Continued from First Flight!
Our daughter had not told her two boys that Mimi (my wife’s grandmother name) and Granddaddy were coming for a visit. So, when we walked up onto the porch and opened the door, our oldest grandson, who was already home from school, was quite excited to see us in person for the first time in over a year.
Once inside, as my mother always used to say, we got the hugging started. It was such a wonderful feeling to experience a shared embrace from our daughter, son-in-law, and grandson for the first time in so many months.
And has become our tradition upon my arrival, my daughter soon offered me a locally brewed IPA to celebrate our visit.
While awaiting the arrival of our other grandson from his pre-school, I fell into one of my normal routines of helping out with the dishes.
To greet our other grandson, my wife and I positioned ourselves in two chairs in the living room to surprise him as well. I had my phone camera ready to capture the look on his face.
At first it seemed he might have thought his eyes were playing a trick on him but after a few more steps inside, the look of surprise was quickly replaced by a smile of seeing us in person.
After another round of hugs, it was off to check into our close-by rental…
…and a playground for some fun scooter time before dinner.
I have written before how often on these trips, my way of helping them out is to do some projects, the biggest of which was the time I tiled their kitchen countertop. But since it had been so long since our last visit, we had decided that this would be a non-project trip. However, that all changed when about a week before our arrival, their youngest son figured out how to climb out of his baby bed during nap time and unexpectedly join his dad during one of his work video conferences. Suddenly, the boys longer term sleeping arrangements needed to be addressed sooner rather than later.
So, the next morning after breakfast and the boys went off to school/pre-school, the projects began.
First up was to disassemble our oldest son’s bed and reassemble it downstairs in the younger boy’s bedroom to replace his crib.
Then it was off to pick up the rental truck to haul all the project supplies.
Only problem was the pick-up truck we had reserved was not available due to damage the day before and so their substitute equipment was a 20’ moving truck.
My daughter said it showed my true love for them by being willing to drive this behemoth over the 50-mile round trip.
Since we had the extra space in the truck, my wife and I encouraged our daughter to get a few more items while we were at our favorite flat-box furniture store but it still nowhere near filled the truck.
With the youngest son’s bed completed, the next order of business was to assemble the bunk beds in our oldest grandson’s room so he would have a place to sleep that night.
The idea of getting bunkbeds had been the longer-term solution for allowing the boys to sleep in the same room, once the youngest was old enough to do so.
Once our oldest grandson came in for the unveiling, he was quite excited to climb up to the top bunk for his new place of slumber.
Over the next few days, I additionally assembled (with some help) new porch furniture…
…and two new dining room chairs.
And we still found time between projects to have some fun taking the boys to a park with a zipline…
…and play equipment.
Saturday afternoon, my wife and I took the two boys off on an adventure while my daughter and son-in-law had their first date out since the beginning of the pandemic. Our plans to take them to a park were thwarted by the cold and rainy weather but we able to get them a treat and to enjoy one of their favorite activities, riding through the car wash, where the ominous “octopus” came down to scrub the car clean.
And on Sunday, the last day of our visit, the afternoon weather was nice enough for all six of us to enjoy a nice stroll around the neighborhood before our last meal together, delicious pizza from a nearby wood-fired pizza restaurant.
It was with much sadness that we said our goodbyes that night to return to our rental knowing our visit had passed way too quickly. But not before a few more hugs.
On our flights home the next day, I reflected on the fact that it was a wonderful visit but just the beginning for many more to come!