So I have this sister named Andrea who is charismatic, witty, energetic, smart, beautiful, ambitious, vivacious, and lots and lots of fun. (Don’t let my long tardiness in introducing her indicate otherwise—that was just me hoping I could introduce her as the co-author of our published book. Ahhh, maybe someday.)
We have the strong and binding tie of being the only redheads in our family. My Grandpa Walburger always called Andrea ‘Big Red’ and me ‘Little Red.’
Anyway- here we are together, with Dad, who is obviously exceedingly proud of his gorgeous redheads. :) (Andrea is the one on the left with the sensational ‘fro, I am the little one with cute shoes. My dad is the one with the awesome mustache.)
Andrea generally has short spikyish hair (which I love) and she loves Gem and the Holograms, John Wayne (deeply), Willie Nelson, chocolate cake, 70’s style home decor, and naming things.
Megan, Derek, Amy, and Andrea.
What I remember about Andrea the most when we were young was that she was THE most fun to play games with. I don’t mean like board games or barbies (although I do remember her playing barbies with Kami and I a few times), but she made up the most involved, awesome plots for us to play. The main one was called ‘Runaways’ and okay, it was actually just the plot from the movie ‘Courage Mountain’, but still it was always very fun and inventive. We were all orphans in an orphanage run by a cruel master and we had to run away and he would come after us and we had to hide from him and so on. So we woud be wherever, finding awesome hideouts and running around and it was awesome. We would play with our cousins sometimes, in the neighborhood or up on the mountainside. There were other good games too, like ‘Snake’ (played on the top bunk bed) and things like that.
Here’s more of the family at Waterton – me and Andrea on the left, then Kami, Lindsay, Ethan, Megan and Jared.
When I was in second grade and she was in sixth she really hated her teacher and would sometimes randomly leave her class and come to my classroom and tell my teacher she needed to talk to me and so I would come out in the hallway, all in awe that my older sister needed me, and she would say ‘what’s up?’ or something like that and we’d just chill for a few minutes.
The other thing I loved about having Andrea for a big sister when I was little was that she was always writing the most amazing books. She had notebooks and notebooks full, and to me, they were the best books ever! I looooved them. She and I have very similar tastes in books and romantic stories and things like that, and I was never less than enchanted with her books. In Kentucky in particular I remember her waiting for the bus and scribbling in her notebooks, and also she memorized the poem ‘The Highwayman’ just because she wanted to.
There’s actually a funny story about those notebooks—and it only came to light about 10 years after it had happened. So, we were moving from Kentucky back to Utah, and everyone was supposed to have been helping. Well, Amy came upon Andrea not helping and she told her she had to, and Andrea didn’t want to be bossed around, so they got in a fight, and Andrea punched Amy and Amy was really mad that her little sister was getting the best of her physically, so she went into her room, picked up some of the notebooks and RRRIIIIPPPPPP – gone. Of course, being in the middle of a move, it was just assumed that the notebooks had been lost, but years later when Amy was in college she was writing a paper for a class and she wrote about this experience and shared it with Andrea, and Andrea had to be restrained from beating her up again. :)
This is a drawing Andrea once did for me. Scary women were the only subjects she would ever draw.
Andrea has a beautiful voice and loves to sing. In highschool her thing was singing in choir and being in plays. Let’s see how many I can remember—Little Shop of Horrors (I never saw that one), Brigadoon, 7 Brides for 7 Brothers, 12 Dancing Princesses, Sound of Music, and Guys and Dolls. Did I miss any?
And then she went to BYU a year early, which coincided with the year our family moved from Utah to North Dakota, so for the years I was 13-17, we just saw each other at Christmas and other visits, instead of being in the same house. It’s different, but we always emailed a lot (especially as I got older) and talked on the phone sometimes. When we were together we would stay up late talking and I think I learned a lot of good stuff about dating and flirting etc. from her. :) (Okay, that sounds cheesy the way I wrote it, but anyone with an older sister understands, right?)
AND THEN happiness!!!!—Kami and I went to Utah State the same year, and Andrea came too for graduate school and we had SOOOO MUCH fun. This is us at the American Heritage center. With some oxen.
We did all kinds of fun crazy stuff and she took such good care of us. She first lived in a little rental house, and she would cook dinner all the time and do our laundry sometimes, and take us places like the grocery store and dances and Celtic festivals. Two instances in particular that were sooo nice was on Easter she got little bags full of Easter candy for Kami and I just because, and when it was Brett’s birthday I asked her if she would cook a really special dinner for us to have at HER apartment so that I could surprise Brett. She happily did it for us and then called Brett and told him some story that something had broken (their toilet maybe?) and could he come fix it. Then she made herself scarce so we could eat dinner alone together. :)
I feel I am not doing a good enough job explaining how much fun it is to hang out with Andrea—she’s VERY exciteable. And just the person you want to know if you ever have a strong urge to dance mosh-pit style to Weezer music. You know she’s always absolutely up for it!
But, Andrea is a better writer than I am, so let me show you in HER witty words (from emails), what kind of fun we had (I just start laughing when I read this because I just remember how funny we were). (Oh yeah, if you’re familiar with the story of how Brett and I got together, you may remember how he didn’t like me at first because he thought I was “weird”—well, it’s because almost all of the times he saw me I was with Kami and Andrea, and we just enjoy each other’s company so much that we become what SOME might term… hyper. But really it’s just awesomeness. (And incidentally, Andrea was very loyal to me and Brett when Mom was concerned about me getting married, and she kept saying how good of guy he was—thanks Ands))
After that Kayli climbed in a shopping cart and started waving her arms yelling, "I am flying," with a cool accent. So I pushed her really fast, and we both flew, and when we almost (I had very good brakes) ran into this older couple, the man started laughing really hard. It was awesome.
