Thursday, December 4, 2008

A 'big' family

An interesting article in today's newspaper about 'large' families brought back a lot of memories. According to the writer, only 2% of today's families have 5 or more children. I wonder what that percentage was in the '50s and '60s when our five children were arriving. Several of our friends also had five children in the same time frame. Maybe sometime I can dig out the facts, but now I'm remembering ---

Five children in nine years meant a lot of fun, a lot of stress (but I was too busy to know that I was stressed), a lot of bottles and diapers, and a lot of groceries and cooking. I remember thinking, when our 5th child was born: "What if all five of our kids have five kids of their own? We'd be overrun with grandchildren !"

Somehow all five of our kids managed to grow up healthy and did very well in school, all going on to college or post-secondary education, and each one received academic scholarships, too ! And they have provided us with eleven wonderful and beautiful grandchildren.!

Our children were fortunate to have a large and loving extended family, two sets of grandparents, three great-grandmothers and a great-grandfather, oodles of cousins, aunts and uncles. Living in a fairly small town was the greatest blessing; where everybody knew everybody else, and cared about each other.

I served as Room mother for several grades, chaired many committees and served at PTA president. When the kids got older, I was in the Band Booster Club for years, since four of the kids played instruments in the high school band. Serving as Booster Club president meant many trips on the bus with the band when they participated in contests and parades in other towns, manning the concession booth at the football games, and all the things that parents are expected to do in support of their children's activities.

So what's the big deal about having five children? I will be interested to see if there are any responses to the article in today's newspaper.

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