Friday, July 02, 2010


My extended family is rather large; I can trace my family tree back to the late 1700s in Botetourt County and so I have lots of 4th cousins once removed and folks I barely know who I can call "cousin" if I so desire and be accurate. In fact, my husband and I are fifth cousins, meaning we share a set of grandparents about six generations back. Which makes me related to my father-in-law and all of his family as well; they are fourth cousins I think. They could be fourth cousins once removed. I get that mixed up once you get that far back on the family tree.

Anyway, my mother had four brothers and one sister, and they all had children, so my first cousins are bountiful as well. And they have now had children (my first cousins once removed; second cousins means you share great-grandparents, not grandparents, it gets confusing).

Recently a bunch of these  immediate cousins gathered to celebrate the graduation of one of the children.

My first cousin by marriage, Gina who is married to my cousin Matthew, and her daughter Madison, who is my first cousin once-removed. Madison is my aunt's granddaughter; Matthew is her son.

Kayleigh, on the left, is my first cousin LeighAnn's daughter, so Kayleigh is my first cousin once removed.  She is with Madison. LeighAnn is my uncle's daughter.

Ashleigh, who was graduating from home school to college, was the reason for the celebration. Ashleigh is my cousin Michelle's daughter, so Ashleigh is also my first cousin once removed.

Kelsey, on the left, is Michelle's daughter, so she is my first cousin once removed. Michelle, on the right, is my uncle's daughter, so she is my first cousin.

Supposedly I and all of these cousins are related to two separate presidents but I have never proved that so I don't make that claim and wouldn't make the claim for one of the supposed presidents anyway even if it were true. I am eligible for Daughters of the American Revolution and Daughters of the Confederacy inclusion but have never bothered to fill out the paperwork. I have set that aside as something to do when I am old(er).

I am lucky to have such an extended family. I know not many people know their first cousins, much less their fourth, fifth and sixth ones.


  1. A very handsome family, indeed. Because of not-so-unusual infighting between grandparents' families, I'm only familiar with a handful of my own second and third cousins; of fourth cousins, there's no reliable record, because of the destruction of Jewish history in Eastern Europe.

  2. Growing up I had 27 first cousins. I think 4 have passed away since my childhood years.

    I had 2 male cousins.. they were brothers. They dated girls from another family during their high school years who were sisters. My cousins each married the gals, so their kids are double cousins.

    Also, my grandfather lost his wife to the flu, so he married a second time. One of his sons married the new wife's sister. So his new step-mom was also his sister-in-law. When the son (who was my half uncle) had children, his step-mom was not only his childrens' step grandmother, she was also their great aunt. His kids were also my 1/2 cousins because he was my 1/2 uncle since he and my dad had the same dad but not the same mom. Got kind of weird sometimes trying to figure it all out. LOL


  3. Wow you do have a big family! I think family gives you such a sense of belonging. At least I think so- mine is not that big and they are scattered all over, south and north. And my husband is an only as well as his mother so not much family there.

    Your family sure is a nice looking bunch!

  4. Nice looking family. My Mom researched her side of the family back to their arrival in America. Some came on the Mayflower and some were early settlers here in Virginia. I joined the DAR through her research. A cousin on my Dad's side researched his family back to Pre Revolutionary War times. I'm probably related to half of the people in Eastern North Carolina through him. I know my first cousins, but when you get further than that, they are just names to me.


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