Thursday, April 06, 2006

The 4 Step-Sisters

One of my sisters is staying with us here in Atlanta for 2 days while on a business trip and has instigated this post for me.

First of all, this is my dad's sense of humor to call his 4 daughters "step-sisters," based on this photo from 1962. But it's no joke: of his 8 kids, 4 of us are girls and here we are. From the top to the bottom, it's Susan (18), Boots (moi at 16), Nancy (15) and Ruth (5).

Susan Elisabeth was born May 25, 1943, and is now 62. Dad called her "Flusie Susie" (you had to know my dad!). She's the "Yes, Virginia, There is a God" bride from last October, marrying Rodger after 23 years as a single woman. She has a grown daughter and 3 gorgeous granddaughters, themselves almost grown. She started her own printing business years ago and is still quite the entrepreneur, living with Rodger in the Chicago area. Of the 5 redheads in the family (including Dad), she is the auburn variety.

Virginia Louise (a.k.a. Boots) was born June 13, 1945, and is now 60. HA--you already know that by now. Yes, that would be me or Dad's "Skinny Ginnie" back when no one knew I would one day be called that by everyone except my family. You already know about me: married 21 years to Bill; two grown children (Amy and Mark) and one adorable grandson, Nicholas. Domestic partner to Donica for 8 years. Retired. Living in the Atlanta area. The strawberry-blonde variety of redhead.

Nancy Rebecca was born on July 20, 1946, and is now 59, only 13 months my junior. This is her BIG 6-0 year and she's the one who's with us right now. Dad called her "Fancy Nancy" because, well, she is! She has 3 grown kids and 4 grandkids, with another on its way. She's presently single and lives in Holland, MI. She, like Susan, started her own business in the HUD housing market and is successful in training housing authorites countrywide on the regs from the Feds every time they are changed. A huge business for her! She is the only brunette of the 8 kids, taking after Mom.

Ruth Ann was born on August 22, 1956, and is now 49, awaiting her BIG 5-0 this year. Dad called her "Goofie Ruthie," which she really wasn't. But she was definitely the baby of the family, just Nicholas' age in the "step-sister" photo above. (Aww.) And she's the Synchronizing blogger I introduced you to back in February. She, too, has 2 grown kids (a girl and a boy), and is the English Academic Specialist at Michigan State University while her hubbie teaches 4th graders. Talk about a Soulmate. She is definitely my springboard and best friend for so much of who I am. And she's one of the 4 "dishwater blondes" who are neither brunettes nor redheads.

"The 4 step-sisters" is typed on the back of the March 1962 photo above, definitely in my dad's "writing." Wait till I show you the one he took of all 8 of us kids! (Another day!)


  1. Thanks for introducing your sisters to us. Always fun to learn more about one another. And evidently your dad had a sense of humor. That's good!

  2. Awwww....this is cool!

    (Psst..give Ruthie my number)

  3. I love the pet names your dad had for you all.

    Are we allowed to call you Bots? :)

  4. Tim: Yes, since Nancy was with us, it made sense to finally introduce HER after having already introduced Susan and Ruth previously. We didn't always see it but my dad definitely had a sense of humor!

    Jeff: Sometimes I forget that not everyone comes from a large family. It was so "normal" for me. I'm guessing Ruthie would say someone else already has her number but I know she'll be flattered nonetheless :)

    Mr. Fab: Those pet names (for the 4 boys as well) stuck with us our entire lives! He would rattle them off quickly one right after the other.

    You are NOT allowed to call me Bots...but Boots, YES. Maybe my next post will be about how I got that nickname right after I was born.


    Isn't there one of all eight of you taken around the same time? I think I've seen it in some of my mom's stash of photos...

    Remember the season in our family when G'pa/G'ma had 4 sons, 4 daughters, 4 granddaughters, 4 grandsons?

    Give a big hug to Aunt Nancy! :)

  6. Isn't that the house Aunt Nancy used to live in? oh, and one more thing--

    i love the shoes!

