Friday, January 03, 2014

The end of family time

I had a bit more family time than I expected--even after we returned from our week in Santa Fe. Jacob was with me all week, from Monday until this afternoon, while his parents were out of town. I thought we had a good time until I asked him today and he said no, but I hope he was joking. One thing I realized this week was that I'm not a helicopter grandmom--I don't have time to hover over him, which means he spends far more time on the iPad and iPhone than he should. It used to be TV but he rarely watches that now. We often exist at separate ends of the house and are both content.
Last night, thought, he built an elaborate "house" by my desk and insisted he was spending the night there. I suggested the floor was hard but he could not be dissuaded. So I brought extra blankets, and the oversize doll pillow from the playroom, tucked him in and said goodnight.
About six a.m. I felt this pat on my shoulder--really a nudge. He wanted me to move over so he could get in my bed, where he promptly slept until ten in the morning. He told me later he hadn't all night. I suggested he probably had but was restless and it didn't seem like it. Anyway, above is where he started out and to the right is where he ended up.
We did other things, though he isn't thrilled by the grocery store or errands. We had fondue for New Year's Eve and company he likes for New Years dinner with black-eyed peas and ham. He had two long and good play dates with a kind family who took him to the Main Event (whatever that is). We read, though that's not his favorite activity and it's slow going. I think he's a classic example of too much digital entertainment. We laughed at silly things and worried over what he wanted for lunch, until he said, "Pretend  you're making me an after-school snack." I did it and it worked--nothing trumps Honey Crisp apple slices with hazelnut peanut butter on them.
Sophie delighted in having him, dogged his every step, sat on the bed next to him while he did Minecraft. When he came to crawl into my bed, she settled herself on the dog bed beside me, though she rarely graces me with her presence at night, preferring the chair in my office. Today I caught her growling out the window at a squirrel who was taunting her deliberately. I always think with her shaggy coat she looks a bit like a gorilla when she does this--or some less kind of monkey.
It's Friday night, and Sophie and I both find the house a bit empty. Sure it was more work to have him and I had to build my schedule around him, but I loved every minute of it. I loved staring at him in the morning when he was peacefully sleeping and looked three or four instead of a grown-up seven. I loved laughing at his antics and groaning over his jokes. I loved listening to him read to me, often punctuated by "How do you say this?" and he'd spell a word.
Vacation isn't quite over. I'm giving myself till Monday. Then I'll start my routine--what yoga I can do with my foot in that boot, regular writing, and dealing with my so-called career. But then Monday is Twelfth Night, and we usually have the neighbors for supper and a traditional burning of the greens.
Life is really really good.


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