a house full of little ones

12.31.11 ~ Athol, Massachusetts
Lizzie, 5, made this drawing, a Christmas gift for me ~ 12.31.11 ~ Athol, Massachusetts

Viktor and Aneta Urich of Grande Prairie [Alberta, Canada] welcomed the birth of their 100th grandchild earlier this month – newborn Henry Urich, ninth child of Tatjana and Heinrich Urich. Heinrich is one of Viktor and Aneta’s 16 children.

How does he keep them all straight?

“Good question,” laughs Viktor, 62. “Sometimes when I look, I say ‘What’s your name?'”

(The Canadian Press)

And we thought we were confused!

12.31.11 ~ Athol, Massachusetts
Clarice playing hide and seek with unidentified imp ~ 12.31.11 ~ Athol, Massachusetts

Yesterday we went to visit Tim’s cousin in Massachusetts, who was hosting a family Christmas gathering. Four generations, ranging in age from 2 to 75 years old. Twenty-seven people in all, including one aunt, four cousins, nine second cousins, two third cousins, and not to be overlooked, six spouses and significant others and five foster children. Or, using another method for sorting the gang out, fifteen adults, three teens and nine little ones. We had but two hours on our way home to sort out the numbers and connections… Not as impressive as the couple in Alberta but…

We did our share of asking, “What’s your name?”

12.31.11 ~ Athol, Massachusetts
Dima & Larisa, familiar faces ~ 12.31.11 ~ Athol, Massachusetts

We weren’t there two minutes when little Delyah, 2, inquired “Who are you?” and then put me to work brushing her pony’s hair and fastening barrettes on its tail.

In a little while Nova, 4, sporting sparkly temporary tattoos on her arms, introduced herself and asked me where my tattoos were. (Both her parents have visible tattoos.) I regretted having to disappoint her.

As the afternoon went on, a little one of uncertain age kept saying,”Thanks, Santa,” when Tim would toss one of the balloons her way. Do you think it had something to do with his whitish beard and all the red he was wearing?

12.31.11 ~ Athol, Massachusetts
Santa? ~ 12.31.11 ~ Athol, Massachusetts

It was wonderful seeing everybody again, and meeting new additions to the clan. A clan that adores its children!

Tim & I got ourselves a new camera for Christmas and it was our first chance to use it. So far we’re very pleased with the results and we have so much more to learn about using it!

Hannah, 9, made this pet rock, a Christmas gift for her dad ~ 12.31.11 ~ Athol, Massachusetts