Tuesday, August 12, 2008

A birthday to remember and other things

Saturday, August 9, was my birthday and it was a birthday that I will long remember. Of course, it wasn't as memorable as Joel's birthday when he was on television.

A couple of months ago, my daughter asked us if we would keep our grandchildren for that day since she and her husband had been invited to an out of town wedding. We agreed because the bride had been my daughter's best friend in college. So, I knew hubby and I would be spending my birthday with our four grandchildren ages 8 years to 9 months.

A couple of weeks before the day, my daughter informed us that the two year old had been invited to a pool party and it was our responsibility to take the three oldest children to the party. Since the guest of honor would be three on her birthday, most of the guests were three year olds. I absolutely hate swimming so I had to dig out the bathing suit which I hadn't seen since I bought it a few years ago. Hoping it would still fit, I put it on since I needed to get in the pool with the two year old. Fortunately, he was wearing floaties on each arm so I wouldn't need to brush up on my swimming skills for a rescue.

Well, Friday night I was given my last minute instructions about the pool party as well as post pool party cleanup. All seemed to be going smoothly and then came Saturday morning with a whole new set of crises. My daughter's air conditioner stopped working and it looked like it wouldn't be repaired until Monday morning.

So, instead of us taking the children to their house after the party, we brought all four to our house for baths and shampoos. Since we'd never had all four over at one time, we had to figure out who would sleep where. That problem was finally settled and the children slept well until about 1 am when the 9 month old woke up screaming and wouldn't go back to sleep again so we had to call Mommy to come pick her up.

After she left, we went back to bed but during the night, the electricity went off and didn't return for a couple of hours. Needless to say, hubby and I didn't get much sleep that night. The next morning, my daughter came over and told us that there had been a really bad accident up the street from her house at 2 am. A car had hit a light pole and, since she lives in our neighborhood, that explained why our lights went out. We thought the driver had been killed but we later found out that he had miraculously survived.

When Monday came, the air conditioner still wasn't fixed and wouldn't be fixed until Tuesday. My three oldest grandchildren slept at my house Saturday through Tuesday and were there for most of each day. I went back to work Tuesday and the air conditioner was finally fixed. The children went back home sadly since they enjoyed staying at our house. Toys that were strewn all over our family room were picked up and we could finally walk without fear of stepping on something. Life returned to normal.

As grandparents, we've made the decision that we want to be involved in the lives of our grandchildren. It saddens me to hear young mothers say that their children's grandparents aren't involved in their lives. I don't believe our responsibility ends when we raise our own children. Having so many children at our house when we've adapted to quiet was difficult and required major adjustments but I want to be a positive influence in my grandchildren's lives. My daughter said when the children got back to their house, they complained the first day because they wanted to be at our house. What an awesome privilege it is to share in the lives of our grandchildren and to build memories with them that hopefully will inspire and encourage them.

Anyway, I know I owe some of you emails and I'm waaay behind on everyone's blogs. I'm playing catch up now so, if I owe you an email, I haven't forgotten. It may be a few days before I'm caught up but I will catch up. I know this post is long and I probably gave much more details than you needed to hear but I'm a storyteller and I've been known to take a short story and make it long.


Tracy Simmons said...

Happy Birthday, Aida! 39 years old, right? :-)

Aida said...

That's right, Tracy. 39+++

Thanks for the birthday wishes.

Amy said...

Thanks for sharing the story! Whew! You've had QUITE the busy last week!

I LOVED what you said here:

"My daughter said when the children got back to their house, they complained the first day because they wanted to be at our house."

That just shows how much they felt you and your husband's love and patience being poured into them!

And: "What an awesome privilege it is to share in the lives of our grandchildren and to build memories with them that hopefully will inspire and encourage them."

Very cool.

Blessings and Love,
~Amy :)

Free Spirit said...

Hey Aida,
Sounds eventful! Glad you were able to enjoy all the chaos, and I'm sure your daughter really appreciated the down time. You have some very "lucky" grandkids!!

Joel B. said...

Happy Belated Birthday big sis! I'm sure like a good grandma you cranked up We're Not Gonna Take It for the grandkids when they were there. ;)

I'm also waaaay behind on blogs and blogging. I'm just letting it go. Our blogging friends have yokes that are easy and burdens that are light. Whew...!

Aida said...

Hi Amy,

I really started this blog to explain why I'm behind in everything and it kind of took off from there. I'm glad you enjoyed my ramblings.

Aida said...

Hi Free Spirit,

My daughter always enjoys the "down time" and she's always more than happy to let us have the children.

The chaos really isn't over. Several weeks ago, we had promised my son we would help him and his wife with their one and a half year old son this week-end so there's another grandbaby to take care of.

