Gudenas Sister Week

Justine Zumba

The woman in the bluish top with her hands over her head is my big sister Justine in her Zumba class.  You can tell right away she’s unusual because most 71-year-old women don’t look this physically fit, youthful.  I’m ridiculously proud of her.  She’s always set amazingly high standards, an incredible example in many facets of life that inspire me.

She’s been a victorious trial attorney with extensive experience in civil rights litigation. Now she’s a full-time writer, extraordinarily creative, a true artist.  She lives life on her terms.

For most of the year we’re separated by 3,000 miles as she lives in Philadelphia. This is the time we take turns visiting each other to pack a year of sisterhood into one week.

She arrives on Monday with her delightful 18-year-old son, Gabriel.

Gabriel getting diploma 2015_6

We’ll go running every morning.

Village Run #3

Monday night we’ll have a traditional Lithuanian Christmas Eve dinner.


Tuesday we’ll do our usual Christmas tradition of exploring lavishly decorated lobbies of San Francisco’s most elegant grand hotels.

Kucios Fairmont Hotel

We’ll top that off with a madcap drive up and down the steep San Francisco hills, a drive Gabriel loves.

kucios Nob Hill 2

And then a movie.

Wednesday we’ll drive down the California coast to Big Sur.

Kucios Big Sur

Thursday we’ll hike across the Golden Gate Bridge.

Kucios Golden Gate Bridge

Friday we’ll drive up to Calistoga in the wine country for a spa experience, surrendering to the natural geyser-produced hot springs mineral waters and a fabulous massage.

Kucios Calistoga spa

Saturday shopping (“Here, try this on, come on, just try it.  See!  It does look good on you!”).

Kucios Shopping

Kucios teaInterspersed will be intense conversations over hot tea.  It’s not unusual for us to stay up till 4 AM talking.  About anything and everything.  Important mixed with trivial, lots of girl stuff.  We’ll relive memories, we’ll talk about our parents, the aunt we painfully miss.  We’ll laugh much.  We’ll share everything we’ve learned over the last year.  We’ll explore our goals for next year, our dreams.  We’ll inspire each other.  We’ll laugh even more.

She’ll boss me around.  I’ll boss her around.  We’ll boss Gabriel around and he’ll boss us around.  We have a bossy family.  That laughs a lot.

A sister like no other.  A nephew like no other.  A week like no other.

Justine Easter 2015 - 2 1

May you also have a joy-filled holiday week like no other.

Love, Ingrid

One thought on “Gudenas Sister Week

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s