Tonight, in honor of my little Gram, I fried our eggs in the bacon grease. A rather unhealthy homage, for sure, but somehow I had to do it. I don't care how long she's gone, I love my Gram beyond. She was the bees knees. She played UNO and Tiddlywinks and taught me how to "shade" even in coloring books. She got down on the floor and gamed and built with me and told me about her two "dolls" from childhood that were made of blocks: "Puker" and "Gagger." I knew that was funny as a kid, but not sure I completely understood how hysterical that really was. She and Great-Aunt Irene would play with them. Puker and Gagger. Ha! Gram was the youngest of 10 so you know there were some boys in there. Ahem.
This afternoon, my parents brought me a card she wrote me as a little child. I would have scanned it, but I don't know how to use the current scanner. (I know, I know, but Gram would understand) It said, "Dear Pal, I guess I don't have to tell you how much I love you, but think I'd better. Thank you for being my teacher in those printing lessons. As yet guess I have not done to [sic] well. (with wobbly printing) LOVe Gra/A M."
Here she is getting married to my handsome (paternal) grandpa:
Grandpa Milo's family was from Norway and I can't stop thinking about the nut job that just took all those lives in Oslo and Utoya Island and wishing the media would stop referring to him as a Christian, right-winged fundamentalist or what-have-you. He is not any sort of Christian, he is anti-Muslim. 'Nuff said. I hope they lock him up, but I hope he gets help.
Sometimes I feel like I need a little help. My eldest threw a ridONKulous tantrum today over me not having the lunch available that he preferred. It would have been bad enough, but he did it with my Mama and Daddy here. Mind you, they don't judge me or him. Truly I have the most amazing and supportive parents. I wish I had understood 20 years ago how fabulous they were. So I can only hope that Cal will "get it" someday too. Future daughter-in-law, I'm so sorry if I never taught him to pick up his wet towel or his underwear. I was too busy trying to teach him to speak respectfully to women and not to expect to be totally catered to. I hope it paid off. If it didn't, I am sorry he duped you with his good looks and charm. I'd say "sense of humor" but if he's still all about bodily functions and the word "stupid" then I am going to guess that is likely not what drew you in.
My middle had his fist to my throat today. (Truly, that sounds worse than it was. I mean, it was naughty but he's six. He wasn't choking me or punching me. He was mad. He just probably WANTED to choke and punch me.) That said, he did reign it in without actually touching me and later he apologized. There is PROGRESS. And the neighbor boys fight too and sometimes ignore their mama or lose their temper. It's not just me. We just have to stay on these boys to turn them into gentlemen. Right? (Please say "right.")
In spite of these kinds of days, I love my boys (and my gal) to bits. They are wearing me down, giving me wrinkles and gray hair and, as proved by last night, causing me to grind my teeth in my sleep to the point of exhausting jaw and teeth pain. God give me strength to keep loving them all through whatever they throw at me. I had a great example and I threw some stuff, so I do believe we'll make it. If we don't, just take me out of the padded cell and straight jacket at least for holidays, okay?
Gigi is the best, sweetest, goofiest dog ever. I adore her. I want another one, but just like her. One of my neighbors (and friends), whose boys are also pals of my boys, just got THE MOST ADORABLE puppy. Kind of like this (I totally stole this image from a website so I apologize if I've done something I shouldn't), only smaller still:
I could eat her up. She is the softest thing ever. I am getting her (the neighbor's) boys on the bus this year, so I think I will be asking to "borrow" the dog once in awhile too.
Gigi has another new neighborhood friend that we've been sort of dog sitting lately. A neighbor that goes to our church and recently had a baby. They were having trouble getting Layna enough exercise and were, originally, looking to give the dog away as they were feeling so overwhelmed. But we've been taking her beautiful black shepherd self here and there to give them a break and will watch her for the weekend in a couple weeks so they can take the baby to meet her grandpa. I like to help people. And, I like dogs.
The weekend we have the dog, we have to figure out what to do with both pups while we travel to my folks (not long. 1.5 hours) for a picnic with some of my mom's relatives from Sweden. Kinda cool. Never met them. May never see them again, but it's pretty neat. Wonder what they will think of us showing up with three wild kiddos and a couple dogs. Awesome. I can only hope someone tries to throw a tantrum like today to really complete the "American stereotype." :-) Granted, I don't plan on drinking any Bud Light or eating McDonalds, so maybe we're okay!
I need to go put #2 and #3 to bed. Cal is at his end-of-season baseball picnic with Daddy. We made it to both the boys' end of season games and it was fun as kites to see Cal and his buddy Zach make a great play at first base and see how much he's learned this year. Tate was voted "Outstanding Hitter" for his team. I don't know whether they will stick to baseball or not, but I love that they are doing it now and would pick it over any sport for kids their age. Not sure Ellie is interested though, so maybe she will have to go another route when she's ready. Maybe gymnastics? Not dance, though she's a natural. Sorry Kor, I just can't do it. ;-)
I am putting off bedtime and tidying up, but it needs to be done. End of story? My kids are naughty, but fabulous. My dog is fabulous, but sometimes naughty. My family is just fabulous. Friends? Let's make the make the most of the few weeks before we're back to the school-year grind.