Thursday, April 28, 2011

Our Easter... and a Great Story

It started out very different for us. With one kid battling (again) a nasty cold, and myself with a sore throat, we decided to keep our germs to ourselves and skipped church. It was sad for me; I love Easter Sunday celebrations. So instead, I turned on the local Christian radio station and listened to the soundtrack of Easter Sundays past. They rolled out some old classics from Don Francisco and Rich Mullins that I haven't heard in years.

With the unexpected free time, I decided to make some Resurrection Rolls to take to our Twist family dinner. I followed her basic instructions, but made my own bread dough, and brushed the dough with water instead of butter before rolling them in the cinnamon. They were super yummy, and everyone loved the symbolism. Sorry... no photos! (what was I thinking?)

Dinner at my in-laws' house is always festive. They live just a few miles down the road in a log cabin that they built when my husband was a strapping teenager who could be pressed into heavy labor. He has lots of stories of taking the bark off of locally felled trees, near-fatal accidents with chainsaws, an old 1940's crane to lift the logs, and the time he had a party while his parents were away, and they came home to find kids sitting up on the log rafters. Good times.

We had a huge ham dinner, complete with green beans and scalloped potatoes, and the long-lost branch of the family that I finagled an introduction to a couple of years ago. Did I ever tell you that story? Its a good one. My evil twin at her best.

There was a Wii bowling tournament for the older cousins, a sweet baby helping in the kitchen, book reading time, and great conversations.

Okay, now I have searched my blog over and found that I have never told the story of the Other Twists, so if you want to know, here goes...

For the first 8 or 10 years of our marriage, we would hear from time to time of another Twist family that lived in the area. This made us curious, since my Father-in-Law's known relatives are mostly concentrated in upstate New York. Starting in about 2007, we were hearing of them more often... at the pizza joint, getting their books at the library instead of our own, mixed up packages of photos at Fred Meyer, and even some slight confusion at our local John Deere dealership. These were obviously people who shared some similarities with us.

I knew from their description that He was similar enough in appearance to my Mr. Twist to be his brother, that She was tall and had curly hair like mine, but dark, and that they had two daughters, both adopted from China.

So one Autumn day, while at the library with the kids (then a toddler and baby in a stroller), when I saw a man with a daughter next to us in the kid section, my internal Hunch System clicked into gear. I had absolutely nothing concrete to base it on, but somehow I just knew that this was Him. Not wanting to come right out and say his name, knowing how weird that would seem, and even more, how awkward it would be if it wasn't Him, I decided to let my Sneaky Evil Twin take over.

"Come on, Mr. Twist" I said (loudly) to my 2 1/2 year old, taking him by the hand, and acting as if we were going to walk away (but watching Him out of the corner of my eye to see if He reacted at all). Oh, sneaky, sneaky girl!

Sure enough, He looked up, startled, and said, "is that your last name? My name is Twist too!" And just in case I might think He was a weirdo (little did He know!), he pulled out his ID to prove it to me. Of course, I acted all innocent and surprised, and pure as the driven snow.

Our following conversation very quickly turned to where each branch of the family had originated, and sure enough, both were from New York. I handed him my business card with email and phone number, and within two weeks they were sitting in our home comparing identical copies of a family tree from a long-ago reunion, discovering that my Mr. Twist and the newly discovered Mr. Twist share a Great-Great Grandpa. And not just the Grandpa, they also share similar personalities, hobbies, and political views, as if they were raised brothers. For both men, raised with only sisters and having no nearby cousins, finding a male relative in the same age range and with similar interests has been a treasured experience.

And I take great pride in the fact that if it weren't for me and my ability to connive, the reunion would not have taken place at all (I didn't confess to the other Twists what I had done until our second meeting, when I was sure they would react with laughter rather than alarm!).


Catherine said...

I hope you all are feeling better. That's a great story!!

Gregg said...

Sorry we missed you all on Sunday. And we of course know the other Twist family because their oldest is in Andy's class, and their youngest is in Emily's, and we bombarded them with questions in our journey to bring Emily home from China.

Jennifer said...


Hope you and your family are feeling much better soon!

I love all your designs and talent!

Feathers in the Nest

Jeana said...

That is such a great story! Loved the pictures, too.

Alice said...

Such a wonderful story!
I hope you all feel better now.

Rochelle said...

That's a great story! I was laughing at your conniving way. That was pretty funny!