Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Camp Gramdmaw Revisited

Mom and Dad took a trip in celebration of Dad's birthday! Happy 40th J! Where are you going for your birthday?


So on the day before Thanksgiving, just as I was finishing up some last minute house cleaning (silly Grandma) Fin, Olive and Natalicious along with dogs, Frieda and Angus, came bursting through my front door!

All of them beaming! Like this!

This time they even brought Swimmy Two with them. That would be Fin’s fish. Yes there was a Swimming One and after the trip down in the car, Erin was anticipating a Swimming Three, but Two survived the weekend.

They were sure excited to be staying for 4 whole nights!
Olive needs a hat for all that long hair.

Visiting Boomer and Annie!
Okay, what's next?

Thanksgiving Dinner at the Kid's Counter. Cheers!

Getting ready to go to the landfill with Grampa...
...and ALL the dogs!

I'm Scrunchie!

NO kid! I'm Scrunchie!

We had lots of running-around fun out by the pond!

and riding turtles!

Neighbor kids come to play too.

Time to get serious!

Target practice with the B B gun! Boys will be boys and so will Grampas...but Grandma is the best shot!

Meanwhile, the girls were busy building sand castles!

Oops, I just remembered to warn them about what Sophie, the cat, does on that sandpile. YUCK!

Helping Grampa!

Climbing fences!

Hay stacks are good for hours of fun on a cloudy day. Seriously! Nothing is more fun than a hay bale fort!

Could these reactions be a reflection on Olive's driving?

At Camp, we don't spend much time in the house.

Time to go home comes way too soon. Now who will eat all those left over miniature marshmallows from our hot cocoa? I think Grandma can handle that!

We'll sure miss these cute little faces!

Until next time!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Day Ten - Wednesday, Our last day.

These pictures were taken yesterday. We are trying to get a shot similar to the one we took on day one.

Nona wasn't into it.

Well, our last morning together didn't start out as planned. I got up to let Frieda, their dog, back inside cuz she barks a lot and loud at the horses and although Grampa was just leaving for work, the rest of us had a late night and were still trying to sleep. I was planning on going back to bed. So I was groggy, with morning mouth and look-in' fine!

As soon as I got to the kitchen, the phone rang and I picked it up. It was really early, like 6:30 am or around there, I think.

It was a lady from Wisconson asking for some advice on her horse's hooves. That's not a call I ever mind taking, so we talked for about 45 minutes. And while I was on the phone with her, another call came through and my Blackberry was buzzing.

I got two more calls regarding a blog (not mine) with a post that was about a horse we rescued, Spencer. These were not comfortable calls, but I had to deal with them and I was on the phone with both gals for about 45 minutes, each! Then, due to those calls, I had to go to my computer to send a few emails, etc.

So this didn't turn out to be the nice easy morning I had planned to get ready for the kids mom and dad to show up and possibly all of us could go to lunch or dinner together and talk about their vacation and the fun we had together.

Nope, because at some point during the second call, the kids had all gotten out of bed. I was able to get them some cereal, which of course, they didn't eat, and put the Nim's Island movie in my laptop computer for viewing on the coffee table. Apples were preferred over cereal. That's okay.

After everything had settled down, I got a shower taken (with Nona so I could keep an eye on her) and the other two got dressed and finished watching the movie.

Then their mom and dad called to say they were on their way, exciting!! And right after that the house keeper, who helps me out once a month, rang the door bell and Fin opened it while I was standing in the hallway, partially dressed.

The house was suffering the affects of 3 kids entertaining themselves the entire morning while I had been distracted. (And I had been keeping up with the house so well too:0( So she was kind enough to leave and come back later so I could get the place picked up.

BLAMMO! What a morning! I got the kids suitcases packed and the house ready to be cleaned, after nine days of kids, kids, kids, in one hour and twenty minutes! Kind of like hitting the fast-forward button on the video they were watching, I was one Zipping-around Granny!

The kids spent a bit of time outside while I was cleaning up and Fin found a tiny frog. He was pretty proud of his find and took it out to the pond to grow up and start a frogily.

