Oh, yes we did: Bracelets with boys

Oh, yes we did: Bracelets with boys

This past weekend, Jim and I kicked off fall with a quick visit to see our grandsons in the desert, as I’d mentioned here was on the calendar. During the visit, I did indeed make bracelets with the boys, just as Declan had requested.

Thing is, despite his enthusiasm upon seeing the paracord bracelet kit I’d brought in my Grandma Bag, Declan bowed out of the bracelet making in mere minutes. Which worked out for the best as bracelet-making was quite a feat for a five-year-old. Well, a feat for this grandma — who’s 10 times that and more — as well.

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The difference one hundred ninety-nine days makes

The difference one hundred ninety-nine days makes

Up until this past weekend, my husband and I last saw our three desert-dwelling grandsons one hundred and ninety-nine days ago. At that time, we flew to their house to celebrate their birthdays — all of which are in June — a few weeks early. At that time, they looked like this:

Last weekend Jim and I flew to their house to celebrate Christmas with them — a few weeks early. In the one hundred and ninety-nine days since our visit in May, Brayden, Camden, and Declan have grown by leaps and bounds — in stature, maturity, conversational prowess, game-playing ability, and more.

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Pool time with PawDad

My grandsons have a swimming pool in the back yard of their home in the desert. Though I've had the pleasure of splishing and splashing with them in it a time or two, Jim — who due to job demands hasn't been able to visit the boys as often as I — last saw the pool when it was in progress and merely a big ol' hole in the ground.

Jim's perspective on the pool changed this past Sunday.

My husband and I took a quick trip south to see the boys and their parents over the weekend, and Jim, er, PawDad finally got to join the boys in their pool. And in their hot tub, too.

pool time with PawDad

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More than grandkids: What else I found in the desert

When I visit my grandsons in the desert, I take lots and lots of photos of them.

Bubby, Mac, and Jak may be my primary focus, but the flora and fauna of the relatively foreign land in which my grandkiddos live get my camera (iPhone and otherwise) clicking now and again, too.

Here are a few of my non-grandchild shots from my recent desert visit, all taken in my daughter's front and back yards, all things I've never found in my own front or back yards... or anywhere in Colorado, for that matter:

desert flower

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Desert oasis: Boys and their buds

Contrary to what many might believe, residents of the desert must be water worshippers of a most dedicated degree. For when temperatures hover around triple digits for days on end, staying cool in the pool with your pals is pretty much a matter of survival — yet loads of fun, too, as you can see.

outdoor swimming pool

boys at the pool

Today's fill-in-the-blank:

The most enjoyable way to stay cool is ________________.

17 things I'll do this week

I'm flying to the desert today to spend a week with my grandsons. Here are...

17 things I'll do this week:
(in no particular order — except for No. 1)

1. Swelter in the desert heat.

2. Hug Bubby.

bubby 

3. Cool down with my grandsons at the water park.

4. Hug Mac.

mac 

5. Jump with my grandsons at the indoor trampoline center (Kegels, don't fail me now!).

6. Hug Megan.

7. Sit with Bubby on one side and Mac on the other while enjoying Despicable Me 2 at the theater.

8. Collect more artwork from my grandsons for hanging on my refrigerator.

grandchild art 

9. Take a picture or two (thousand).

10. Worry about scorpions and lizards crossing my path — or getting in my bed.

11. Watch Bubby jump from the diving board.

12. Be proud of Mac, who is reportedly potty-trained.

a boy and his toys

13. Teach Bubby how to play Froggy Boogie.

14. Think of my partner in grandparenting, who couldn't visit our grandsons with me (and find time to Facetime him with the boys).

15. Read Dr. Seuss' Bartholomew and the Oobleck and make oobleck.

ookblek

16. Hug Bubby and Mac again... and again and again.

boys at the library 

17. Be one heckuva happy grandma!

Today's question:

What will you do this week?

Grandma's ultimate challenge

I cannot lie: The last couple days caring for my grandsons around the clock has been a bit of a challenge. Why? Because Baby Mac has got to be the most strong-willed bundle of energy I have ever come across.

Baby Mac's steadfast determination to keep up with brother Bubby—who will be four years old in June, compared to Baby Mac turning one year old the same month—has kept me hopping, to say the least. He thinks he should be able to do ab-so-lute-ly everything his brother does, despite lacking not only physical ability but also the common sense to know such feats at his age are sheer lunacy. And when I prevent him from risking life and limb in pursuit of his goal, Baby Mac throws fits reminiscent of my biggest battles with my daughters during their teen years.

Every once in a while, though, Baby Mac chooses to imitate his brother in something that isn't dangerous. For example, after watching Bubby place the ball on his T-ball stand several times, Baby Mac decided to give it a try himself with his own ball. This was the result:

Baby Mac's enthusiasm and obvious pride in himself for succeeding at the task at hand is exactly how I will feel, possibly even how I will babble, once I manage my own task at hand—that of making sure the little wild child survives safe and sound while his mom and dad are away.

Today's question:

What are your challenges—and successes!—of the past week?