Monday, February 29, 2016

Drenched in Two Grandchildren

I promised myself that I would never forget how joyful it is to have pre-schoolers. Nor would I forget how hard it is! We remembered the joyful part this week as we were the sole care-givers for three-year-old Zara and nine month old Dean for seven days. . But we have to admit that we forgot how totally time-consuming and demanding it is to provide for the 24/7 needs of little kids without the help of older kids! Our appreciation for parents who are willing to sacrifice so much of their lives and the daily demading needs of these cute little packages which includes a test of their patience, durability energy to care for these totally dependent little people.

Our appeciation of young mothers and young fathers has increased by about a thousand percent this week. It’s one thing to go into the homes of these little people and play with those cuties when their parents are around but it’s totally another thing to be in charge of their welfare hour by hour and even minute by minute for seven days. 

We had so much fun, but I have to admit that we are just a bit tired!  The baby was up at at 5:30-6 a.m every morning and our three year old had a cough that kept us up from about 2-5 a.m. for a couple of mornings (we took turns). After seven days we were sad/ready to turn them over to our daugther Saren and her five “helper” children for a couple of days while we flew off to a speech in Texas. Their parents will fly in from Costa Rica about the same itme as we get back from Texas and we’ll have a happy reunion with those adorable cherubs before we send them home to New York City the next morning. 

Our son Eli and his wonderful wife Julie are truly amazing parents!  Besides having two full-time pre-schoolers, they live in a four story walk-up (which for those of you who are not city-dwellers means no elevator) in the middle of Manhattan. I have written about them before as we have visited several times and have marvled at how they get those kids and their “car” (a Rolls-Royce style stroller) and two kids, not metiom their shopping purchases up those long flights of stairs to their 700 square foot apartment. Somehow they manage and we adore them for it!

I just have to post some of the fun we’ve had this week with these two exciting, creative, pizzazy, strong-willed children:

The night they arrived at our house, Zara managed to find her favorite dress-up…a Rapunzel dress…in our little play room which she slept with that night and refused to take off except to sleep and to swim for the next three days!  Despite our very best efforts, there was no way to talk her out of wearing that princess dress to church the next morning so Julie managed to put a sweater over it and off we went!

After church while we were talking to old friends in the foyer, Zara took it upon herself to do a little snow shoveling outside the front door. She mostly got the snow back on the sidewalk and lost one of her shoes in the snow in  the effort, but she was pretty proud of herself!

The parents stayed for a couple of days so the kids could acclimate to our house and their grandparents whom they hadn’t seen for a couple of months.


The next day we visited The Children’s Museum and had a grand time exploring all the fun things there!’



Navigating her way throght the foam shapes in her pincess dress.proved surprisingly successful!


Is she cute enough?


Meanwhile Dean was happy to explore anything in sight! Man we love this little fellow!


The day after the parents left, Zara and I made cookies for Max, our oldest grandson who is a missionary at the Missionary Training Center in Provo. They have a next-day delivery service to the MTC near our house so we set out to make his favorite recipe.

Always anxious to help, Zara accidently moved the lever on the electric mixer to high just as we had poured in 4 cups of flour!  Somehow she still looked like “Elsa” (aka Rapunzel) here but I looked like Olaf! There was flour everywhere!


We didn’t eat any of the dough Smile JK!


Meanwhile, GF spent a lot of time feeding Dean. I have to say that he didn’t always look this clean!


Zara was tickled to find another high chair and promptly organized this arrangement:


Zara loved the Pop Up Magic Castle Game that I had ordered from Amazon. After spinning the wheel through one game, she took over as the Queen of the Castle and had so much fun with it!




This picture below says it all about Zara. She is independent and fearless while riding her scooter through the streets of Manhattan and couldn’t care less where her mother is when she takes off in Central Park. Her strong will keeps her either thrilled or devasted, which was so fun for us to watch! Takes us back to our own eight (out of nine) strong willed children!  We love this amazing child! 


“Deanie Boy” as he is affectionatley known is also a delight! He had so much fun exploring our comparitively huge house and never got tired of it, as long as we were right by him in the room. Those big open spaces were a little scary at first.


And just look at that snow out there!  Just when it started to get ugly we were treated with a fresh coat of the beautiful snow we had missed while we were gone!


Dean got pretty brave as the week progressed and really liked jumping off the coffee table into his Grandfather’s arms!


Zara was high energy to the end….back in her Rapunzel dress. Just before we left to drop these two kids off to Saren, who has five kids and a great husband who simply adore little kids, Zara zonked off during dinner. We knew that a nap during the day meant a late night so we were worried that she wouldn’t go to sleep for a long time but she was really OUT!


Even when GF moved her to a more comfortable spot, she didn’t move a muscle!


The Looslis welcomed them with open arms and had so much fun with the for the next couple of days! Here are Saren’s instagram pictures of the fabulous cousins Isaac, Ashton and Eliza, bonding:




What an exciting week we had!  Fun and exhausting. And we just have to say:
“Hooray for parents!”  We have to admit appeciating our freedom as we flew off for a speech in Texas over the beautiful snow-covered mountains!


How fun to see this little family reunited!  With a four and half to five hour flight ahead with these two kiddos, I think I was as happy as they were for naps and Ipads!!!


It was a time to remember!


Jenny (also) said...

I'm so curious to hear who your one not "strong willed" toddler was. My guess is Josh?

R's Rue said...


Sydney said...

I love this post. My husband and I recently "drenched" ourselves in three little grand daughters while their parents went on a ski trip. Their was asthma in the night for the three year old, congestion and coughing for the one year old and bad dreams from all the coughing from her siblings for the 5 year old. Their was more than once that I woke up to additional little bodies sprawled out in our bed. They were sleeping soundly, we were not. Ha! Precious, tired times. We love our little grand daughters so very much.
I appreciate your "On the Road" radio show. I was able to listen to many of your broadcasts on the internet while visiting a daughter in DC, last week. I appreciate your work and sharing experiences that help to build strong and healthy family relationships.