Then suddenly Mom and Dad arrive!! There are hugs and kisses all around and gifts for everyone! All the kids were so excited to see mom and dad and I think they were ready to go home.

We watched some videos I took of the kids that I hadn't loaded on the blog and we got a kick out of some of the funny, and smart, things they did. We got a chance to visit and Erin looks awesome and her eyes match her pretty Hawiian sweatshirt exactly.

Bye Bye!

I will certainly miss them all and...
Little Scrunchie misses them too. She has been wondering around the house looking for them. Olive named Scrunchie when we got her about a year ago - after a little toy stuffed dog that she keeps with her at all times. I should taken a picture of Olive's toy dog and Scrunchie together. They are identical. That would have been cute.

You know, it sure seemed like our time together was a series of melt downs, tears, angry moments, kid fights, and disgust with grandma's rules. Not to mention panic attacks, many messes to clean up, frantic searches for blankies, and exercises in anger management for Granny.

But there were way more smiles, lots of kid-giggles, sharing, running, playing and splashing in the pool, as well as horse (and donkey) grooming and riding, a bit of shopping, singing in the car, and naps in the carseats. Oh and lots of lottery scratch tickets!

We ate a lot and dined out and in and I think they will not want to see another Peanut Butter Bar as long as they live. Or mom will have to buy some at Costco cuz they all have an addiction to them now.

There were seven (7) dogs here as well for 10 days. That was a lot of poop around the back yard to watch out for. But to Grampa's credit, as a veteran poop scooper, not one landmine was hit by a single civilian.

Well, it's getting late. Time for bed. But I have to add this one last picture. The kids got postcards from their mom and dad yesterday and that was exciting, and reminded my Little Bittys how much they were missing Mom and Dad.

I loved having you with me here at Camp Grandma! Let's do it again, next year! Or you know, the year after:0)

We love you all so much,

Grandma! And Grandpa too!

Day Nine - Tuesday

With our time together winding down, we mostly concentrated on doing some things that the kids hadn't gotten a chance to do. They wanted to ride a real horse!

So after a lunch of corn dogs and lemonade wine, (not really - they just loved drinking out of wine glasses!) we got little Jake out.
Jake is a 3 year old Quarab who is a sweet-natured, little guy and he likes kids and it's good for him to get kids up on his back so when his real training starts, it won't be a big deal. It's win-win-win to put kids on him.
They got a bit impatient with me because I can't just walk in and grab a horse and saddle it up. It does require a bit more preparation than that and we had a few chores to take care of first.

They all went out to say good bye to the other horses...

...and helped me toss them some hay.

Olive gave Neenah some last good-bye scratches, which Neen loved. You can tell from Neen's upper lip sticking out that Olive found the best ichy spot of all. This little horse really likes kids, but maybe that's because she's a kid herself.

When we were finally ready to go get Jake, we headed for the gate and Nona and Olive beat me there. But instead of stopping at the gate, Nona, who was right next to Olive, dropped down and crawled under the gate. Pop! She was on the other side! Just like that!

I saw it, but wasn't close so I yelled at Olive to grab her as she was going under, but Olive didn't get what I suddenly was going berserk over, and Nona was just too quick anyways.

I got to the gate just as she found herself standing toe to toe with Annie, the mini-donkey. And next to Jake. Thank goodness it was them and not one of the others, although, horses tend to be careful with kids no matter how much bigger the horse is. Still, things happen, we know all too well. (I have a story about Rich's grandson I'll have to tell you on another blog.)

Anyways, that happened in the few seconds and Jake was just reaching over to take a taste of Nona’s hair when I grabbed her. Horses love nibbling on kid’s hair for some reason!

Getting ready to ride. Fin is really a natural and not afraid. He should be taking riding lessons!
Fin and Olive were taking each other's picture. They did a pretty good job!
Olive likes to ride too, but she is a little frightened about sitting on such a tall horse. The donkeys are way less scary.

Little Rider on his way out of the gate after one last ride.

