Aunt Joan is our family's cheek pincher. There is always one per family who at first thought seems to be the one to avoid. Her arrivals at family occasions become an event in themselves. Arms loaded down with a little something for everyone, glasses fogged from the cold, coat and scarf and gloves to be removed, mid-sentence before the thresh hold is passed. "Oh darling, you wouldn't believe the traffic. Help Aunt Joan with her packages."
Free of encumbrances, aware of her audience, Kleenex in hand, ready to greet. "Oh sweetheart, I am so happy to see you. Give Aunt Joan a kiss." Shoulders held to better remember, "Dear, how are you? You know I just haven't been sleeping well. Let me tell you."
Settling in close to give you the scoop, interruptions for each new cheek to kiss. Threads of conversation held by the listener, "Where was I darling, you wouldn't believe!"
Aunt Joan has always been this way. A career spent in the accessories department of Lohman's attending societies bargain hunters has created a woman who will fawn over anyone. "Of course you look stunning in that leopard print hat, it's you!" "Oh honey, I just want to squeeze that adorable face of yours."
A little of Aunt Joan can go a long way! Her solicitations can become over bearing at times. My husband; however, has a soft spot in his heart for his Aunt Joan that for years I just couldn't fathom the reason. How many countless times she would lean in to me to whisper, "He always looks like he has just stepped out of a band box. Neat as a pin, and always the penny loafers."