Beth Cruikshank, 11, likes weddings. She liked her mom's wedding, she liked her dad's wedding. She likes the music, the ceremony, her new dress.
Carol picked Beth's dress--satiny, ankle-length, with lace around the neck. "My stepmom is real nice," Beth says. "She asked me if I liked the dress. I liked it a lot!"
What did she like best at the wedding? She liked the exchange of rings, which was so nice she cried. She liked the kiss, and cried again--but she would have made it last longer, and at her wedding she will make it last longer, because that kiss is what matters at a wedding.
Beth has composure and smarts. She plays right forward in soccer and scores often. ("I like to score," she says. "That's what matters in soccer.") In baseball, she is a shortstop. She also swims, plays basketball and is interested in computers.
Her brother Billy, 10, likes baseball and scouting. What he liked at his dad's wedding were his new suit ("Maybe I'll get to wear it again") and the candy ("I've been eating a lot of it"). Though the wedding was "old- fashioned" and the music too quiet, he says, "I guess when I get married it will be something like that."
Asked who picked his suit, Billy says, "my mom. I mean my other mom."
"Carol made a big difference how Billy feels about going to see his father," his natural mother says. "My kids now enjoy seeing their father more. Beth always wanted to go, but a couple of times Billy didn't want to. Now he is always asking when they go. It's the third weekend every month."
"Now I have a big, big family," Beth says. "My mom has three brothers and two sisters, my stepdad has two brothers and one sister, my dad has a brother and a sister, and my stepmom has two brothers and two sisters. They are all my uncles and aunts, and they have children and they are my cousins. It's a big, big family."