone very well may end up on the couch, or possibly the floor. When you come from a large family, you get very familiar with what we Hanna Bettys call "The Kicking Order". Yes, kicking. What it boils down to is the oldest child who comes home for a visit gets to kick a younger child out of their bed...the younger child has the option of kicking an even younger child out of their bed, etc, etc, etc...Some might call it cruel, but not us. Especially not me. As the second oldest child of a very large family, I was seldom called upon to give up my bed.

My theory is that this helps children learn adaptability...and helps solve tricky accommodation situations.
When I used to come home for the holidays way back in my college days, I generally shared a bed or couch with a baby sister. Baby sister Betty Keira.
If there was a kicking order in Neeldom, our poor Araminta would get shafted and evil sister Alice would get the good bed, age notwithstanding. Dang. I guess that makes me Alice.


  1. AAAAA! (Me screaming with delight!) I love this picture of you two. I had forgotten about it completely but I remember it clearly now. I finally got a break from reading that stupid elephant book to her.

  2. Love the photo! Thanks for sharing.

  3. Betty Barbara here--
    Cute photo of the two of you. But---
    There's The future Betty Debbie, smiling and hugging the future Betty Keira, while FBKeira is looking, what? I can't tell if she's bemused because this big person is in her bed, or being forced to pose with the book or just being shy...

  4. Betty Keira has never been forced to pose with a book in her life. Even at that young age. I'm pretty sure she climbed in with me in order for me to read to her - she was very persistant that way.

  5. My expression is one I have often seen on my daughter's face, 'You are an appendage. Now do my bidding.' Nice to know I was capable of it...