Saturday, September 29, 2007


It is a funny thing about cousins. They may go for years without making any contact with one another, but when they do get together, it is a real cause for celebration, and they find they really enjoy each other's company. There are often shared memories of family occasions in childhood, and of grandparents and aunts and uncles . There is the delight of discovering values and attributes and interests that they have in common, and the excitement of catching up on all the news and events of the intervening years. Cousins may not have seen or corresponded for a decade, but snippets of news may have reached them through other family members, and when they meet, they just seem to take up where they left off!

This is how it has been at Devon this week.

The Slaters celebrated their 10th Wedding Anniversary the day after they arrived. Bronte wanted to dress up, because she had missed the original wedding celebration!!

On Monday my niece Mandy Slater, her husband Dave and 6 year old Bronte arrived. It was Mandy's first visit for 25 years, although she has met up with most of the Christian-Bailey cousins on 2 or 3 occasions in that time. Bronte, was of course, delighted to spend time with her little cousins Teddy and Sienna. Even before the McRitchies moved to Norfolk Island last December, they lived in a different state to the Slaters, so there has been much excitement among the little ones.

Sarah and Emily meet Bronte for the first time, and they all get introduced to the youngest new cousin William. who had his half-birthday last week!!!

Then the next day, Thursday, Sarah and Emily arrived from New Zealand. Not only did they meet up with Bronte, Mandy and Dave for the first time, but there was also the joy of meeting the newest family member William.

How delighted my parents , Nana and Grandad Winch, would be to see so many of their descendants having such a wonderful reunion, and celebrating "FAMILY" .

There has been lots of noise, a great deal of happy chatter, and much laughter as funny incidents from the past, and the foibles and eccentricities of various relatives are recalled!

I have given up counting heads and places at mealtimes. But by the time all the Christian-Baileys have joined us, plus the McRitchies from Fletcher Christian, there can be anything upwards of 16 of us. And now Sarah and Emily are catching up with Anna and Amy, their cousins on the other side of the family, it has become even more noisy and hectic!

But we would not have it any other way!!!

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