Holiday weekend

My daughters haven't been adults long enough for me to be so used to their overnight visits that it feels like no big deal when they come to stay the night. It still feels special, like I'm hosting a guest, not my child.

Saturday I found myself changing sheets in the guest room for Andrea, the room that was hers for the six months she lived with us in our new house before moving to the big city to live on her own. She decided to come home for the weekend -- which was a little odd considering this is my party girl and this was a major party weekend ... but I didn't ask questions, I just prepared the guest room.

As I tucked in corners and plumped the pillows, I kept thinking about how weird it was that just 20 years ago I was prepping my baby girl for Halloween with costumes and makeup and now I'm preparing for her to be a guest in my home. It made me realize that I've not yet gotten the knack of being older, of having no trick-or-treaters in residence, of my daughters being visitors.

Halloween has never been an eagerly anticipated, grand affair in our house. We enjoyed it, of course, and we participated in the decorating and parties and trick or treating. But I never felt like it was THAT big of a deal. Now with Andie coming to visit, it felt oddly like a special holiday, like now that we were all adults -- the girls and Jim and I -- our Halloweens would be celebrated differently than in the past, with more gusto, more emphasis on family than partying. (Which, again, I find a little odd since Andrea in particular is indeed a partier!).

Andie arrived with a guest for the weekend. She'd asked in advance, and I'd said yes, but it was still a little disconcerting at first to have her bring Lyla. Her new dog. My newest canine grandbaby.

My newest canine grandbaby who created quite a stir with Mickey and Hunter.


But they all made nice relatively quickly ...

...and took off to explore the yard together.

And we took off to the movies together -- one of our favorite family activities! -- to see "Paranormal Activity." (Which Jim and I thought was much scarier than the girls did, but we've not been desensitized by the "Saw" movies and "Hostel" and 231 remakings of "Halloween.")

Then we carved pumpkins ... outside. Which we've never, ever done. But the weather, typically snowy and cold on Halloween, was incredibly warm and perfect for pumpkin-carving on the patio.

Then we roasted pumpkin seeds and waited for trick or treaters -- that never came, despite the scary lure of our pumpkin-lit porch:

So we watched scary movies in the dark and ate the Halloween candy meant for trick-or-treaters.

Then Andie went to church with us on Sunday, which always feels special, to have one or more of our kids sitting again with us in the pews of the place we've worshipped for nearly 25 years, the place where she was baptized.

And she watched the football game with Jim and Brianna then sat outside in the sun with me. An old boyfriend of hers stopped by to visit while she was in town ... and ended up staying for Sunday dinner.

Then the weekend was over. Andie packed up Lyla, hugs were shared and she headed back to the big city. Our Halloween weekend guest was gone.

Although she's still my child, Andie was indeed my guest. And it was special. And despite having no little costumed kiddos in my house or trick-or-treaters ringing my bell, this Halloween goes down in my book as one of my favorite ever.

This post has been linked to Grandparent's Say It Saturday.