The Sleepy Eye Herald Dispatch
  • Like mother, like daughter

  • “Don’t think just because we are not at home that I?can’t find a corner to put you in if you misbehave,” my sister told our brood on Saturday before my wedding ceremony was about to begin.


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  • “Don’t think just because we are not at home that I?can’t find a corner to put you in if you misbehave,” my sister told our brood on Saturday before my wedding ceremony was about to begin.
    Finding a corner wasn’t the problem. Chasing down the two who were misbehaving was nearly impossible.
    My bridesmaids were my sister, my daughter, Maddie, and my sister’s three little girls who ranged in age from eight to two.
    Maddie and my sister’s daughter, Gretchen, are the same age and being female, that alone causes some issues. Spunky, strong-minded eight-year-old girls can make for an interesting weekend.
    After making a 300-mile trip to my house Friday from Iowa, with three little girls, my sister was a little edgy. She so graciously accepted the favor I asked of her to watch my children after the ceremony and for the night of the wedding. By Friday evening I think she was regretting accepting the challenge.
    According to my sister, the last two hours of the drive on Friday she listened to her four year old and two year old scream for the remainder of the trip.
    Once arriving at our house, the chaos intensified. Maddie and Gretchen see each other only a couple times a year due to the proximity of their homes. Once reunited they begin where they left off the last time, usually with an argument of who is the fastest, prettiest, smartest or oldest.
    The bickering, arguing and competing doesn’t end until they are physically separated by distance.
    There are times, however, when they are in agreement. This usually only happens when they have been reprimanded and we are ordering them apart. Remarkably, during those times, they morph into Thelma and Louise and make a fast break.
    My Mom commented at the reception how much Gretchen and Maddie remind her of me and my cousin, who happened to be sitting at the table at the time visiting with me.
    My former renegade cousin and I?looked at each other and grinned. “What was so bad about us?” we asked.
    “Whenever you two were together when you were Maddie and Gretchen’s age, it was the same thing. If you weren’t bickering with each other you were getting into trouble,” she said. “The only time you seemed to really see eye to eye is when you were outrunning one of us who was trying to catch you to separate you.”?
    Personally, I only remember two incidents. One involved the time we were rock picking and my cousin wouldn’t sit down on the trailer while we were driving through the field to go home. I yelled at her that she should listen to me because I was older (by one year) and she said I wasn’t her boss and she didn’t have to listen to me. So I pushed her off the trailer.
    Page 2 of 2 - Thankfully, no one got hurt, just my pride. When her dad, who was driving the tractor, noticed her rolling in the dirt, he slammed on the brakes. I knew I?was in for it.
    I rode the rest of the way back to the farm on the back of the trailer with my arms crossed, pouting. It really would have been so simple had she listened to me. Besides the time I?threw a snake at her because she wouldn’t touch it and I thought that was stupid, I really don’t remember any other times we weren’t the best of buds.
    “You were crazy as a child,”?my cousin said. “What kind of girl plays with snakes?”?
    “Girls that aren’t wimpy and scared of them,”?I answered.
    I guess some things never change.

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