Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Sunday With the Grand Kids

Those of you with grandchildren know that just spending time with them is the matter what you're doing. We had a fun day this past Sunday. Our local high school was putting on their production of Wizard of Oz last weekend and there was a Sunday matinee. I thought it would be a great "girls day" for me to take Jodi, Jess and Savannah to see it. Emery could easily hang with grandpa until we got back. But, as it turned out, Jess had plans to go into Atlanta with friends, Jodi really didn't care to sit through it, and Savannah has decided she doesn't like it because it's scary. We were amazed that a few years ago she would watch it all by herself...but she's changed her mind about it. While we were discussing it, Emery kept saying, "I want to go! I want to go!" So I had a Sunday afternoon date with my grandson. And that was great. (Rest assured, he did not wear the wig to the performance. This is him clowning around in Savannah's costume when she was Dorothy for Halloween the year before last.) He sat very patiently watching everything quietly even though it did drag a little with all the musical numbers. The school kids did a great job, but it was a little slow compared to the movies he's used to watching. Just before intermission, he turned to me and said, quietly, "I don't like it". I told him that was fine and that we could leave when they took a break. So when the lights came up I asked him if he wanted to leave. He thought about it a little, but decided that yes, he had seen enough. He was fascinated with the stage, the props and all the people and we still had a good time.
Meanwhile, back at home, Jodi and Savannah decided they would spend some mother-daughter bonding time and go get manis and pedis. They were back at the house by the time we got there. Savannah also brought her new best friend...a life size (bigger than her) Pink Panther that she got from her other grandma's house and now takes everywhere. It is a hoot. She was sitting on the couch with it and posing it in other places around the house. Finally she decided that PP would make a great new friend for grandpa. So she posed him the way she always sees grandpa: with a coffee cup in one hand and a crossword puzzle book and pen in the other hand. And he really did make a good companion.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Table Rock

We enjoyed our first vacation of 2010 by going with Jodi and the kids to Table Rock Lake in Missouri. Jeremy had a fishing tournament there and the "school of York" just happened to be on spring break. We've been planning it for several months and Jodi was particularly excited about a week in a beautiful cabin in the woods down by the lake just relaxing. Well, we got off to a rocky start. After a LONG day's driving, we were tired and ready to get to the cabin south of Branson. Jodi found it on line and it sounded ideal. Two new cabins on this property boasted 600 acres of forrest behind. They didn't say what was in front! Poor Jeremy was exhausted after driving all night the night before and fishing all day. All he wanted was to get to the cabin and take a nap before we got there. When he arrived, he found the cabin "nestled in a dad-gum trailer park!!!" (His words). After having a no nonsense conversation with the owner and getting our money back, he had to find a place for us to stay that well as all the next week. He found us a very nice suite at the Ramada for Saturday night. That meant we drove an additional 20 to 30 minutes. But once we got settled in, we got some sandwiches and the kids showed us how to relax in style.

Sunday morning was spent on the computer and phone trying to find a place for the week. Jeremy found us a cabin right in Branson. It didn't feel like we were in town because it was one of many cabins in a resort. But since it was very much PRE season for Branson, we about had the place to ourselves. This worked out well because the weather was less than cooperative and this resort had an indoor pool! So we went and got new bathing suits and the kids were in the pool for part of every day that we were there. The resort also had a list of daily activities for kids. One day I took them over to learn how to make tie dye tee shirts. They enjoyed that and got a great souvenir to take home. They were the only two there, so it was a good opportunity for hands-on instruction. The activity director told me she will have about 35 kids in there once the season is in full swing. Something to be said for pre-season vacationing!

It was nice for Jeremy to come home after a long (and cold!) day of fishing to home-cooked meals, a little time for Rummikub and even to relax with one of Savannah's "spa treatments". And since we were there for the weigh-in, Emery got to go up on stage and be "interviewed". He loves to have a microphone put in his face, so when asked who his favorite fisherman was, he proudly -- and loudly -- proclaimed, "Daddy!"

There is a Bass Pro Shop in Branson, but we went 30 miles up the road to Springfield, MO, to see the "grandaddy of all Bass Pro Shops". A shrine of sorts. While we were shopping there, I told the kids I'd get them a stuffed animal. Savannah lovingly chose a sweet baby puma cub. Emery, on the other hand, decided on a long, lanky monkey whose hands and feet have Velcro. It's been lots of fun seeing it hanging from everything possible. When we got back to the cabin, Savannah discovered that the clothes she had packed for her American Girl doll fit the monkey perfectly. After a day or so, Emery started calling it "King Julian". I asked Jodi who that was and she said it was a character from the movie, Madagascar. I asked if he looked like that and she said, "You know....he kinda does!" And King Julian is still hanging around.

It was nice to have a relaxing time with the family. Jessica was unable to get the time off from work and we missed her. (She stayed home and took care of the cats.) The week ended with another long drive home. We broke this one up into two days of driving, but each one felt as long as the one going up there. But it was great and we have lots of fond memories (and tons of pictures -- as you can tell).