Grandparenting

We’re staying at my aunt and uncle’s house tonight (though they are out of town), and I found myself noticing how baby-oriented everything here seems to be now.

No daughters living in their individual rooms, no young nieces and nephews and adult siblings and parents coming to visit all the time anymore… just their daughters visiting occasionally with their babies and tiny children.

And then I realized that a lot of their traveling is either to visit the out-of-town grandchildren or to go on vacation with the daughters and grandchildren.

And so, essentially, their lives focus greatly around their grandchildren (they’re retired, you see…. my aunt and uncle…, so they don’t do other work.)… they do house edits on their various (three) houses, and rotate between them all reasonably regularly, and then they vacation (aka grandchildren).

How interesting that must be.

How wonderful that must be… to be able to focus as much time and effort as you want on the grandchildren, and to help your children with them all you want…

Perhaps that is one of the goals people have in life – live well enough and work well enough to be free and available for your children and their children, once the grandchildren come around.

And they do it while living quite well, too… not bad at all…

Yes… perhaps this can be a sort of goal for me, too… work hard, so the kids can have everything beneficial and lovely in their lives, and so they end up pursuing the same for their children, and then be super active and available in the lives of their children while they do the hard work like you did…

It somehow seems unbalanced or unfair or, at least, like it could be done way better… but I haven’t a better solution at the moment, so I’ll keep it in mind and think on it a while in the coming day and weeks and, possibly, years…

Hmm…

Post-a-day 2019

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Uninvited overnight guest

Not the messages you want to be sending anyone at three in the morning:

Not great news: 80% certain that there is an animal in the attic right now. I went out front to look on the wall, and saw no creature there (just some old vines). There is a hole in the roof by the porch, though, and I can hear it going crazy right now.

It sounds like it is genuinely destroying boards inside the wall. I hear things falling down the wall.

And yet, I just sent them.

And it is terrifying me just a little bit, because this creature sounds totally capable of breaking through the walls within definitely a few hours…. so I’m nervous to go to sleep, and risk having a creature fully in the house when I awaken with a jolt at its entry.

……. 😦

Post-a-day 2019

Baby talk

At 35, you’re considered geriatric.(!)

I’m not gonna be geriatric.

I stopped by to visit a friend at her extra job today, so I could pick up her key to go play with her cat and dog.

We started with talk about Christmas presents and CrossFit, and ended up on careers and finances, houses and babies, all within about three minutes of chatting.

We joked about how her husband (currently boyfriend) who is finishing medical school right now, will be super poor for the next several years, and so she wants to work and save as much as possible now, so she can buy a house and have babies at the latest by 30.

Thus the glorious comment at the start of this… gotta love the oddities that drive us all forward in life. ;P

Post-a-day 2018

The insignificant significant thought

Thought for the day, which can be answered easily by either asking a friend of mine or by doing some very quick research: I wonder when houses switched from having air vents be on the floor to having them be on the ceiling, and why – sure, cool air falls, but heat still rises…, so it makes sense (in a way) to have heat vents on the floor and cool vents on the ceiling, instead of just one location for both.

Post-a-day 2018

Art Alive

After brunch today, we went to the Cherryhurst House in Houston for its current in-house exhibit by Dan Havel and Dean Ruck.  It is called “Ripple”, and it is wonderful.  I spoke with Dean Ruck while inside the exhibit/house (you’ll see what I mean in a minute), and learned a bit about how his day job provides him ample knowledge on how to take on such a task safely and successfully.  When I first entered the house, I felt instantly that it was just like the vortex-y black-hole-sucking-itself-inward house I had seen years and years ago on Montrose Boulevard in Houston, though also totally different.  (Obviously, that was my own description of it.  The project was apparently called “Inversion”.  Very appropriately named, of course.)  I found out that, of course, the same artists had done that project as well as this one.

Anyway, the one today, Ripple, was great.  Go.  See.  It.  !!!!

And there was even real quiche to enjoy as part of the opening celebration of the exhibit, which, alongside the perfect-volumed music and delicious beverages, made really quite stupendous slightly rainy afternoon.

How’d you like to walk in to this through the front door of a house?
(Well, you can right now!  Go check it out with an easy reservation at Cherryhurst House.  Seriously.  It’s well worth the visit.)

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A few views within the house, though the bottom left is a photo I took through a hole in the wall, while standing outside the house.

