Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Boys Of Summer

If you've read this blog at all you know that for the past year Jane and I have been serving at the Aurora Church of the Nazarene in Seattle as Interim Pastor. Well, that wonderful assignement ended this past Sunday. It was one of those "parting is such sweet sorrow" moments for us. The people had just totally accepted us as though we were their permanent pastor. Following the service Sunday morning they presented us with wonderful gifts and the Board said many nice things before they received a INCREDIBLE love offering for us as a parting gift. A luncheon followed. We could hardly eat for talking to people and saying our goodbyes. What totally awesome memories we will cherish from our days there.

On our way to the airport I drove over to West Seattle with Jane and Staci and baby Marian. We had a little time before our plane was to take off and we wanted to just drive around and enjoy the beauty that is Seattle and the Great Northwest.

This is where the story gets complicated. You see, Staci's sister-in-law is getting married this coming weekend. So, she and Josh and all the kids are coming to Denver for the celebration. Well, knowing that I decided to bring the two boys home with me on the plane a week ago and let them spend time with Jane and me at the cabin. What an adventure that turned out to be....all good I might add.

At the Seattle airport a week ago Sunday I got out of the car and the two boys started getting out of their car seats. And then there was the first hint of tears. Daniel started to sniffle, then whimper, then cry. Little John could have cared less. He was going to ride on the big airplane. Daniel...not so much. However, by the time the goodbyes were said and I got them to the security line he was fine. We got on the plane, row 3, and the thing took off. Soon the flight attendants were passing soft drinks down the aisle and I chose that moment to get out the surprise I had for each boy. (Did I mention they are 4 and 2?) I had a baggie for each with M&M's and a couple of Matchbox cars. Well, things were getting interesting now. It was like, "Grandpa, why didn't you tell us you had surprises?" Daniel turned to me and said, "Grandpa, I don't miss my mommy anymore." I'm sure that thrilled her.  Another 30 minutes and Frontier Airlines was passing out the warm chocolate chip cookies and life couldn't get any better.

We landed at DIA about 6:30 p.m. with Aunt Jamie and grandma there to meet us and the fun was ready to begin.

On Monday we loaded the boys into our car and drove to the cabin. They were barely out of the car before shoes were being kicked off and they were headed for the stream. Try to remember what it felt like to be young and energetic and to have a yard with a stream flowing through it. Not a raging river, just a little brook that was shallow enough for you to play in all day long without a lot of supervision. They were in heaven. The tire swing was moving gently in the breeze and grandma was soon in the house preparing some lunch.

Government workers
The next day we discovered that the county was repaving the road in front of our house. How exciting! Is there anything more wonderful for small boys than big trucks? We had to stop everything and head to the road to watch.
"Hold the lunch, there's a big truck up there."

Each night they headed up to the loft to sleep in the king sized bed and they went to sleep immediately after grandma finished reading the story. No crying, no whimpering. They were EXHAUSTED. They had run barefoot through the grass and the stream all day long. They had "washed" their car and driven it up and down the drive. They had ridden tricycles and built forts and carried sand from the creek into the house.

Well, on Saturday, with them safely in the care of the other grandma (Kathy Zaker) Jane and I left for Seattle for our final Sunday there. That's when all the kindness was expressed to us.

Then we drove to West Seattle and to the airport, but this time with Staci and with baby Marian Jane. Again we sat on row 3 and our only granddaughter (four grandsons) slept like....well, like a baby, all the way to Denver.

Now all of our family is back in Colorado except for one. Josh, a Major in the Air Force, flies in Thursday. And to make things even more exciting my brother and his wife are riding their Harley in on Friday morning for the long weekend.

So, Sunday night (the wedding that I mentioned is on Saturday afternoon) we plan to have both daughters, both sons-in-law, all five grandchildren plus my brother and his wife PLUS my cousin Scott and his wife sitting on our patio for a casual dinner.

What fun!

Nothing better than being a grandpa. "Papa, can I have pop?"

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