our uncle b.

Around here, we don't tend to define family solely based on who we are related by blood.
Family, to us, is also who you make it.
Sometimes even more so.
As I said sometime back, as soon as I realized that I could have this blog printed in book form, I wanted to be sure to make this blog a scrapbook of sorts that tells my boys what their life was like as kids...when the vividness of childhood fades from their lives, I want them to be able to look back and remember the special people and memories that formed who they grew to be.
Uncle B is one of those special people.

A little history first...Uncle B knew my parents before I was born...all I know is that he was a constant in my life. And we have always called him Uncle B. We only saw him a few times during the year but you could always count on him to show up for at least three specific times.
At Easter every year he showed up and did the best Easter Egg hunts...there were always hundreds of eggs hidden about to find...as I got older he would do one extravagant hunt just for me, as the oldest child, that would lead us all over the country side in search of the super egg!
At back to school time, he would show up to take us back to school shopping. Always much needed clothes and school supplies...exciting to all of us.
And then at Christmas...he would always show up in the nick of time to take us out to the mall...once there he would give us a little cash and let each of us go do some Christmas shopping on our own, something we wouldn't have gotten to do otherwise.

There were other adventures and fun memories too...to the zoo, the amusement parks, historical sites, etc. He sent me to camp two or three summers in a row and did the same for my sister years later. He bought me the car that I own now...at a time where I had nothing or no means to get one on my own. He bought me my first prom dress.
I have a lot of special memories of Uncle B growing up.
And believe me...it is NOT that he spent some money on us that sticks in my head...it is that he cared and continues to do so for no reason that he HAS to.

He has never once asked for anything but honesty and communication on my part.
He has never held anything he has done for me over my head. Ever.
It is baffling to me that he, someone who is not related by blood, has stuck around and done so much.

And now he is part of my boys lives. He comes down here to see us about every other weekend and spends the whole day. Spends nearly every moment he is here playing on the floor with Moses...tinkering with tools or going to the playgrounds...hardly doing anything that Moses doesn't want him to do. He doesn't shower Moses with gifts...he showers him with something far more important...his undivided attention.

When Moses naps...Uncle B is out working on my car, or some house project we have going on, or teaching Doug something about his car.
And then he'll buy us dinner...or go the store and get stuff to grill.
All the while with Moses in his shadow.

He has already made an impression on my boys. At bedtime every night we pray with Moses...every night we get to the part where we say "and Moses is thankful for..." and we let Moses fill in the blanks...his first thing is always "Untol B".

Even before mommy or daddy or anyone else...and I am OK with that.
Because I know he loves my boys, loves them like they were his own grandchildren...he invests his time and energy and love in them.
And Moses listing Uncle B first in his prayers shows me that he feels that love.

That doesn't mean that there aren't others who love my boys as much...
but it is special to me that MY uncle B is now OUR uncle B.
And I am excited to see all the fun memories that THEY will get to make with him.



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