For two nights during Christmas break, we had six adults and two children crammed into our little house. I know the family resemblance is hard to see, but these people are Abe's siblings. (They are all Abe's siblings, but they are not all of Abe's siblings: he has six more.) They are, from bottom right, moving clockwise: Abe (31), Quentin (26), Hillary (24), Briar (19), and Merritt (22). Hillary and Briar currently live with us, Soren and Liam's maiden "Hanties" who help with childcare, cooking, and cleaning. Quentin comes home, with a bundle of dirty laundry, for holidays and long weekends. And Merritt was just stopping by on her way to BYU-I when this picture was taken, but I imagine she'll be making holiday/weekend appearances as well.
We are a bit of a Skousen Depot, the halfway stop on the way to and from other places, the home central where the unmarried siblings crash for days, weeks, months, maybe even years.
People often ask me, with a horrified expression, "How can you stand to have so many in-laws around all the time?" And I wonder if there's something wrong with me, because the truth is, I generally don't mind it at all. In fact, I (usually) like it. I like having a home where people feel welcome. I like having the extra help around the house and with the kids. I like the added opportunities for human interaction. I like the flavor that extra people add to our household. And though they baffle me to the point of madness sometimes, I just plain love the members of that crazy other-family of mine.