  7. Ginnie/Boots! What a great post! I smiled through the whole thing. What a bunch we are. I must say, seeing us all with smiles, reminds me that we are all truly happy, and learning more about ourselves, and what that means. This post feels powerful to me for that reason.

    Oh and, jkirlin, I AM flattered. Thank you, that made my day!

  8. One more thing. I was very proud of my outfit. It was a matching dress and sweater, and even at 5 1/2, I knew that was important. And the shoes were velvet I'll have you know. Now, the hair, that is debatable. This was a perm: heaven help me.

  9. Mrs. M/Shari: Oh yes--that's the photo I was thinking of at the end of my post. That's for another day! I had forgotten about the 4-4-4-4. Thanks for the reminder. Nancy is now gone but I'll give her a hug in my heart for you.

    Yes, that house used to be the church parsonage and later was purchased by Nancy and Roger when the church built elsewhere. It was HUGE. I wondered if anyone would notice the shoes :)

    Ruth: Of all the photos I could have chosen, I was very glad to end up with smiles on our faces. I asked Donica if she thought we looked alike (or like sisters) and she said "NO." Maybe only we girls see the similarities and mannerisms that make us look alike.

    I cannot believe you can remember that outfit from when you were 5-1/2! Truly you WERE into clothes and designing way back then. Unbelievable!

  10. I LOVE this post, mom! And as others have noted, I also like how happy everyone looks. Brought a smile to my face as well!

  11. Ah such a great post! I still can't believe how all of your sisters have grandkids etc. I think you are lucky to have so many siblings. I've only got one and I'm sure in the back of my parents minds is "hurry up already and have some grandkids" for us both.

  12. Wheeee! Oh I love this post! You ladies are gorgeous. Simply gorgeous!

    I love that you introduced your sisters to us, Ginnie.

  13. I am a dirty dishwater, too:) I used to hate it, but I have decided to let it grow natural, and I am starting to fall in love with it. That comes with tuning out what's all around me and just focusing on myself and what's best for me. I think you all looked fabulous back then, but you have all grown more beautiful with age- just like my mother says we do!

  14. Amy: Awww. Thanks. Yes, it was nice to find pics with us all smiling :)

    ET: Well, not all have g'kids yet. Ruth doesn't; neither of her kids are married. It'll happen for you when you're ready, so take your time.

    Dixie: Ohhhh. Thank you so much!!

    Rachel: And thank YOU for saying we've all grown "more beautiful" with age. That's what they usually say of the movie stars, so that feels like a compliment indeed :)

  15. Really nice meeting all your sisters!

  16. That was a very nice post Ginnie. I am very curious about your nickname "Boots". Hope you post about that soon :-)

  17. Great introduction I read with interest and often smiling. Great photos also, I love to see them all smiling. Thanks for pointing me to Ruth's blog. A new place to visit :-)

  18. Clo: Thank you. I've been glad to have met YOURS as well :)

    CS: And thanks to you as well. My next post will be about "Boots." It's almost ready to publish :)

    KPK: Smiles do make a difference, don't they :) You'll love Ruth's blog. She's constantly inspiring me.

    Mei: Thanks :)

  19. Boots! :-)

    What a lovely picture! I can definitely see the family resemblance and I loved hearing your "sister stories".

  20. I can't imagine having that many brothers and sisters but boy would I have loved it. What a beautiful, talented family you have, Ginnie.

  21. Christina: Glad you can see the resemblance. You would definitely see the mannerisms if you were around us :)

    Lisa: Thanks so much. We didn't know any differently back then but I think we do appreciate having as many of us as we do!

  22. Four sisters but also four soul-sisters, I'm sure! :)

  23. Very nice, I enjoyed the then and now of it

  24. MP: Believe it or not, no. Because we're family, that's the Soul. But Ruth is my Soul sister apart from being family. Because Susan and Nancy are so busy with their businesses, I really don't have that much contact with them, sad to say :(

    Paul: Thanks and good to see you again!

  25. ***wishing I had a sister***


    Would you think about adopting me? *wink*

  26. You know, TO/Kim, in many ways, as I read your posts, you FEEL like my sister. I think we're both on the same wavelength, so you are already adopted!