 

P.S. I guess it was all the woodwork we had seen, but my mom and I called up my cousin (as she followed us in her own car) on the way home from the exhibit, so she could participate on speaker phone with our sing-a-long to “Heaven on Their Minds” from Jesus Christ Superstar.  He specifically references Jesus’s possible future of being a carpenter, the point at saying which is one of the best parts of the song musically.

Post-a-day 2018

Moms and being young at heart

My mom came home late tonight, and walked into my room with a surprise for me.  Bop It Extreme (R) with newly replaced batteries.  I asked if she was teasing me, because it was actually just going to make some absurd sound after sitting for over a decade, but she declared that she had found it today and had put in new batteries specifically because she recalled that I had liked the game.

I showed her how I always held it, told her about the sounds for scoring, and convinced her to play the group version with me, passing it back and forth together.  We were both laughing like little kids.  It was fabulous.

Afterward, we began discussing family activities for our family open house the Saturday before Christmas, while we have family all in town.  The main topic of this discussion was cooked decorating.  As my mom listed off the number of dog houses, campers, trains, houses, sweaters, and ninjas she had, we couldn’t contain our growing smiles.  She ended with, “and a partridge in a pear tree,” and we both laughed while she figured out what she actually had not yet listed (there is no partridge and no pear tree).  I said that it sounded more like a “The dog, in the camper, with the nunchucks,” kind of scenario.  She argued that the dog goes in the doghouse, though, but then declared that that is why the dog is in the doghouse – because he was the one in the camper with the nunchucks…

Can you tell we are young at heart?  I sure love it.  😀

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Post-a-day 2017

A compliment to remember

About a year or two ago (though, I think it was two years ago), I received one of the most memorable compliments I have ever been given.  I was reminded of it today, as my mom and I drove around in the sunny daylight that was following our storm so nicely.  With all of the rain and flooding, many people have pulled out their trucks and boats, and gone to the rescue of those in need of water transportation in areas that formerly were roads (and which, I suppose, likely still are, just beneath all that water now).  For this reason, I was reminded of a particular friend of mine who has a boat.  (Or, at least, he did have a boat when we last were in touch.  Currently, I’m not so sure, because we simply haven’t been much in touch since I moved to Japan.)

This particular friend was a childhood friend.  In fact, he was one of the neighborhood kids. I secretly – or so I thought – had crushes on him and his brothers when we were all little, and we all would play together all along the street, the whole lot of kids.  Anyway, as everyone moved off to college and parents moved off the street, a lot of us rather lost touch.  Here in there, though, we each would see others briefly in life.  About two years ago, this happened for me with this particular friend and his brothers.

We were at a country-western bar/dance club in Houston, and I recognized them.  Sure, they were all massive men compared to the last time I had seen them, when they were all possibly in college.  Big and strong, burly men was an easy way to describe the guys who stood before me in this bar.  I was amazed, though delighted – I guess scrawny little boys can grow up to be big, strong men, after all. 😛

It was as I was talking with one of them that the memorable compliment came.  He said to me simply, “You’re gorgeous.”  And he said it multiple times.  I’m not sure how many times exactly, but I know that it was more than once.  What really stood out about it was not so much the words (though they were amazing), as how he said them.  I can still hear it, even, it was so impactful.  He did not say them in any condescending way – ‘How unexpected that you would be gorgeous,’ – or as though he were hitting on me – ‘Hey, let’s go to my place, gorgeous.’  He was simply stating something he believed, and earnestly, with feeling.  It reminded me of how girlfriends (true ones, not the fake kind) might talk to the girlfriend who has just found the perfect dress for something, and is thrilled, or who is all dressed up for a big date or presentation or her wedding – there is no jealousy or dishonesty, but pure love and honesty in the declaration of her being gorgeous in that dress.  He wasn’t being sleazy, but truly gentleman-like, and it was amazing. It really was.

And that was it.

Because of this brief interaction I had with this friend, he has remained in my regular thoughts these past couple-ish years.  Every so often, I am reminded of him, and I am grateful for him, and I wonder how he is doing (and I usually get distracted by something or other before I am able to send him any kind of message to check in, but I occasionally manage it).  This weekend especially, I have wondered how he is doing, over and over again, and I finally managed, after however many days this storm has been, to check in with him.  It was brief, but I made contact and found out that he and his family are doing okay.  They all hold special places in my heart, because of their various roles in my childhood, but he has an especially dear one, thanks to his beautiful compliment, whenever that was.

Post-a-day 2017