At the end of the day, the kids and I went to Walmart and got the movie, Nim's Island to watch in the morning while waiting for mom and dad to come. We got a couple things for each of them, but the best thing I could have gotten them, (If I had only known 9 days ago!) was a toy cell phone!

A $3 toy and they had the greatest fun with them. Fin had been asking for an old cell phone to play with, but I didn't have any, so when he spotted them in the store, I could not say no.

The littlest sister was still up for awhile after we got home, but she soon crashed and Olive and Fin and I sat together in my recliner, eating ice-cream sandwiches and watching the last half of Ferris Bueller's Day off. They liked that movie a lot. And I had to answer lots of questions.

When it was finally bed time. Those two kids were out in about 30 seconds. We'd had a really good day and an evening full of giggles and hugs.

When I told them their mom and dad were coming tomorrow to get them. They whined! "Do we have to leave so soon."

"I'm sorry kids, you do. Your mom and dad miss you so much and I'll miss you when you go, but Granny is pooped!"


Good Night Granny!"

Monday, August 18, 2008

Day Eight - Monday

The weather took a turn after an impressive thunder storm this morning, followed by lots of rain! Since Grandpa had to go back to work, we were on our own today. We got going right off! Breakfast, dressed, shoes on, but when it was time for Granny to shower and dress, all hell broke loose…a little bit.

Then we got everything back under control. And I had to go in the rain to do my chores - feed the cat and toss some hay to the horses. That took several trips, due to minor melt downs and little tussles back at the house. (Did somebody mention duck tape?)

On the last trip from barn to house, I neglected to do one last very important thing. Want to guess what that was? I'll fill you in as I go.

So we loaded up in the Landcruiser and headed off for Costco! On the way there, I asked, “Hey, is anyone hungry for some lunch?”
I am!
Me too!
The littlest one had conked out.

So we pulled-into Best Buffet. (and Grandpa didn’t think I could handle that sort of dining alone.) They kids did GREAT! They were very selective in their choices. Jello, Fruit, Jello, and anything that was good covered with sweet and sour sauce, Jello and pastries! Then we had ice cream cones for dessert!

We know how to eat! We washed up and were about to leave for Costco when I noticed I had messages on my cell. (The ringer isn’t functioning properly. Operator error.)

It was Grandpa calling to tell me that he’d been leaving messages (along with everyone in our neighborhood) because all of the horses had gotten out! (Did you guess that the last thing I forgot was closing the gate?)

The sheriff had arrived (minus the posse) and was heading the varmints off at the pass, using his cruiser as a road block! And all the neighbors had come out to help with the round up. From all the messages it sounded like a very exciting time.

Well, we all got up and headed for home with one stressed out granny at the wheel. I was imagining animals running willy-nilly all over Tarnation and the new draft horse, Spencer, (not a real people horse) running all over the neighborhood, scared witless and trying to rip anyone who got near him a new one.

Then about half way home, I got my own wits about me, pulled over and called one of our awesome neighbors to see just how bad things were. Jim said, not to worry. All the horses, which were narrowed down to Little Jake and 2 mini mules, the ones out on an adventure, but they had made it about a ½ mile down the road. The two donkeys were still in the yard and it didn’t sound like the two draft horses got out at all. (At least I don't think they did. I'll have to get the clarified.) But what a relief to find out they were all contained again!

So I turned around and we headed back to town to finish up our errands.

When we got home, all the horses seemed safe and sound, but boy I sure had lots of message on my cell and my home phone. I want to thank all my neighbors who helped out there.

We got the little garage sale bike out and did some practicing on that. Then it was cinnamon toast for dinner and bed. Fin complained that he normally gets much more food that than for dinner. I complained that I was too pooped to cook a bunch of food, clean up the mess and toss most the food out. Which has been a normal dinner-time for them. Plus, we all had a really big lunch...darn it...and they actually did eat some healthy stuff.

The Pool Girl stopped in to clean since we couldn't swim today. They went to bed early tonight because Grandma is exhausted. Funny how that works. But they were exhausted too - it took about 3 minutes for all to fall sound asleep and this is what they are doing now!

More tomorrow!