Tuesday, June 28, 2016

About the Mouse - Or Not

What a week - well, four days, which alternately felt like ten and then one.  Mickey was quite the host to Merry, Ava, Bryce and me - and roughly a million of our closest friends.  And by "closest" I mean we swapped sweat in the sweltering Florida heat and humidity.  At one point, we even went into the Enchanted Tiki Bird Hut just for the air conditioning.  If you have had the experience of being serenaded by tiki birds, you will realize just how hot it was...

Merry and I got to watch the wonder of fresh excitement starting with taking off from O'Hare.  Bryce and Ava (in first class, none the less) marveled over the Chicago skyline as we flew overhead. Even a fellow passenger commented on how much more fun the two of them made flying - seeing wonder again in what had become ordinary.

Once we arrived at Disney, there was Splash Mountain (twice), The Seven Dwarfs Mine Ride (in line twice, turned away the first time - the evil queen's fault, I'm sure), The Haunted Mansion (the graveyard made the wait bearable), Soarin' (twice and my personal favorite), Peter Pan (could have done without the 70 minute 'build up' to the 5 minute ride), Space Mountain (twice with increasing bravado), Tomorrowland Speedway (once for the four of us, another time for the mini drivers among us.  They drove both times, the tall ones among us got smarter the second time around.), rockets and teacups, princesses and swimming pools.  If that seemed like an endless run-on sentence, imagine what our feet felt like at the end of each day.  Coincidentally, the end of each day was also the start of the next - we never got to bed before midnight.

But before we could even consider bedding down,there was the electric parade and light show and fireworks - and a slow walk down Main Street with the aforementioned million before returning to our room for a round of much needed showers.  The final night, Merry sacrificed two hours of sitting on a curb to save the perfect viewing area for the evening's spectacular.  I was charged with taking munchkins to It's a Small World.  Who got the better end of that deal?

Friday evening as Bryce and I sat in the Orlando airport munching on such fine dining as can be found there, he asked me a question that I was actually preparing to ask him - "What was your favorite part of the week, Granma?"  Without a moment's hesitation, I said it was spending the time with three people I love so much.  His answer was just as quick - talking and giggling in bed after the lights went out.

Be still, my heart.  After all the hype and all the walking and all the line standing and all the photo ops, it wasn't about the mouse at all.  I would do it all again just for that shared revelation.  You're a good mouse, Mickey, as rodents go.  But you pale in comparison to spending precious time with precious people.  With much love to my traveling companions, it certainly is a Wonderful World!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

We're off to see the Wizard - the one with Ears!

It's here!!!  The time is now!!!!  Bring on the Mouse!!!!  If by chance you are reading this in the p.m., we will be looking down on you from the friendly skies, winging our way to Orlando.  Bryce and I, bestie Merry and rent-a-kid Ava are headed to Disney!!!  There has been much anticipation of this trip.  The countdown started with two digits, the first being a six.  And now it's finally here!

Last year Merry and I took Bryce and Ava to an amusement and water park in Iowa.  As a result, Bryce loves Iowa and can't think of a better place to go.  Of course, he has heard about Disney, but can it really be that much better?  Oh boy!!!  There might be nothing better for a Granma than blowing the mind of another generation.

"Do we get to take an airplane?"  I have a five hour maximum for driving, so a flight is in order.

"Do they have roller coasters?"  Tower of Terror, anyone?  (Not that I really call that a roller coaster.  More of a bungee jump with a seat belt.)

I've only been to Disney once - with my bestie.  It was awesome!  To see Cinderella's castle all lit up for the night, and wait in line forever for the micro-thrill of a lifetime, and witness the scope of the world's largest souvenir stand.  And now, I get to see it all again!  But this time through the eyes of a child - a couple of children, actually, that I love very much.  Pictures to follow on Facebook - and no doubt in a future blog, too.

Watch out Mouse!  Here we come!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Happy Birthday to Her!

I missed her first - and second.  As a matter of fact, I missed her third, fourth and fifth birthdays, too.  But I was there for the sixth, and the seventh arrives later this week!  My eldest and first grandgirlie!  Miss Bella!!!

Bella can light up any room.  Actually, she can boss a room around pretty effectively, too - though quite nicely, I might add.  She LOVES little cousins!  And they follow her like the pied piper that she is!  She is pink and purple and lipstick and Barbies.  In other words, a foreigner in these parts and a welcome one.

Then again, she is also the master at going cross-eyed, and she certainly doesn't shy away from water fights and goopy stuff and being one of the boys. (I''m so disappointed I can't find the picture of my cross-eyed beauty!  It does exist!)

You know the hardest - and best - part about having a grandgirlie like Bella?  I have to figure out what to get her for her birthday.  So far, I've figured out nothing with wheels, or superheros, or guns.  What does that leave?  I think I need a trip to Toys-R-Us - and Fast!!!

I love you, Bella!  Happy Birthday!

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

As they see the World!

When I was in high school - back in the day of horse and buggy - I excelled at math and English and music.  At least that's the credits I give myself looking back.  However, I took the weeniest science courses I could to skate by with the minimum.  When I got to college and discovered I had to take two lab science classes, I did not deviate from my previous strategy, taking Weather/Climate and Astronomy.  I never cared for science.  That gene, apparently, went to my elder brother who became a doctor.  So far, this has nothing to do with grandbabies, but trust me, it will...

Aidan (4) and Josiah (3) are precociously starting with their homeschooling!  Guess who their science teacher is!!!  Yep, the science superstar - Granma!  Fear not, their medical or rocket science futures are intact, as long as I switch subjects before their knowledge of quarks and leptons surpasses mine.  Of course, my knowledge only extends as far as spelling.  Let's not talk about my spelling prowess...

So I've been teaching the boys about how the earth rotates and how the moon reflects the sun.  We are making progress with experiments involving a mirror and a flashlight, taking turns being either the sun or the moon (or the director of the experiment - resulting in being "blinded by the light").  From week to week, I'm always so thrilled when something appears to have "stuck."  (What's that word, Josiah? - "Rotate"!)  How long does it take the Earth to rotate, Aidan?  One day!  Good answers!

So just when I'm starting to think maybe I missed my calling...  Reality comes calling.

So, Aidan, where is the sun?

It's up in space.  (Check!)

Where is the moon?

It's up in space, too.  (On a roll!)  Hey, Granma, where is the Earth?

This the Earth.  We are standing on it.

No, Granma, that's the grass.  The Earth is round and it's up in space.

Oh, my. 
Aidan, do you know what Q-U-A-R-K spells?