20 Things Anyone With A BIG Extended Family Knows All Too Well

20 Things Anyone With A BIG Extended Family Knows All Too Well

Growing up with lots of relatives has its perks.
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1. Family gatherings are typically so loud you have a hard time hearing the person next to you

It is not uncommon to be asked to repeat yourself multiple times while talking to a relative. With so many different conversations going on, you tend to have a hard time hearing everything the person you are talking to is saying.

2. It is impossible to hold family parties on just one level of the house

With so many people, no matter how big a house is, there will be people on each floor. It would be an extremely awkward and a very tight squeeze to try and all stay on the same floor.

3. Everyone you know has some connection to a relative of yours

It seems like all of your friends somehow know one of your relatives. Whether they played baseball with your cousin a few years back or worked with your aunt, everyone seems to find a way to know a family member

4. You run into relatives running errands

It is totally normal to run into a family member while doing random errands, and although you see them all the time, the surprise of this time makes it even more exciting than normal

5. If you bring a friend to a family party you have to warn them about how crazy everyone gets

Due to the fact that everyone is so close, family parties tend to be a little crazy, so you have to warn anyone who is not used to how hectic things may get

6. If you don’t check the cousins group chat for 30 minutes you have about 100 new messages

With so many kids, group chats tend to blow up and every single conversation somehow makes you laugh, whether it is something Grandma said or just an embarrassing moment your cousins shared.

7. You find an excuse to get together for any holiday

It doesn't matter if it is Christmas or Labor Day, you know you'll be having a family event to celebrate

8. On your birthday, your phone never seems to stop ringing

With such a big family, on your special day everyone either texts or calls you, which means your phone is blowing up the whole day

9. You are totally used to Aunts and Uncles slipping up and calling you the wrong name on accident

It is so hard to keep track with so many kids, can you blame them?

10. Growing up, you would always get Hand Me Downs from your older cousins

For sure a perk if you're one of the youngest

11. At big events, such as graduation parties, half the guest list is just family

The number of cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents adds up so quickly

12. As the older kids started going to college, family parties felt so weird

Even though there are so many of you, even with one person missing, it feels weird

13. You always had a huge fan section at important sporting event

No one in your family would ever miss the chance to see you play a big game

14. You never have to worry where your pet will go on vacation, because you know a relative will take them

Typically, always the same family does takes the job

15. You have to work around many different dietary restrictions when feeding everyone

Whether its vegetarian, lactose intolerant or gluten free it is simply impossible to make one dish that everyone can eat

16. You have more inside jokes than you can even remember with all your cousins

It is hard not to when you all spend so much time together

17. At family parties growing up, there was always more than enough people to form two teams in whatever games you decided to play

From a driveway basketball game to a round of Capture the Flag, you never had to worry about having enough people to play

18. There always seems to be a line for the bathroom at family parties

It is a miracle if you head to the bathroom and are able to just walk right in

19. You either babysat your cousins or they babysat you

The older cousins were used to be the designated babysitter for younger cousins and the younger cousins always knew when mom said "babysitter" she was referring to one of your cousins

20. You look forward to holidays because that means celebrating with everyone

Nothing is better than a family party

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To My Person Who Never Left

Some weren't meant to stay, but you weren't meant to leave.
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I have met so many people throughout my life who were temporary. We had become close and made amazing memories in the past, but they were meant to stay there, in the past. I understand that not everyone is meant to stay with us forever, and it is totally normal for people to go their separate ways. Some of us grow apart, and that's okay. Sometimes, people are meant to leave.

But you never left.

When I first met you, I had no idea how much you would actually do for me. I thought of you as just another person in my life who was passing through, and eventually, we would drift apart. I am so incredibly lucky that I was wrong.

You have been there for me for so many important events in my life. You've celebrated with me through the good, stood by me through the bad, and supported me through the times I struggled. You have seen me at my best times and my worst. I love that I am able to call you at any hour, and I always know that your voice will be on the other end of the phone. You have always been my biggest cheerleader and I love you for that.

I also love that I am able to tell you anything and everything. I could text you whatever is on my mind, and you will respond--no matter how outrageous it is. You accept my weird habits and my strange thoughts. Most importantly, you accept me. You are able to handle my ridiculous personality, and I think that deserves an award.

