Saturday, July 12, 2008

Time well spent making memories...

Leaving on a jet plane

Behold! Rewards are many when married children bring their own children back home to visit, a home they haven't seen before mind you, however things within it were familiar no less, and it's the rest of the family's home they had come to visit here in the east. This post is overdue, but it's here! Yeah!

The original plan was supposed to see our son return home again after two weeks to report back to work, the rest of his family were to remain for an additional two weeks afterwards. Another daughter had planned to fly here and overlap her own visit with everyone else (older sister included) so she could assist our daughter in law with the children when all returned home again. But she wasn’t able to fulfill that obligation and had to rescind the offer to help out.

Instead of having four of our precious grandchildren for a month in total, two weeks would have to do. But the bonus was also having our older daughter reroute her trip to enable her to drop by for four days while in the east on business.

Oldest daughter and her niece

Our home is large enough to accommodate company easily, and we were all very comfortable while everyone was here. The hardest part is knowing it will be some time before we meet again. Strangely since their departure our hallways have been ghostly quiet without the daily pitter patter of little feet running about, and we all miss them terribly, just like when our other son came last summer with his wife and our three oldest granddaughters, leaving us later on.

If there is anything we miss more with geographical changes, it is our ability to visit, cuddle and hug the rest of our family often. Everyone knew if they were nearby, dropping in was a must. Often when my hubby was out of town, one of the marrieds would drop by to whisk mom for dessert and coffee, or to observe one of their ice hockey games. There was always a misty chaos in our home with children and grandchildren of all ages, but a common chaos that would bring a big grin to my lips at the end of such a day when we had all come together, however brief a time it was. I welcomed the chaos, still do, however life has definitely changed living elsewhere.

I always find it difficult to put into words the emotion of having to bid adieu to my children and grandchildren upon any sort of visit the past few years. Families sometime take it for granted they will always be together. Ours no longer feels that way.

Grandpa with our youngest grandbaby

We cherished every moment with our family visiting here in our home. From the wee hours when very early risers opened up their bedroom doors to peek out and see if anyone else was awake, to the busyness of the day in progress, there was always something to just sit back and gulp up in the memory banks. I find myself doing that often you know, maybe it’s a grandmother thing? I like to sit back and observe greatly, thoughts rumbling about in my head and savoring “Kodak moments” in my heart for the future. And when times are tough, I allow those moments to resurface and joy immediately fills my heart again to bolster confidence within any difficult situation.

Our son with his youngest daughter

Our youngest grandbaby is already six months old and she was the sweetest and most enjoyable little girl to have in our midst, her special song of sweet cooing resonating throughout the day. Always grinning easily with her signature smile and sometimes a little tip of her tongue sticking out, she was continually being scooped up into someone's arms, lavish kisses on the cheek included in the cuddles. It was such a delight to get to know her so much more, yet too short of a time for her to remember us by.

Little hands played with Nana's new batch
of playdoh, made especially for this visit.

Her older sister, 2yo Rose was always on hand, sometimes becoming a handful but her smile would/could easily melt anyone's heart and turn them into pure mush! She was the most intuitive little one for assisting anyone in the kitchen, always bringing dirty dishes from in front of meal partakers to the sink; even her daddy’s coffee cup was hauled away from him when it was emptied.

She has no fear, something that scares us all to bits because her guardian angel is certainly working overtime watching out for her. She has almost been hit by a car, running out onto the road back home after squeezing through the smallest crack in the backyard fence. She likes to turn on the stove burners and cook with mommy when mommy isn’t in the kitchen yet, and while here, it was necessary for her to wear a harness as she attempted to run away from daddy at a large international airport. She even sneaked away on the airplane and ran down the aisle to find mommy while she was changing a diaper in the bathroom, her daddy surprised by her swift and sneaky exit.

A special "Rose"

Her godfather passed away suddenly last year, so we know he is also watching out for her, working overtime alongside her guardian angel in all likelihood. When they all returned home, two more incidences left everyone's heads spinning, so I beg you to say a little prayer for her that she is shielded from harm. May God bless you little one...

Her older brother, our young grandson, thoroughly enjoyed his time reading with Nana (me) as we read the adventures of “Henry the explorer” (by Mark Taylor), seasonal picture books that simmered much in his mind to recreate with his uncle in the back of the property after each reading. No doubt these funs stories will forever leave an imprint on his mind for flag making projects sitting inside his backpack to mark his trails. Thomas, watch your mailbox sweetie...

