Sister series, part 1

People / Sunday, June 3rd, 2012

Confession: Everything I know about life I learned from my sisters.*

How many do you have? you ask.

Nine, and counting.

Marriage is a very useful institution, not only “for the mutual societie, helpe, and comfort, that the one ought to have of the other, bothe in prosperity and adversitye…”

…but for the charming sisters you gain from the bargain.

*I have to mention I’m stretching things a little, just in case you’re in doubt. My moms by birth and marriage threw a lot into the melting pot of me, and my four-year-old is adding bucketfuls. Also my cat has taught me a lot. Oh, and I think Ryan learned me a few things along the way. Yeah, and my dad too.

In fact: I think I am mostly a by-product of the goodness of others.

This week I’d like to do a series of posts on things I have learned from these nine women, Zooks and Coblentzes by birth or by marriage. They are very different one from another. Some are stunningly blond and blue-eyed. Some are beautifully dark-eyed, dark haired. Some live on the West Coast, some on the East. Some have been married for many years; some are newlyweds. Some have children. Some do not.

Each is good at many things. Here are a few skills and secrets they’ve shared with me.


Though not a hunter at heart, Amanda took up hunting as a way of entering her husband’s world. She has shot some great trophies with him—deer, elk, and I don’t know what all. Their shared interest leads to fun times as a family: camping, hiking, and togetherness.

In respect for this example, I have taken up politics. So far my views include:

  • Down with Rush Limbaugh!
  • I can’t help hoping Mr. Obama will be reelected. I care much less what the President of America thinks about policies—even health care and the national debt and gay rights; I’m not looking to the government to save the land from the Fall–and much more about whether the President of America is a good man. As far as I can tell (and I don’t read the news; I read nothing but politician’s faces, please laugh here) he is easily the best of the lot. I would rather our nation be led by a man who walks true to his beliefs, however liberal they are, than by a sweet-talking conservative-cum-chameleon man with the face of a crook.
  • Google News is a nice place to gain a few phrases to drop casually into conversation with your husband. He will be impressed, and you don’t need to tell him they are a surface sheen of intelligence atop a dark ocean of ignorance.

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10 years ago

I agree with your politics, particularly that of the President’s inability as one individual to single-handedly make or break the nation. As for Rush Limbaugh. Oh. my. I avoid his nonstop, angry outbursts like the plague.

mama zook
10 years ago

we all are mostly a by-product of the goodness of others! And I love the way you are giving credit to those sisters who have helped you to grow into the woman you are becoming. One of my goals is to try and thank each of those who have helped in the process of God’s molding and purging and growing me while they are still alive and well!! instead of waiting until their body lies cold and unhearing in a box at the front of a church! BTW, Rush can only be in my kitchen for a short time to cover some of the quiet before he gets kicked out, and he never usually makes my mood a positive one! You are one of those that encourage my heart! I love this blog!

10 years ago

I knew I liked you from the start.

Though not an American, your political views amuse and bless me. I couldn’t agree more.

10 years ago

“a surface sheen of intelligence atop a dark ocean of ignorance.”

I love this phrase.

I disagree with your comment about Obama and politics. 🙂 I think it does matter, whether we want it to or not, who gets elected and what that person believes.

Nothing on this earth can save us from the Fall, but it still matters how we live and conduct ourselves, right? As far as I can tell, that still is a determining factor in deciding whether someone is a good man or not.

10 years ago
Reply to  Renee

I love the honesty! 🙂

Let’s have a presidential-candidate-hash in person sometime. I bet we could handle it, whaddya think? I totally agree it matters! but I’m thinking of it in a different way. Thanks for the push-back!