I survived both sleeping at my mom's house (barely) and the, uh, first cousins once removed? Second cousins? idk, how does that work?
I never sleep well at my mom's. Her guest mattress is old and saggy, and the pillows are full of residual cigarette smoke, like all of her furniture. It's filthy and disgusting. And, of course, one of my migraine triggers! Isn't that great! So I'm trying to sleep in an uncomfortable bed with my face pressed into cigarette smoke, which makes my sinuses swell, makes me cough, and makes me produce so much phlegm that I almost choke myself on it.
Add into that the fact that her alarm system is broken and beeps LOUDLY every 4 hours, which means it went off at 1 am and 5 am. And I've suffered from insomnia since I was about 4. If I wake up, I can't get back to sleep. Sometimes it takes hours, sometimes I don't get back to sleep at all.
So I got maybe 5 hours of sleep Saturday night, and they weren't restful at all. Sunday I was fairly OK, and I slept pretty well at my aunt & uncle's (despite my cousin randomly shouting overnight; she's profoundly mentally retarded, and that's something she does.) Yesterday, though, I was really tired much of the day, and my neck started getting stiff like it does when I haven't gotten enough sleep. (Apparently that's unusual? Low sleep is another migraine trigger for me, yay.)
At the picnic, no one asked me to hold the baby, yay. My mom held him for a really long time. She wants grandbabies. Tough shit. My sister doesn't want kids, either (last I talked to her, anyway), and beside that, she doesn't have a boyfriend, and she's in theater, which means she's out at rehearsal, auditions, her friends' shows, her own shows, whatever most nights a week. (She wasn't at the picnic because she had a show, apparently.) On top of that, she barely remembers to feed herself and doesn't really eat properly if she does. So, no, no babies from my sister. Considering that we're both in our mid-30s, I don't see that happening, like, ever.
The toddler was kind of cute (she'll be 2 the end of this month). She's not very good at going down stairs by herself, and as the closest big person, I held her hand down the stairs a few times, and I tried playing catch, but she hasn't figured that out yet, apparently. My cousin's pretty good at the dad thing. (And, god, I remember when he was smaller than me. He's like 6'3" or something, and so's his brother the former Marine. Their baby brother (who's 15, god) is pushing 6'. The men in my family are TALL.)
It's weird how strong the genes are on that side. The three guys above look so much alike, it's shocking. The middle brother looks just like his dad, and the other two look a lot like each other. I'd seen the oldest, Nick, with his girlfriend and daughter & said hi, then a little bit later the rest of his family showed up. I saw Max (the youngest), and was like "Wait, I just saw Nick a second ago over there...damn, Max looks like his brother." Max apparently plays goalie on his HS soccer team and likes Barcelona (before they were cool, he says). I said, "Man, I don't know if I can like you anymore," and he asked if I was a Madrid fan. (I'm not, but Madrid has one of my favorite German players.)
is my uncle's backyard. On the right edge, you might be able to make out his hops trellis. He's growing 6 different kinds to make his homebrew. He let us sniff them, and they do have subtle differences in smell. One was fruity, another smelled like juniper (the Willamette variety, popular among the American craft brewers who think MORE HOPS!!! is how to make beer better; they're wrong).