What can we say?

It runs in the family, shoes on the right feet, or not.

His older 11yo uncle was smitten with him, and together they were inseparable the entire two weeks. So cute! They played with their bows and arrows, our trickle trunk dress-up collection, lightsavers, they ran in high heat to get a round of ball hockey in, and wandered all over the property.

The cast of players

All of the younger children played games together, happily played piano duets with their sister in law, and entertained everyone with their drama acts complete with refreshments passed around during an intermission. Their creativity in replicating a theater was something to behold, using little white twinkling lights which lit up and floated down our basement stairwell. Handmade signs directed our paths with arrows pointing towards the production stage, and then drama programs were handed to each member of their audience. Very sweet! And these were so much fun to watch both times!

Our older grand-daughter from this family

Working on her driver's license (wink) with her daddy

Last but not least, our sweet older granddaughter and her 9yo auntie were also inseparable, holding hands while walking about, and dancing around the house together dressed like fairies. As a matter of fact, they dressed up quite a bit, jumped on the trampoline daily, and slept in the same room, usually talking for quite some time before settling down at night. As history would repeat itself, she lost a tooth while visiting us AGAIN this year. Last year, her uncle surprised her by pulling a very loose tooth out of her mouth, so we teased her about doing the same thing yet again.

Bonded together in a special way, our poor youngest daughter cried herself to sleep the night they left for home. It always hits her so hard when anyone leaves after a visit with us.

Our son, third eldest in the family

I think our son and his wife had a great time discovering all there was to see and do near our home, and of course - experiencing the quiet of country living on our property was so very peaceful for their weary souls. Opportunities abounded for them, having dates alone while the rest of us took over the gang so they could refresh their weary spirits from their recent year long home renovations and subsequent sale of it with only a thirty day time restriction to pack it up once it sold. They needed this vacation, and we were happy to have them all here with us.

Our visit became perfect timing to get these two rested up again, romancing one another with plenty of alone couple time when necessary, being here for “Father’s Day” which was ultra special, and spending time with my hubby and I (but it’s important for the older ones to spend time with their father as his health continues to decline).

Dad and Daughter in law

The bonus for us here in the east was the fact that these were our four younger children’s older brother and his wife, and then their oldest sister who later joined in, all were actual siblings and not just any other company. They had all truly missed each other, therefore plenty of family bonding and "together-time" was in full swing daily, something missed terribly since our move here.

Our oldest daughter was able to visit briefly on her own

If anyone can attest to the family chaos reigning inside of our home at any given time, surely it would have to be our oldest daughter. smile This was her first visit with us in our home here in the east, and she happily blended into the fold from the practice she had already had throughout the years before now. Though she came on this trip alone, we loved having her to ourselves and enjoyed watching her relax while she visited with all of us. She was a good sport rendering herself available to attend a parade her younger brother and sister were involved in, and was pulled all over the place by siblings and parents alike. :-0

Just me and two of my BIG BOYS!

(and humidity driven poufy hair!)

The visits were all good, an abundance of memory banks were refilled and unspoken words of love still remain on our lips because we don't like to say goodbye to one another when we part!
Moreover, it really was very grand for us to have them all over...until we do this again everyone, right?

CRAZY storms came almost every day they were all here

When it was time to head for the airport, thunder and lightning filled the skies. The power went off inside of the airport for a brief few moments, shutting down all of the computers. I tried not feeling panic dwell up inside knowing they would soon board the plane and fly directly into and/or around this very same storm towards another larger airport for connecting to another flight, or in the case of our older daughter, she would stay on in the larger city for business.

It wasn’t the most pleasant time to fly as radio broadcasters were still warning of a “severe storm” moving in, tornado weather continually in progress. Our prayers gathered momentum while waving to them from the ground.

Later we found out a tornado did indeed touch down during their flight not far from their flying path, thus the extra bumpy ride for them all. As my daughter in law said, I just held on to the baby so tightly and told the others it wasn’t funny to squeal out “weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee” while other patrons were turning green. Praise God all were safe and well during this crazy flight!

Until the next time we are together, bless you all, love you lots!