Also, school starts for my daughter's two oldest this week, so we've been booked to help with the two babies so she and her hubby can go to open house two nights.

Yes. Our cup runneth over.

Aida said...

Joel, I knew there was something I'd forgotten. That definitely would have made the week-end memorable for them.

I'm very goal oriented and I always feel as though I have to finish things. As a result, I put more stress on myself than I need to. Thanks for the reminder. It really is okay not to catch up. We'll all survive if I don't.

With all I've got going on this week, I'm only going to get further behind anyway. So, you're right. I'll just have to let it go too.

Thanks for the birthday wishes, little brother.

Nicole said...

Hey Aida! Happy Birthday a couple days late!... I am so sorry. I haven't gotten over here to check out your blog so I completely missed your birthday! I am glad you still enjoyed the grandbabies even though there were problems along the way! I miss you so much and think about you always!

Big hugs!

Love, Nicki!

rob horton said...

happy belated birthday aida - i am a bit behind on all the posts in my feed-reader.


Bino M. said...

Happy belated B'day! What a way of celebrating...

amy said...


Your daughter and her family are blessed to have you and your hubby. Grandparents have a great deal of power - they can greatly enrich and bless if they choose to. How wonderful that you have chosen to be such a positive anchor for your daughter and your grandchildren (I bet your son-in-law really appreciates you too!!)You are making a huge difference for the better in their lives by being such a laid-back, go-with the flow Grandma!!

Amy (the other Amy :-))

Tina said...

Happy belated birthday, Aida!
Thanks for sharing the story. Our kids have never stayed with their paternal grandparents without us, and are rarely with my parents by themselves. You are giving your grandchildren (and their parents) a wonderful gift.

Karen (SoCal) said...

Hi Aida, I tried to wish you a happy b'day over on FBN but I couldn't remember my password (hate that ). anyway, i was thinking of you on your day. Best wishes for a belated b'day and a beautiful year in Father's AMAZING LOVE....K

Manuela said...

( i had left this on the wrong blog- below) Gosh, I do that all the time!
happy birthday! (Mine was the fifth...) you ARE a busy mama & grandma and you work too, right?
Glad you're birthday was grand! I've been doing well :)
...God is good and I'm full of hope, thanks to him. What a God!!

lydia joy said...

HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY!!! (I bet you are an awesome gramma, the kind that sits with kids on her lap in her comfy chair as pictured on the side and reads and sings to them!!!)

Aida said...

Since it’s taken me so long to respond to everyone’s birthday wishes, you can tell that I’m still trying to play catch up. If all goes well, this week-end will be quiet with minimal grandchildren responsibilities so hopefully I’ll catch up and can relax. I appreciate everyone’s good wishes.

Thank's Nicki. I miss you too. I know you’re busy too but I’m sure we’ll talk again really soon.

Rob, I can totally relate. As you can recall, I was late in wishing you a happy anniversary. Those were great wedding pictures you posted.

Hi Amy. Now, I have two Amys to keep up with but, after all we’ve shared together, you’re definitely not the other Amy to me. Maybe you can sign yourself Amy from Texas or something like that so I can tell you two apart.

Charlie and I believe in being involved in our grandchildren’s lives. I don’t think parents were ever meant to raise their children by themselves. My son-in-law and my daughter-in-law both appreciate our involvement.

Aida said...

Thanks, Bino. At least I was with family. It was great to be able to help my daughter out but personally I would have chosen a different way to be together.

BTW, Bino. Happy birthday to you. I hope you enjoy your day and that it’s quieter than mine was.

Aida said...

Thanks, Tina. My parents weren't involved because they lived at a distance and my in-laws just weren’t involved so my children never had the strong support of grandparents either. We’ve determined it won’t be that way with our grandchildren.

Thanks, Karen. I‘ve noticed you’ve been kind of quiet on the forum. I’ll contact Ann. She might be able to help you.

Don’t worry, Manuela. I got your birthday wishes on my other blog too. Isn’t that neat?! I actually got two from you. Happy belated birthday to you too. It looks like August is a popular birthday month for bloggers. Today is Bino’s birthday.

I started work last Tuesday and our students came back this Monday so life is back in full swing. I certainly enjoyed the summer and all of my freedom but work is going well so far.

Thanks, Lydia. With so many grandchildren, it’s sometimes hard to find any chair to sit in. LOL They do love to be read to. My third grandchild brings a book as soon as you walk in his door.

Charlie and I are really privileged to have grandchildren that live so close. He was with them all day yesterday due to his truck and one of their cars being in the shop so close is good.