Friday, July 24th marks National Cousins Day! For many of us, our cousins are the first "friends" we make outside out immediate families. I can only speak for myself, but I'd say this is pretty true. In fact, although I have many cousins & double cousins (I'll discuss this a little later) that I love with all my heart, a couple of them (pictured) might as well be my sisters!

It is interesting that no matter if it's a close-knit family or only see each other on special occasions, cousins memories are usually shared with fondness. In my family (on my mom's side) most of those memories deal with our Grandparents house. Easter celebrations & egg hunts, birthday parties, Christmas & receiving the "same old toys",   to even helping Grandpa work in the orchard. A vast majority of these memories are positive, between all the family members.

My family is pretty big with 21 first cousins, I'm not even going to count the 2nd cousins. My family is extra "special" where as we have 2 sets of "double cousins". If you've never heard of the term "double cousin", ESH-Genelogy Research states that double cousins occur "when two siblings of one family have children with two siblings of another family (brother/brother, sister/sister or brother/sister, sister/brother). The children are related to each other through both of their parents and are considered double related." When you get down to genetics, "double cousins could test with numbers consistent with half-siblings." Without getting into the nitty gritty, and naming names, one of my double sets happened when my two uncles on my mom's side, married two sisters. Those couples each had two kids. The other set of double cousins deal with my brother & I, and one of our other cousins. My mom's brother (she has 3 siblings if you're keeping track) married my dad's sister. So you have a sister/brother marrying a brother/sister. They had a daughter, so that daughter is the double cousin to my brother and I. Let's just say, in high school biology class, we were asked to draw up our family tree... I got extra credit. Happy National Cousin Day Everyone!