Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Nana's Visit

Are you tired of hearing about recent family visits? Tired of seeing hundreds of pics with my kids smiling and being showered with love from grandparents? If so, this post is not for you.

This past weekend we entertained visiting family again: Nana came! She arrived near dinnertime on Thursday evening and was greeted by three excited little people. She, in turn, greeted them with gifts and treats.
I'm not sure if I should blame the "Do you have a present for me?" question from my five-year old on Nana or not. I mean, since she insists on fun gifts each time she visits, my child was technically just innocently asking a question based on previous example and not being rude, right?
Micah wasted no time in getting Nana on the floor to play games...
... and Grady Lee wasted no time in getting Nana to assemble a 100-piece puzzle while he dutifully looked on and watched a baseball game over her shoulder.
Friday morning was casual schoolwork at home before going to our weekly Spanish class. Since Nana grew up in Chile and is fluent in Spanish, she was interested to see what her grandsons were learning.
Before class, she entertained Annalyse in the community playroom and kept up with that fast-crawling but slow-tottering girl.
No pictures from Spanish class, but Nana was delighted when the boys learned to say Abuela and ran to her to offer a hug and kiss!
After time in the classroom, it was time for recess! Off to the local park for some time to run and climb.
Not too bad for a Nana that just turned 60... still taking the turns in the slide like she was 30!
I think one of the best reasons for having family visit, is because they are more than happy to entertain my kids and I can attack my to-do list or simply lay down and read. I can be hands-off for an hour and not feel guilty or wonder if my kids are still alive.

Nana played several rounds of Sequence, Yahtzee, and Ants in the Pants, and even brought a fun Fall craft for the boys to make.
After dinner Friday evening, we enjoyed a brisk evening walk by the lake. While all of us, minus Grady Lee, were standing on the dock admiring the sun setting, I noticed he was busy jamming acorns in his pockets as fast as possible. 
"There are hundreds and thousands, maybe even millions, of acorns here! I need to collect as many a I can and bring them home to make a special Fall time decoration!" Bless his heart. (No really, bless his heart.)
The sun was setting fast but we enjoyed a short walk before the sun finally set and it was too dark to explore. "Do you have a flashlight? What if there is a dinosaur hiding in the trees?" Micah asked, in all seriousness. Have no fear: Grady led the way with the light of his phone.
Saturday morning was soccer! The boys were thrilled that Nana was there to watch them play. And Annalyse, she was just thrilled that someone was willing to hold her and offer her Cheerio's the entire time.
Micah shows some fancy footwork and dribbles the soccer ball...
... he passes it to his teammate and they take off for the goal.
Meanwhile, Grady and his friend on the sidelines are 100% focused on the intense excitement happening... between each other. Soccer game? What soccer game?
And, when it's Grady's turn to run and play he scores several goals...
... gets lots of cheers and clapping from the adoring fans...
... but all the while stays focused on the game and his offensive skills.
Meanwhile, Micah is enjoying the attention and fun on the sidelines. Wait a minute, wasn't Grady just offering a shoulder to this same sweet girl? Are my boys vying for attention from the same girl already?! Oh dear.
The happy Nana, the thirsty and sweaty boys, and the cutest little cheerleader!
After soccer, we drove to a sort-of-local Fall Festival at an apple orchard. The crowds by the picnic area were heavy so we opted to redneck it and eat in the parking lot. The boys didn't mind and Grady was happy to not lug the cooler to the picnic area and back.
We watched some apple cider being made and a blacksmith pounding tools...
... and gave some (darling!) goats and sheep and piggies lots of pets and scratches and snacks.
Despite my warning that hay and straw would make bare legs itch, both boys jumped and rolled while we waited for our turn on the hayride around the orchard.
After an eye roll from a woman sitting across from our family, she agreed to take our picture. Thanks, Lady, for the picture... even though it's been cropped and still contains more coverage of the leaves than it does our family.
Seriously, this Daddy cannot say no to this little girl. She is right where she wants to be: wrapped around his pinky!
A hayride around the orchard with a brief stop at a pig pen where we received an invitation to return in a couple of weeks for a pulled pork BBQ. No, I'm not joking.
When the hayride ended, it was time to choose some pumpkins. The boys wandered and inspected each one...
... and brought back a couple they thought were just the right size for Annalyse...
... but she had other ideas and insisted on this one instead.
After watching and petting and jumping and riding and picking, it was time for eating! Nothing beats a warm, cinnamon apple donut and cold, fresh cider.
I think Annalyse enjoyed the apple chips, but I'm not entirely sure since each one seemed to end up on the ground at some point.
How about a live bluegrass band while taking a break and snacking? "There sure are a lot of guitars that sound funny," Micah commented.
After a busy morning and afternoon, I was ready for a nap, but Nana and the kids were not. Benefit reminder of visiting family: they play with the kids when I want to rest! Perfect.
Nana treated us to dinner at Q'Doba that evening (thanks again!) and when Sunday morning dawned it was time to give hugs and say goodbye already. A short weekend visit with lots of happy memories.


  1. I am loving all the family visit stories--what wonderful memories for your kids!!!

  2. Oh Sarah - I wouldn't blame them a bit - Nana's are good for that. What a wonderful weekend - I'm thinking about apple picking again - for the doughnuts - I mean apples :)

  3. Aw, what a SWEET visit! And take advantage of every nap & quiet reading time that you can...mamas get few breaks, so don't feel bad taking them when you have the opportunity! I love all your pics & the one in shadows at the park at sunset is so cute! As are the pics of the boys with their little "girlfriend". A-dorable!
    And I think Rebecca has the right idea about the donuts!

  4. Girl...your house is like a regular bed and breakfast!!! You have had so many wonderful guests over the last few weeks. I know you love having family in, and what a blessing it is to spend time with loved ones! LOVED all the pics.