Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Austin--and grandsons

I'm in Austin, in a house with four adults, an almost-four-year-old, a 22 mos.and an 18 mos. Our days are pandemonium--screaming, yelling, squealing, giggling, tears--and the blessed quiet of nap time (quiet time for the oldest one and naptime for the grandmother). The boys play wonderfully well together, aside from pushing, shoving, grabbing,etc. Sawyer, the oldest, seems to delight in pushing Jacob in the swing, and Ford, the youngest, plays quietly and then suddenly belts out "Jacob!" At 6 p.m. they are fussy and hungry; by 7:30 they're hyperactive, fatigue coming out in silliness and screams; by 8 all is quiet and they're in their beds. It's a joy to see them together. And for me, it's a particular joy to get to know Sawyer and Ford better--and have them know me. At first Sawyer hung back,saying he wasn't ready to give me a hug, and Ford stared at Jordan and me curiously as though wondering who these interlopers were that were sitting in his front yard. (The fenced front yard is their playground with more than enough toys.) But then he looked at me and said, "Gaga." (That's the Austin boys name for me, while everyone else calls me Juju.) Then he looked at Jordan and said "Jojo." The ice was broken, and we were off to high good times. We don't get this kind of togetherness when the whole family is together,and while I miss the others, I value this.
In between I sneak up to the office,where I'm sleeping, to deal with emails and read on my Kindle. Megan scolded me for reading when I don't see my grandsons that often. So I'm trying to limit it.
Last night after we'd gone out for Mexican food at a riverfront restaurant, Jordan announced that after the boys were in bed, the parents were going to have an intervention with me. My first thought, of course, was "Hey, I like my white wine but I don't drink that much!" I asked if I had to move out of my house,quit my job, quit drinking. She said no, it was something good. But then when we got to it she began with, "We all love you a whole lot, but you can be controlling." I heard those as damning words, because I try so hard not to be controlling. It turns out though that ever since I turned my b'day celebration over to the kids--at their request--I've been bugging her about this person and that who knows it's my 70th b'day and wants to be included. She told her siblings I was driving her wild, and they decided to tell me so I could enjoy anticipation and she could have a littlel peace and quiet. They were in part feeling sorry that I missed Scotland and wanted to give me something to look forward to. So here I am, sort of controlling my b'day party and very excited about it.
But determined not to feel my age. When I woke up Sunday after my busy day with Maddie I was stiff and sore, I hurt and I was tired. Depression snuck in because I thought maybe I really was getting old. But the next day I was fine--and at the end of the drive to Austin I was less stiff than Jordan.Since I've been here I've done better on balance--even on uneven flagstone--and I've been free of aches and pains (well, mostly) in spite of sleeping on a mattress on the floor. I'm back to thinking it's in large part attitude.
Big on my mind: I need a writing project, and I want to find a way to market my mystery. But I'll think about that tomorrow.

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