Jennie was there, and introduced Kayli and me to Jake …(can you get a better name???) and his friend Jared, after I had already started talking to them randomly. Jake is a pretty good dancer although when Kayli got a little TOO excited when they were playing a swing song and made him try lifts that he had never tried before, he dropped her on her head. . . twice. I winced, then laughed really hard. It was humorous. The highlight of the evening was cotten-eye Joe, when Jake and Kayli and I yelled Yea-haw and yea doggy-dog (okay that was me) a lot.
Jennie invited us to go into the canyon and cook tin foil dinners, which is also tempting because I am going crazy wanting to go run through the hills with my cap guns and pretend to be an apache, or a Sackett.
She did play cap guns sometimes—I remember when I went to BYU for a scholarship competition thingee, then I stayed for a few more days with her and she showed me a good time in Provo, we broke out the cap guns one night. She had (still has?) a pretty good collection.
So pretty much this plan worked:
PS Kayli, of COURSE we are going to find hot guys together, because then, when the weak/insipid ones have been scared off--we will KNOW who the TRULY great ones are (they will still be there) and that will make husband-hunting so much easier. Yeah. I can't wait for you two to get here!!!!!!!!!!! Just another month and a half baby. LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!
So yeah, then I married Brett and she married Tim- and we had fun together. Tim and Brett went mountain biking and we all went camping together and hung out.
Here’s another excerpt from a random email she wrote about playing a basketball game that made me laugh:
I was very proud of our team considering ages and amounts of children. Some girls on the other team said they were jealous that we had husbands to cheer us on, which, I have to admit, is nicer than being single and YOUNG AND SPRY. The funniest part of the game was when I was dribbling (really, I never dribble) and I was very excited so I was doing a little singing (sometimes I can't help myself) and this girl on the other team started laughing, so I said, "Hey, I'm dribbling," and she said, "Yeah, but you are also singing," like it was this really weird thing to be doing.
I love this picture of Andrea and Tim and Miriam and Brett and I and Jethro at Red Rock Canyon in Waterton. We had such a good time.
Us with our redheaded children:
Oh yeah, I forgot to point out an interesting tidbit. Andrea is related to her husband. Okay, not really. But now that she married him she is double-related to our sister Megan. You see, Tim is Jared’s (Megan’s husband) nephew. Therefore, Megan is Andrea’s sister AND aunt. Megan’s kids are her nieces and nephews as well as her cousins. Awesome I know. There was this one time when Andrea and Tim had started dating and then broken up, and Jared’s younger brother Matt was coming to visit Jared in North Dakota before he left on his mission, and Tim came along to ‘keep him company’? or something like that, not because Andrea happened to be in North Dakota then too. (Just for the record, Minot North Dakota is about a 16 hour drive away from the Wasatch front, Utah.)
This is Jared, Matt, and Tim on the right. (This picture is from when we were all camping at Lake Metigoshe.)
So while they were there, Tim and Andrea hung out a bit, and one night after mostly everyone had gone to bed, we convinced Tim and Matt to go to the park and play night games. And we went to Jared’s apartment and convinced him to come too. Oh, and we got Wyatt out of bed and he came too. So it was Jared, Tim, Matt, Kami, me, and Wyatt. And we went to the park close by our house and started playing Sardines or something, and after not very long at all, there was a bit of a predicament when Matt realized he had lost the keys to his truck. And then the cops came. They made us leave since the park was closed after sunset. Then we walked home and got in trouble and Matt’s mom fedexed him another truck key the next day. Fun times.
I talked to Tim on the phone a while ago and asked him to briefly say some things he loved about Andrea:
She takes good care of our kids and she is attractive and she's excited about life. -Tim
More trivia about Andrea, in her own words:
6. If you were a crayon, what color would you be?
12. Favorite sport to watch? Tim coming in from a bike
ride all sweaty and dirty
13. Have you ever dyed your hair? no, are you pyscho!?
I don't mess with perfection.
34. What are you afraid of? Tim thinking I'm too much
trouble and leaving, my kids getting kidnapped, a
36. Favorite car? an olive green mustang from the
46. What do you do most often when you are bored?
think about Timothy, practice writing my kids' names
(Clementine is very pretty written, but I have a hard
time with the H in Harriet), eating
49. Last person you went to dinner with? Timothy--we
went out for Sushi for our traditional October
date--it was fabulous. Tim was in a very strange, Mr.
Bean kind of a mood, so we laughed a lot.
53. How many tattoos do you have? None.
But I periodically put one on for Timothy's benefit.
54. Have you ever run out of gas? Yes, outside of
Kayli's and Brett's apartment in Logan, but Brett made
me feel better because he said there was plenty of gas
but because of the angle of the car the gas couldn't
get wherever gas needs to get to.
71. Most embarrassing CD? I will never be embarrassed
Andrea and I have also written a book together. It’s amazing and would make us millions if it were to be published. But if that doesn’t happen, I kindof think it would be fun to put it up, chapter by chapter, on a blog just for interested readers. Because it was absolutely sooooooo fun to write together. I can’t describe how thrilling it was getting the next chapter in the inbox.
So now she has five kids and one on the way (just like me!) and she homeschools them and she is the RS president and is a sensational chef and I just love her. By the way, Ethne asked me if the picture below was me or Aunt Andrea. :)
The end. Sorry this took so long Ands!