It's nearly impossible for me to answer anyone's simple question with a simple sentence or two.
It's also nearly impossible for me to use a few pictures in my post - when I have so many.
I have had Ellie, Luke and Andrew with me today - beginning at around 11:00 am and their parents will return tomorrow close to the same time.... I think.
I find the most effective posts to be those of few words and a few choice photos. I can't do it - but I'm going to try.
DISCLAIMER: I'm not the grandmother this post will make me appear to be. I like the idea of it - and I thought I would be this grandmother - it's who I wanted to be - or maybe HOW I wanted to be. I just always thought that by the time I was a grandmother there would be very few distractions in my life. That I would have nothing to do but be a very very very fun, creative grandmother.
So, I've known in advance that I would have E, L, and A today and tomorrow. I remember not ever being glad if my parents were gone - no matter how much I loved my grandmother. So - I just wanted this to be fun for them - no regrets - and I wanted to make some memories. I really don't have all 3 often. I can't remember when I've had all 3 of them with their Mom and Dad gone.
First, before they came I looked up recipes for play dough. I used to make that all the time for my girls. I found the recipes but didn't have the ingredients. It takes huge amounts of cream of tarter and salt and some call for cornstarch. There are different recipes. I didn't have what I needed.
So - they got here at 11ish. Ann left while I was boiling the water for Mac n Cheese. Also, Andrew arrived incredibly sleepy - so he went down for a nap almost immediately.
Ellie was already in pretend mode - so I continued the idea - and became the waitress. She loved it. Luke was game. Notice what Ellie and I refer to as "Apple Wine" - in the stemware. Straight out of my china cabinet. As I served it Luke seemed a bit nervous. He asked, "Is it wine?". I whispered in his ear, "Apple Juice, we're just pretending".
It was their idea to toast. They "clinked their glasses" several times.
and from lunch they moved into pretending in the kitchen, while I cleaned up - and Ellie suggested that they make small cakes and decorate them. To her great surprise I went along with it and pulled out my oversized cupcake tins. We made the cupcakes from scratch - and while they "rested", I cleaned that up and prepared the icing. Luke chose blue icing. Ellie struggled between Pink and Purple - so, being in a very indulgent, extravagant mood, I gave her both.
Ellie remained intent....
Luke began to "cut up" with the camera
And they both tasted a LOT.
(Bear in mind, they had access to 3 bowls of icing, and double and triple and quadruple dipping and licking abounded - my thoughts were, "HAVE AT IT!" - I was earning major grandmother points all the while)
From behind the camera I said to them, as they licked a lot,
"I want you both to pay attention to how your tummies feel. All of that licking is going to start to make your tummy hurt - so you need to quit when you feel uncomfortable".
I gave them a glass of water to wash it down.
Luke was the first to push away.
Somewhere in the midst of all of that Andrew had waked up.
He meandered around the kitchen while I cleaned and assisted.
Here are their creations
I couldn't resist these photo ops
From there they went into the Living Room and watched a bit of Channel 7.
That's all I get that time of day.
Luke begged me, after I cleaned, to please help him build a house with Leggos.
I did, finally - bless him - he waited and waited.
and together he and Ellie worked on something
And then the sun came out so we went outside
and played in the dirt.
We set up in the front yard. It seemed drier in front, after so much rain.
Ann knows this, Steve knows it, all who know Ellie know it,
nothing is ever simple with her. There always has to be more - take it all up several notches -
so she wanted me to pull out these lawn chairs as well, and she went inside to bring out a few animals and books. It was some kind of a yard scene she was setting up. I wasn't sure.
Her brothers were enjoying it. I could only imagine how it looked to others passing by.
As it drew closer to Charlie's time to come home,
Luke and I somehow evolved into a pretend baseball game.
I was walking across the yard with Andrew on my hip - the large, deep front yard - and Luke began running so hard toward me. I pretended I was applauding him and the next thing I know, we're in a pretend baseball game. I would throw an imaginary ball, he would hit a home run, I would cheer him from base to base and he'd get into home plate safe every time. Ellie got in on it, cheering him from her "lawn chair", and finally became a player too. When Charlie arrived we were whooping and hollering and anyone would think there was a baseball game going on. I just kept thinking, "they're running all that sugar off".
But imagine as we're in baseball mindset, Charlie gets out of the car with all of this authentic baseball gear for Luke!
and Charlie's affirming smile as Luke models it
Andrew enjoyed throwing the baseball
This super duper stuff came from the son of one of Charlie's assistants.
He plays great little league baseball in Huntsville and has all the gear for it.
He has been generous enough to pass down some of the things he's outgrown.
It thrills Luke and he wanted to sleep, tonight, in those batting gloves.
I just couldn't let him. His hands would be so sweaty and yukky.
From outside we came in for baths and dinner.
Scrambled Eggs, Grits, Toast and Apple Juice...
and their cupcakes.