A squealing good time

Hudson woke up about 7:50 this morning,  and before anything else I decided we might as well feed Rook, the chocolate lab.   Rook gets fed at 8 and 5 and his stomach is equipped  with an alarm clock in it, so he was already giving me the eye.   So off Hudson and I went, down the hall, with Rook eagerly going on ahead.   Before we even reached the 90 degree turn in the hall that ends in the laundry room, Hudson was shrieking and squealing in my ear.   He LOVES to watch Rook eat.    Who knew something like that would give a baby such pleasure and result in such noises of glee?   Too bad the entire process from beginning to end takes about 90 seconds.

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Observation skills

It comes to mind, over the past few days, that my Grammie observations differ from the Mommy ones.    During my time here with Hudson, I realize that my only responsibility is Hudson.   Well, I am also taking care of the dog and two cats, but they are easy.     That gives me unlimited amounts of time to just watch Hudson:   watch him play, watch him put little pieces of fresh banana or ham, or turkey into his mouth, watch him laugh and scream as he stands by the screen door while it’s raining outside. I don’t have to share my time with a job, or a husband (because Grandpa let me come alone), or yardwork.   I have only Hudson on which to spend my time.    Truly, it is time well spent.

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Obligation or Bonus?

I’ve been a Labor and Delivery nurse for 34 years.  When I graduated from nursing school in 1976, I was 4 months pregnant with Hudson’s daddy.   During those years of helping women bring their precious little gifts from God into the world, I have had the occasion to observe some pretty interesting family dynamics. 

The one I want to relate here is about grandbabies and their grandmothers.    I can’t tell you how many women I have been around, including personal friends and co-workers, who evidently feel it is their kids’ obligation to make them grandmothers.   I have heard statements like “it’s about time they made me a grandma,” and “I told my kids they’d better get busy and make me a grandma.”   Now I wanted to be a grandma as much as anybody, but long before my children were out of grade school decided that if THEY decided to have children, thus making me a grandma, it was a bonus.    As they grew older, we had this discussion.    I made it very clear that it was their choice, not mine, whether or not they would become parents.  Having a baby to make your own mother happy is about the worst reason in  the world, in my opinion.

Because that’s what happens first:   they become parents.    Only after that happens, grandparents happen.

My daughter-in-law, Hudson’s Mommy, and I are very close.   She has known from the day they became serious as a couple that there was going to be no pressure from us about  where they choose to live, what they choose to do as careers, and a number of other things, but also whether they would choose OR NOT to become parents.   

Lucky for me, they wanted very much to have a family, and worked hard at it.  It was no bed of roses, and maybe that is part of why Hudson is so very precious to us.   I suspect it’s only a small part, however, because every time I see that sweet face with that big grin, my heart melts…how could it not?

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TGIF or any day with Hudson

Hudson and I have had a wonderful Friday.   It started about 6:45 after he’d slept 11 hours (BTW, he does that most every night.)  We cuddled for a bit before his breakfast of cereal  and a bottle, and then got busy playing.    It’s hard to believe how focused he can be on his toys.   It’s common for him to play with one thing for 10-15 minutes.    I know grown men who don’t have an attention span that long.

When we found out we were going to grandparents, a lot of my friends asked me if I was going to be Grandma, Grannie, Nana, Grandmother, or what.   My own grandmothers were known as Grandma Nutsch and Grandma Lull.  I knew that Nana was out, right off.  That one has just never reached out and made me feel all warm and fuzzy.   Grandmother is far too formal and I am far too casual.    I don’t like Grannie, either, because it makes think of someone really old and really wrinkley…and while I plan on getting really old, but I hope to avoid the really wrinkley part.  So that left Grandma or Grammie.   I am leaning towards Grammie, but honestly, I think Hudson will choose.  

Being Grammie or Grandma or whatever is a big job, and I pledged to do double duty when Hudson’s other Grandma, Michelle, died unexpectedly just a month before he was born.    It became clear that it was left to me to do double the grandma duty and I’m doing my best.

It will require travel, since we live in Washington State and Hudson lives with Mommy and Daddy in Bakersfield.   But you know, that’s what they make jet fuel for and I don’t give a fig about my carbon footprint.

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Just Hudson and Grammie

Today is a big day.   Mommy and Daddy left for their vacation, so now it’s just Hudson and Grammie, and Rook, the dog.   I assured Mommy some time ago that Hudson will fare far better during their time apart that she will.   And so, I suggested she put him down for his nap this morning, and then they could leave, so as not to see a fussy baby.  It was perfect.   The upside for me, and there are several, is that I am learning to use my new Droid X to send little videos and photos to Mommy and Daddy.

This little man, who will be one year old on 10-30-2010, is the easiest baby to care for.   He plays with his toys, most of the time by himself; sometimes, though, he has to tolerate Grammie playing along, too.    For naps or bedtime, once  he’s in his crib, with his pacifier (actually several, so that if he loses one, he can find another quickly and easily) and usually in less than 5 minutes, he’s sounds asleep.

Mommy and Daddy decided when he was about 2 months old that when the time came, it would be normal table food, appropriately mashed, for him.   And this kid, less than one year old, loves bananas, applesauce, sweet potatoes, carrots, broccoli (okay, he’ll eat broccoli, but it’s not a favorite), pears, turkey, ham, cheese, and smoked salmon.   Oh, and yogurt..he loves yogurt! He has cereal in the morning, then for lunch and dinner, will have a meat or fish, vegetable, and fruit or yogurt.   Mommy prepares the fruits and veggies by mashing then, then freezing them in ice cube trays, and one cube is perfect for one meal.     There’s a big stash in the freezer for Grammie to choose from.

It’s quite warm out today, and our usual noontime walk will be postponed until after supper.   The heat is not good for either Hudson or Grammie…and Grammie would probably become the crankiest!

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Hello world!

This is a brand new endeavor for me.   I had the idea, only this afternoon, that I should write a blog and that it should be called “There’s A Place Called Grandma Heaven.”  I know this is true because I am in Grandma Heaven right now, caring for my grandbaby while his parents go on vacation.   In time I  will learn how to do this properly, and in time, I will change the title of my blog to the above-mentioned brilliant title, but for now, I will start simply.  I will organize my thoughts of happenings and observances over the past year, since our grandbaby was born.  Maybe I will start a year ago, and maybe I will incorporate thoughts from the past year into the current writings.  I just don’t know quite yet.  But I do know this:   I need to write these thoughts down, not so much for the reader or even for the writer, but for Hudson, who one day will read them and know me better.

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