The Fab Five reasons everyone should have cousins ... lots of them

This past week was a blur - in the best way possible.

My sister-in-law, nephew and niece loaded up their minivan and made an impromptu trek to wrap up a few things in Ohio. It was a very last-minute trip, but boy am I glad they made it.

It's funny. Just the other week I was thinking about how much I missed my brother and his little family and suddenly, a week later, 75% of them are sleeping in my basement (unfortunately my brother was away on business).

Sometimes I guess things really do work out for the best.

With Eli's fourth birthday looming in the future and the twin cousins recent first, the more time they get to spend together the stronger the bond they form. What better topic to dedicate this Fab Five Friday to than the two cousins my daughter just spent the last three days with.

No. 1) They're built-in, born best friends. Cousins are the people you get to spend all those awkward family moments with, so how could you not be best friends? Instead of listening to parents drone on about the good old days, you can go play kickball or ghost in the graveyard with your cousins. Or heck, you can even enjoy a good swing.

No. 2) They're also the people you get to spend your vacations with. Whether its Fourth of July fireworks, summer trips to the zoo or a baby's first view of the ocean, cousins are those people you get to spend those weeks with when mom and dad have a little extra time on their hands. Plus, they're the friends you can get into trouble with when you're out to eat.

No. 3) Because they're not just there for the big moments, they're around for the small ones as well. Whether it's a first birthday party or merely a three-day excursion "just because," cousins are the people you get to share everything with. Sometimes that just means a trip to a nearby park to cool off.

No. 4) They're always just a phone call away. Whether you grow closer or further apart over the years, they're never more than a phone call away. I was lucky enough to grow up with three female cousins whom I spent several summers with. While we've all followed our own paths over the years, I don't doubt for one second that they'd be there if I called.

No. 5) Because they accept you. Even if you don't make a lot of money, don't know what you want to do with your life or heaven forbid if you're a bit different. Crazy vegan or hamburger-loving addict, cousins love you just the same. And if you're really lucky, they'll even share a dairy, egg and cruelty-free cupcake with you for your birthday.

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