I grew up as the oldest in a large family of eight children. My dad was a food scientist and chemistry teacher while Mom stayed home to watch over the little ones. I was fortunate to be in a talented family that produced spelling bee champs, all-state musicians, a high school valedictorian, and several National Merit Scholars. Growing up we enjoyed running around with each other and making mischief on one another. (Ask me sometime about the Christmas we dumped the candy out of a brother's stocking and put coal in it instead).
Now that we've matured a little bit, gone off to school, and spread across four different states, we use technology to interact on a regular basis. Phone calls, email, blogs, and even wikis (editable webpages) are regularly used to keep in touch and share good times.
We enjoy getting together as often as we can, with big family events like Thanksgivings, baby blessings, and graduations likely to draw a crowd. We're especially looking forward to Thanksgiving 2007 when much of the family is planning on hiking the Grand Canyon together over a three- or four-day period.
I'm grateful for my parents and brothers and sisters. I'm glad to know we can be together forever.