no summer plans until…

“How do we get roped into these things?” my husband asked facetiously.

What things?

Things like taking care of grandchildren for a day or two weeks this summer.

It sort of began when I volunteered to go to Little Rock and supervise grandchildren so my daughter could focus on a weekly business meeting. Looking ahead I saw 13 weeks of nothing else much to do except one short week visit from granddaughter Brittany and her family.

I supervised during one business meeting. Then my son from St. Louis called, “Can the kids come to your house while we prepare our house to sell? It might be for a week or two.”


It was two weeks including a week of Cousin Camp with the Little Rock cousins.

For the rest of the summer we only had that short week visit from Brittany and Chris’ family. We made one more trip to Little Rock to supervise grandchildren during a business meeting.

Meanwhile hubby kept asking, “What are we going to do for four days when Brittany and her boys come to visit?” I did not see a problem. We have entertained per-schoolers and elementary-aged children before. His question did get me thinking though, so we called her, “Do you want to come to our house specifically or would you like to meet us in Branson rather than drive the extra hundreds of miles to our house?” we asked.

“We want to spend time with you and Branson is fine,” she said.

A couple days later, I asked, “What about asking Nate, if he wants to go from St. Louis to Branson?”

Initially Nate said, “We have other plans.” only to call in couple days later and say, “Our plans got changed, so we would be glad to vacation with you.”

After that an empty August with a couple days covering business meetings remained for these retirees’ summer – until the phone rang, “Do you have enough timeshare points that I can use to go to Fairfield Bay when my friend’s family goes?” my daughter asked. “More than enough,” I assured her. “And would you mind if we rented another unit and visited you up there?” I asked in return.

We had three days to prepare for that weekend. En-route, my cell phone dinged, “Would you be able to have the boys visit for a week or two while we finish closing on the houses?” Joy, Nate’s wife, asked.

“Sure. When?” I texted.

She suggested meeting and getting the boys about the time we returned from Fairfield Bay. We worked out the details between visits with my daughter and her friends. And Sharon asked, “Can the girls stay Sunday night with you? I need to be home early Sunday morning.”

“Sure, we have a large unit with extra beds. Eli is already planning to stay, so no problem.”

I hung up. That’s when my husband asked me, “How do we get roped into these things?”

“Because they live so far away and we take every opportunity we can to be with the grandchildren,” I said.

So, as I write this, we are heading south to Little Rock with four grandchildren safety belted into place. When we get to Little Rock we will deliver three girls and a boy to their home and will collect two boys to take to our house. We still don’t know how long they will visit, but does that really matter? We may be old. We may need a nap when they don’t. Still, we hope to always be ready to make room for one more visit whenever the phone rings.

About jottingjoan

retired former newspaper writer. Many children and grandchildren. One husband.
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