Last night we had dinner at Sarah and Miles’, the kids swam and played, and Ally and Elle conspired to get Mom/Aunt Sarah to consent to letting Ally spend the night.  Aidan came home with us and we played games till bedtime.  This morning the girls got up and swam some more, then Elle had an appointment so I went to get Ally and Jack (Beck is at day camp all week).

The kids kept Jack amused, we all had lunch including Grandpa’s home made cookies (yum), then Aidan and Grandpa went to the movies while Ally and I stayed home with Jack, who needed a nap.  While he was asleep, Ally and I played a long game of Rack-o and she watched a little TV, then we drove Jack home after he woke up.

Rich made spaghetti for dinner and the kids swam.  I reminded Aidan about his Kahn Academy math work and his reading for the public library summer challenge, which made Ally interested in both.  After showers, they both read books and did some math problems before bed.  Ally was really into it and asked to go to the library tomorrow to pick up some more chapter books. That does my heart good.

We are having girls’ day tomorrow since the guys got to do something today.  We are picking up Elle in the morning and going to see Despicable Me 3 because it’s the only kids’ movie playing and Ally hasn’t seen it yet.  I wasn’t that crazy about it the first time but I guess I am seeing it again, and Elle is going for the second time so she can see it with Ally.  🙂  Elle has a tennis lesson, so after we take her home we will go to the library and look for some books on our list that we made tonight.

I have a little bit of a scratchy throat–sure hope I am not coming down with something!

Let the Summer Fun Continue

Yesterday we drove  halfway to meet Susan and pick up Aidan and Ally. For once, the traffic was not bad and we made good time.  Great to see Susan and chat for a little bit before heading back to Dallas.  After we got to the house and unloaded, we went over to Sarah’s so they could see their cousins.  They always have a big time together!  Sarah is feeling better, though still a little weak.  Hopefully she will be 100% soon!

Kid Stuff

My daughter Sarah has been having some medical issues so we’ve helped with the kids a bit lately. She ended up having her appendix out on Friday! Hopefully she will be feeling better soon.  Elle has been away at camp for the past week but we enjoyed having some time with Beck and Jack.  Beck and I played a few games of checkers and then he wanted to learn how to play chess so Grandpa took over.  Although a few people in my life have tried to teach me chess before, I never really learned the game.  I think it’s great that Beck is interested.  And my 66 cent bowling set from the thrift store was a big hit with both boys–anything to make noise and knock things around, right?!  🙂

Miles and Beck went to get Elle at camp on Saturday so I stayed with Sarah to help with Jack and make sure she didn’t need anything.  Elle had a fabulous time at camp and we were all happy to see her after a week away!

Tomorrow we are driving halfway to pick up Aidan and Ally so the summer fun continues!

Hot Days of Summer

We took Elle, Beck and Jack to see “Despicable Me 3,” then Beck and Jack came to our house to swim for awhile when Elle went on to soccer practice.  They loved the movie, though I have to admit I am not a big fan of animated shows and some are definitely more lame than others.  🙂   The boys had a blast in the pool and Grandpa got in with them for a little bit while Ajax and I watched from the sidelines.

This photo popped up as my Facebook “memory” for the day on the 13th, taken in 2009.  Yes, in Unalaska I often wore hoodies and hats in July!  My, how things have changed!


I’ve been wanting some outdoor furniture for the front porch and kept looking at sets but didn’t want to spend the money. Imagine my delight when Sarah and Bonnie and their families bought this cute ensemble for Rich and me for our birthdays.  I think I will enjoy it a little more around September and October, though!


More May Happenings

The local grandkids gave me an insulated drinking glass with straw for Mother’s Day, “because you love your tea!”  They always tease me about carrying a glass of tea with me any time I come to their house, and they know it’s my drink of choice.  🙂  And to top it off, it says “Gigi.”  I love it.  Mother’s Day was pretty quiet; Elle had a soccer tournament so we kept the boys for part of the day.  My other daughters called and posted sweet notes on Facebook, and I talked with my mom.  Eventually these holidays start feeling a little forced and I run out of things to say or gifts to give, but I’m grateful for the three girls who made me a mother and the eight little darlings who make me a grandmother.  And I’m thankful for my mom who is still going strong at 86.  She’s the perfect example of someone who loves people, loves life, and loves learning new things. She’ll talk to anyone, and try (almost) anything once.    She’s interested in everything she reads about or hears about and the next thing you know, she’s signed up for a class or an activity so she can get in on it too. I get my “joiner” tendencies from her and I hope I will be as busy and involved when I am 80-something.   She’s open- minded, open-hearted, the keeper of family history, and full of funny stories. She’s a fabulous mom and the coolest grandmother ever to her many grandkids and great-grandkids.  My girls have all become wonderful mothers themselves and I love to see them with their kids.  It’s funny that sometimes I feel like I should still be their age–and where did this grandmotherly woman come from?  🙂

