Category: Nephews & Nieces

The Shouting Makes Him Enfilade

| Detroit, MI, USA | Children, In-Laws, Nephews & Nieces, Siblings

(I am a retired Marine, and I have never lost the habit of using military terminology. My five-year-old nephew has taken his bath and is on the family room sofa, lying pressed up against the cushions so that he can’t be seen from the kitchen.)

Brother-In-Law: “Where’s [Nephew]?”

Me: “He’s in defilade.”

Nephew: *yelling* “No, I’m not! I’m in my underwear!”

Spilling The ‘How We Met’ Story

| Baltimore, MD, USA | Grandparents, Nephews & Nieces

(My mother tells the story of the first time she visited my father’s house when they were dating. It was the late 1950s, and his family’s house was almost a mansion compared to the working-class row-home she lived in. She came over for dinner with him, his mother and father (my grandparents), and his two nieces who were between four and five years old. The place-settings were china and matching silverware. My mother and father had iced tea to drink, and my grandmother poured milk for the two girls. Only a few minutes into the meal, one of the nieces knocked over her glass of milk. My grandmother removed the girl’s plate and cleaned the milk with a towel, then poured more milk.)

Grandmother: *to my niece* “Be careful now.”

(Only a minute or two later, the other niece spilled her milk. My grandmother cleaned up the mess again. My grandfather glared at the two girls.)

Grandmother: *sternly* “The next one who spills something will eat in the kitchen. Is that understood?”

Nieces: “Yes.”

(A few minutes after that, my mother picked up her glass of iced tea, but it slipped out of her hand because of the condensation. Her iced tea spilled all over the table. She was so embarrassed, she wanted the floor to open up and swallow her for such a first impression! My grandmother now had to take all the dishes off the table and remove the soaked tablecloth. My mother helped clean up and re-set the table.)

Mother: *afterward, sheepishly* “Should I go to the kitchen and finish my dinner?”

Grandmother: *after giving her a look* “You can stay here.”

(My parents have been married almost 58 years now.)

Not Big B(r)othered

| Newark, DE, USA | Nephews & Nieces

(My brother-in-law and his wife have just had their second son. Their older son is three years old and when my husband and I go to visit he’s running from his mother to his grandmother, who is holding the new baby.)

Me: “Hey, [Nephew], you’re a big brother now. Isn’t that cool?”

Nephew: “Yeah!”

Me: “You love your little brother?”

Nephew: *enthusiastically* “Yeah!”

Me: “Are you gonna help mama out with the new baby?”

Nephew: *loudly and enthusiastically* “No, I will not!”

The Playtime That Never Dies

| Austria | Children, Nephews & Nieces

Sister: “Be careful playing with your wooden sword!”

Nephew: “I’m not playing. I’m just making people dead.”

Kisses Are Non-Tranferrable

| Austria | Nephews & Nieces

Boyfriend: *is tickling [nephew]*

Nephew: “Tickle [My Name], too!”

Me: “No, he’s not allowed to do that.”

Nephew: “Yes, he is. Tickle her, too!”

Me: “No. If he does that, he doesn’t get any more kisses.”

Nephew: *to me* “That’s okay, you can have kisses from me.”

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