A number of years back there was a TV-series about a sweet mountain family . . . the Waltons. The family was poor and the series depicted an era when the nation was rather poor as well. The Waltons were a large family with three generations under one roof. Each weekly program showed the family in some sort of struggle and taught an important value-lesson about life, choices, and behavior. Each week’s program closed with the lanterns being dimmed and the family saying: Grandpa: Good night, John Boy John Boy: Good night, Grandpa and Grandma and that would go on for a while as all family members chimed in and wished each other sweet dreams as the camera faded away.
New Year’s Eve in our house, as we were trying to go to turn the lights off and go to sleep, the conversation went like this: Chris: “Good night Nana and Pappy,” as he started up the stairs. Ali: “Can I play with someone’s iPad, please?” Abi: “Hey Dad, please bring my book ‘Paw Patrol’ up here so I can read some.” We ain’t the Waltons, but we sure are entertaining. I recently read that grandparents try to relay some family history to young grandchildren, but soon learn they are not much interested. However, years later when the grandparents have gone on to the next chapter of life and the grandchildren are grown, they really wish they had listened and learned about the family’s history. That is part of what I am trying to do with my musings in this blog.
Ali and Abi: This transpired on New Year’s Eve 2017. You girls had spent about a week with us at the family home in Aransas Pass. The house had been seriously damaged by Hurricane Harvey and we had just completed the repairs, so we all felt we were in a completely new place. We had watched the New Year come in and were headed off to bed as the above-described conversation occurred. The comical thing about it was that we had just taken the tablet from Ali and shooed you off to bed, and at that time in her young life Abi could not read anything except her name . . . Abi (age five—recently turned) had no interest in learning to read. For her, the alphabet consisted of three letters – A B I. Abi, when I would question you about learning to read, you would shrug your little shoulders and say, “Pappy, I will learn to read later.” You were such a sweet, sassy little gal. Did y’all even know you captured my heart? I delighted in being your Pappy. I would hold Abi and say, “I love being your grandpa.” Abi would smile sweetly and reply, “I love being you grandpa, too!” You were at an age where you loved to perform for Nana and Pappy and would ask me to “underduce” you before you came out on stage. Your stage names were: Crystal, Elsa, and Anna, and you “just flew in from”: Oklahoma or sometimes Louisiana. Another one of your mispronounced words was “hanentizer.” While in the store with Nana, you saw the hand sanitizer and asked Nana to please buy you some “hanentizer.”
And Ali, you had grown into a real beauty . . . charming and sophisticated. You spent some time rolling your eyes and taking deep sighs at your little sister’s being sassy and seeking to be the center of attention. You loved playing on the iPad and it wasn’t long after being awakened in the morning before you were asking for one. We, of course, wanted to limit that playing time, as we wanted your attention . . . and you were zoned-out from the world around you while on the iPad. However, you were very helpful when asked to help with every type of chore!
Happy New Year!