Ally has been playing softball and we had been wanting to watch but hadn’t been able to work it out till recently.  She had a great time last year and did a good job as her team’s catcher so she couldn’t wait for the season to start again. This year she moved up to the next age level and the competition is a LOT harder!  Oh, my goodness, those 10 year olds are already doing “fast-pitch” softball! I don’t think I could have hit one of those balls!  Great fun watching Ally and her friends!

Meanwhile, back in Dallas, it’s getting hot enough to swim, we’re continuing with baseball (Beck) and soccer (Elle), working in the garden, doing chores around the house, volunteering, and taking advantage of all the free things that the city of Dallas offers.  The other day Rich and I went to a Senior Safety Summit sponsored by the Police Department.  We only stayed for the morning session but who can beat free breakfast, free lunch, information from lots of agencies and programs, and some safety tips from the police?

Oh, Busy March (Part Two)

We took the kids back home after Spring Break and then Rich’s cousin Mary Ethel and her husband Roger came to spend the night with us.  They had been in Houston while on a road trip from their home in California so we were quite excited to get a phone call saying they were coming this way as they headed home.  I met Mary Ethel and Roger several years ago when we stayed at their home for a couple of nights and we hit it off right away.  They are friendly and fun, great conversationalists, smart and funny, and tell great family stories about Rich’s parents, siblings and cousins.  This visit did not disappoint and we had a wonderful time catching up. We went out for Mexican food and they taught us a new dice game which we played while chatting and laughing.  They also showed us a game on the iPad called “The Akinator,” which they thought the grandkids would love.  (And they do!)

Too soon they had to pack up and go but we hope to see them in California later in the summer.


And we had two more birthdays in March, my daughter Bonnie’s on the 30th and grandson Aidan’s on the 31st.

I’m so proud to be Bonnie’s mom and proud of who she is.  We always have great talks about lots of issues and topics; she has such a kind heart and a caring spirit toward those who don’t have it easy in life; she is fun and funny and tells some *hilarious* stories; she’s smart and determined, a hard worker, and a wonderful mom to some fabulous little ones. I’m glad we live closer and can visit more often. We love her big time!

Aidan is our oldest grandchild and the first boy in the family after I only had daughters.  None of us really knew what to do with a boy when he came along!  Happy 14th (14th!!) birthday, Aidan! I can’t believe he is getting so grown up! He’s  great at motocross, basketball, putting things together and figuring things out, beating us at Rack-o and Mexican Train and getting “The Big Norway;” he’s so  kind to his younger cousins who adore him, he works hard at school and is admired by his teachers, he’s funny and fun to hang out with, one of our best road trip travel partners, and we love having him come stay with us. We’re hoping he never gets to be a surly teenager who doesn’t want to be with his old grandparents!  🙂 We love you like crazy, Aidan!

And rounding out the month, a few babysitting gigs, fun and games with the Dallas crew, flowers blooming in our front yard, and kitty cats….


Oh, Busy March! (Part One)

Our friends Kyle and Ingrid were in from France so we got together with them, Kyle’s mom Karen (my dear friend) and sister Kaci for a nice brunch in Fort Worth before they got on a plane back to Europe.  Fun to catch up with all!


Next it was granddaughter Ally’s 10th birthday.  Hard to believe this girl has hit double digits!  Ally is very sociable, friendly to all and makes friends wherever she goes, silly and sassy,  loves reading, basketball and softball, playing board games, cooking with Grandpa, doing arts and crafts, AND she is one of our best travel partners.  We love her so!


We enjoyed Open House at Elle and Beck’s school.  Fun to see all that they are doing!

Aidan and Ally came for Spring Break and we had a blast, as always.   They are such good kids. We went on a hike, played lots of games, went to the movies, cooked, tried to swim (still too cold!), played with the cats, had ice cream, worked in the garden, met up with Sarah’s kids to go to Altitude (a place with trampolines, etc), set up an apartment for a refugee man from Afghanistan,  and celebrated birthdays (Ally’s late and Aidan’s coming up at the end of the month).  Oh, yeah, and Uncle David came to spend the night with us on his way back to Amarillo!