The best part about our relationship is that distance doesn't change us. While I prefer not to, we are able to spend time away from each other and pick up right where we left off. It is so easy to lose connection with someone when there are miles between us, but that never happened to us. This just goes to show how close that we are, and how strong our friendship has grown.

It's hard to say how much you have changed me, because it is impossible to see where I would be without you in my life. But I can honestly say my life wouldn't be the same without you. I wouldn't have as many happy memories that I can look back on when I'm sad. I wouldn't have as many jokes I can think about when I'm having a bad day. I wouldn't have your encouraging words running through my head when I get overwhelmed.

And I wouldn't have a relationship that I valued so much.

I know that wherever my life takes me, or wherever your life takes you, we will never actually cut each other off. We have been through so much together, and I'm confident that nothing could break us at this point.

I am so beyond thankful that you, of all people, have stayed. I never knew how much you would mean to me, but I couldn't imagine my life without you.

Thank you for being not just my person, but my person who never left.

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Goals Are A Girl's Best Friend

Just call me a goal digger.

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We've all heard the saying, "Diamonds are a girl's best friend."

And don't get me wrong, I love shiny pieces of jewelry just as much as the next girl, trust me.

But, the older I get (and the harder college gets) I'm starting to realize how important it is to set goals for yourself. It may sound kind of silly that I'm just now realizing the importance of having goals in life, given that I'm going on 21 years old. But hear me out.

Obviously growing up people are constantly asking you about your goals. Maybe not in those exact words, but growing up we all hear, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" or "What are you doing after graduation?" or my personal favorite, "Where do you see yourself in five years?" And growing up we hear questions like that so often that by the time you're getting ready to graduate high school, you've trained yourself to give an almost robot-like response. I've noticed that my answers to those kinds of questions have become automatic and they never go off-script.

But what I also noticed, was that most of the time I was just saying those answers to satisfy whoever was asking, not because I believed them. To be honest, that realization scared me. I had to step back and ask myself if I had actually set any specific goals for myself. Yes, I had the ones that I'd told relatives and advisors and potential employers when they asked, but how real were they?

Then came the epiphany. I realized that what I had created were shallow goals. They were goals that I hadn't put much thought into. They were nice on the surface but had no depth to them. They were goals that I had convinced myself I wanted to achieve because of the number of times I'd repeated them but had no idea how to actually attain them, or if I even wanted to.

For example, people lately have been asking me what my plans are when I graduate with my bachelor's degree next Spring. And for months I've been answering "I'm going to law school," and the conversation usually stops there. It wasn't until someone asked me things like where, or why, that I realized I actually had no idea.

And so began the process of creating goals for myself that were thought-out, consistent, and answered every follow-up question they could possibly have.

As a revised version of my law school goal, after considering things for a while, I've figured out that I truly do want to go to law school. And after more soul searching, I realized it's because it's one of the most direct routes to helping people. At least, the most direct route that's realistic for me. And that's what I'm truly passionate about, helping people and using my voice for those who are constantly being talked over.

I see now more than ever in our society (and under our current administration) that there's a need for lawyers who want to help in the biggest way they can, to affect the most controversial issues right now.

After I reexamined this goal, I realized that there were probably a lot of other goals in my life that needed some TLC.

When we're asked about our goals, however the question may be phrased, nine times out of ten our answers are shallow. Not shallow in a vain or selfish way, but shallow as in they lack deeper thought and consideration. Or even worse, they have automatic, scripted, robotic explanations.

Take a look at the goals you've set for yourself and ask yourself all of the questions you can think of about the substance of them. Why do you have that goal? What exactly are you doing/going to do to achieve it? Why do you want to achieve it in the first place? Will you be satisfied once you've reached it?

If we keep letting ourselves and the generations after us set meaningless goals, that they only came up with to shut up their relatives, then we're going to end up with a world full of people who are unhappy with who they've become, the career path they started down, or the decisions they've made based on goals they never really wanted.

Encourage young people to set goals that are personal. That mean something to them. The only way to clean up the messes made in our world on a daily basis is to have people in positions that they actually want to be in. To have people who are actually passionate about what they're doing.

Diamonds are great, but take the time to get to know your goals too. Make your goals your best friends, at least until you're satisfied with them.

Diamonds may look nice, but your goals can change the world.

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