Spent Labor Day visiting the cousins. It was 106 degrees and 35 percent humidity, so no one wanted to go outside. After we'd eaten ourselves into a food coma, there was little left to do but pull out recently discovered family home videos. Apparently, however, they'd already watched them all at Thanksgiving, when I was on my honeymoon. Nevertheless, we start into them again. Let me tell you- the inlaws are a good time. The videos were from the Christmases of 1989 and 1990- prime real estate. This puts my husband in kindergarten and first grade. Past the giant head of infancy and into the odd "mini-human" stage of life. Anyway. All the cousins are very recognizable, it's just watching their quirks in miniature. The gifts were creative- though we had bridged into a new decade, they are squarely in neon pants and bandannas with beads and the kicker- a denim visor with lace attached. The best part is, the aunts still feel the need to compliment the strange offerings. They still gasp and ooooh and try to get the kids excited 15 years after the fact. If you had dubbed out the aunts in 2007 and in 1990, there would have been dead silence because each kid just opened the gift and stared at it, in a strange "I'm not really sure WHAT this is, but I should definitely go give Aunt K a hug."
In contrast, my family has essentially none of our lives recorded on video. Within the last month a video surfaced that my grandfather had taken of me at nine months- extensive footage of me sitting on the front lawn eating grass. "MA-chelle, does that taste good?!?" The video then cuts out to me, a year or so later, trying to learn how to swim at my grandparents' house. Basically, this is them leaving me in the water (terrified) and then yelling from the side "Paddle with your arms!" "Close your mouth, you'll swallow less water!" while I scream bloody murder. Good times with the family.
Last but not least, a good friend of mine just sent a video she had taken of me midway through college. I'll let it speak for itself: