Hope y’all are having a great week! I know, here in Bozeman, it’s finals week…so many of my friends are completing their long semester, while some are graduating. Regardless of where you are at, congratulations! Have an awesome Christmas break! I’m sure it is well deserved.
Anyways. I am very excited to tell you that my “dad & mom” post was a huge hit last week! Thank you to all that read it. If you didn’t get the chance, you can find it here. This week, I’m going to spread the love to my siblings, Sarah and Adam. You think my mom and dad and are the best of friends?? Then you have not met my little brother and sister. Is there a word or phrase for more than best friends? Essentially, they are my rock and my better halves. They are also incredibly wise for their young 24 years old (Sarah) and almost 22 years old (Adam). They are also really, really ridiculously good looking. (see above photo)
Growing up with siblings was (at times) tough. I’m sure many of you can relate to me when I write that we got along maybe 30% of the time. The rest of the time was either all three of us fighting and yelling, or two out of the three of us ganging up on the other. Most of the time it was Adam and Sarah ganging up on me, because I was the mean older sister. I will admit that I was a bully and could definitely hold my own, being bigger than them. I also knew how to yell and fight back, as well as rock the boat in order to start something. But…they knew how to tattle on me and be the “perfect” middle child and the “adorable” baby brother.
photo: Carolyn Potts
My sister and I had a very off and on friendship starting with our young years, all the way up through high school. Being that we were only two years apart, we fought all the time but also got along like best friends. We shared clothes (a good idea and an absolutely horrible idea), worked on homework together, and slept in the same room up until the day I left for college. My sister also had a habit of listening to mine and my mom’s arguments. In our house, we have a vent in the upstairs living room that goes directly to our childhood bedroom. Sarah loved to listen to mom and I fighting through the vent, waiting to hear what my newest punishment was going to be. Sarah and I were very close in high school, participating in band together and hanging out with a similar group of friends. We carpooled to school in the late Camille (our trusty Honda Passport) and blasted “Every Time We Touch”, by Cascada everywhere we went. That was the beginning of our blossoming friendship, which has lead up to today’s close relationship.
photo: Carolyn Potts
My mom likes to remind me that my favorite phrase to describe Adam was, “You’re SO ANNOYING!” She consistently reminded me by saying, “Michelle, you were annoying at that age too.” Sure I was mom. Sure I was. Brothers know how to pick on their sisters. They know what makes them tick, and how to poke at that on a daily basis. My name growing up was also “Michelle-a!” Anytime my brother yelled at me, he added the ‘a’ on the end for emphasis. But you know, my brother is also incredibly thoughtful and creative. When I left for college, my family began a new Christmas tradition called “Secret Shepherd”. We draw names around the first of January, for the following Christmas, using the entire year to come up with a creative, meaningful gift for that person. My brother has drawn my name quite a few times and ALWAYS finds the most creative gifts. The first year, he gave me a couple of wooden puzzles that your break apart and then try to put them back together like you found them. My brother, being so funny (and maybe having too much faith in me), threw away the instructions. I have yet to complete one of those puzzles. The next year that he got me was when I turned 21 years old. That was also the same year that The Avengers came to the theaters (which I was so excited for!). He gave me four beer glasses, with Thor, Captain America, Spider Man, and Hulk on them. I love them! The following year, he gave me a book of of 300 beers to try before I die (check it out here). And finally, the year my parents and I built up a tandem, he gifted me with a leather 6-pack holder that connects to the bike frame, as well as some floral spokey dokeys.
photo: Your’s truly
Since growing up, I have developed a friendship with my brother and sister. We send goofy videos to each other, unattractive snapchat photos (typically screenshot immediately), and are inseparable when they vacation in Bozeman. Any and all of my free time is generally given to them once they arrive. I also make it a priority to travel to Washington (where they both reside) at least once a year. My sister and I like to go on runs, drink coffee, go shopping at Pike Place Market, and discuss everything that is going on in our lives. I go to my sister for EVERYTHING. Any dilemma I’m in or funk or petty issue, she is always there to talk me through it, tell me to breathe, and pray for me. We talk for hours on end, whether it’s on the phone or when one of us is visiting the other. There is never a silent moment when we are together. My sister is also one of the most brilliant people I know. Her nursing stories keep me entertained and constantly blow my mind. How can someone remember so much?! She recently passed her exams to get her into the ICU unit at Swedish Medical Center. Talking on the phone, she was so worried about not passing her test…she did. And with flying colors (as usual)! I am quite happy and blessed to have a wicked smart nurse in the family.
photo: Carolyn Potts
My brother and I try to spend as much time riding our mountain bikes when I am in Seattle or when he comes to Bozeman. A couple of summers ago, he and I drove up to Bellingham and spent a few days riding bikes, eating junk food, watching Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and sitting by our hotel pool. It’s fun to have an adventure buddy that’s up for anything (except for hiking). My brother is one of the most determined and driven people that I know. Throughout his four years in college, Adam has volunteered for quite a few programs and has worked for the ROTC program at PLU. Next semester, he will be volunteering with YMCA for his internship, helping coach youth basketball teams. He had previous basketball experience by working with players in wheelchairs, participating in scrimmages and helping where he was needed. Adam is ALSO an operations sergeant major within ROTC, and will graduate in May as a 2nd Lieutenant, with a degree in Kinesiology. He is an excellent student (better than I ever was!) and is always focused on school and maintaining good grades. I cannot tell you how many times he has ignored my texts for days, because he is busy with school. His next move is working in the Army Signal Corps and I am so excited to see where this job and his well deserved degree take him!
I feel incredibly blessed to have such an amazing dad, mom, brother, and sister. I am also very happy that I can share this with you (and that you made it through this entire post). Thank you for reading and continuing to keep up with my blog! Have a great week and a half before Christmas. I hope you get all of your shopping done! If you need any help with some gift options, here’s my list that I’ve shared with a few friends. Hope it helps:
-socks (everyone LOVES socks)
-fun printed tights
-big, chunky earrings
-hammock (Grand Trunk makes some SUPER fun hammocks)
-ANYTHING Star Wars (Rogue 1 comes out this Friday!)
-themed coffee mugs
-books (Yes Please, Bossy Pants, Malcolm Gladwell books, etc.)
-home accessories (pillow cases, candles, dresser accessories, American Eagle has a new very cute line!)
title photo: Carolyn Potts