Calm DOWN!

calm down, Calvin Hobbes, stay calmI haven’t seen my East Coat grandchildren in three months. Maybe, at the ages of 2 and 3, they won’t remember me.

So, like any self-respecting, upright, honest and upstanding woman, on this visit I bring 2 singing stuffed animals, 2 books, 2 lollipops, and a bag of my famous chocolate chip oatmeal bars.

They may not remember me, but by God, they will like me!

I arrive at their 1-week vacation cottage, a place where they’ve never seen me, so they could be even more confused about who I am and how I fit into the scheme of things. But as soon as I enter the front door, I’m greeted with “Madre! Come see my room!” “Madre, look at my car!” “Madre, can I have my pop now?” “Madre, let’s play outside!”

I breathe a sigh of relief as they cuddle with me, sit on my lap while I read stories, play with my sparkling earrings, and stroke my face like a blind person making sure my lips, eyes, nose have remained in place.



I want to be the good Madre, because after this week, I won’t see them again for at least three more months.

So when they jump on the couch, I bite my lip.

When they eat their lollipops and touch the doorknobs with their sticky fingers, I only let an ‘ugh’ escape.

When Sophie brushes my hair and pulls too hard on a curl, I just laugh.

Until bed time.

The three of us are sharing the room – Sophie and I are in the double, Clark in his own little futon. The clock is pushing 10 and I’m exhausted, but Clark is yet again sneaking out of the room like a little munchkin looking for Oz.

“Clark!” I yell, scaring the poor kid into scampering back to his bed like a bird into his cage.

“That’s enough!” I continue. “Bed! Time!”

Sophie jumps out of her side of the bed and stands in front of me, chest puffed, hands held above her head.

“Madre, Madre!” she exclaims dramatically, moving her arms from the up position to below her waist. “C a l m  D O W N!  Just C A L M  d o w n.”

“But…!” I begin to protest. But then I realize, what the hell, she’s right!

And I laugh.

And continue to be the good Madre the rest of the week.

calm down, babies sleeping, relaxation

Calming Down

20 thoughts on “Calm DOWN!

  1. I love their name for you, and their sleeping poses look much like how our kids used to sleep with us in our bed! : )


  2. Always enjoy reading your stories of your life & family. The picture of the children must belong to Sean not Nadine, right? Molly is doing much better with the potty training. She makes me laugh at least once or twice each day.


    • Dogs and children both have the ability to make us see life the way we should! And to laugh, thank goodness. The photo is of Nadine’s two, cuddled together at 6 in the morning….


  3. Ahhhhh Pam! These are the days! I can tell you are “kvelling”…oozing from your insides with love!!!! Your kidlets are adorable! I love this moment of time that you portrayed! Thanks!


  4. Pam, this is such a sweet sotry and it opened like a bud… it developed, grew, and opened into an offering: an unexpected realization in the same way that Sophie’s assertion that you calm down did for you. Thank you- and I have to say that I related to this “calming down” too- this desire for acceptance and this attempt to grasp at it with “treats” (remember my brownie blogpost? Guess we’re more than just birthday twins, eh?)


  5. Love your story. I used to baby sit two adorable children, a niece and a nephew, and those memories are similar to your story.

    I found you on Hilltop Notes, joan cannon.


    • Welcome to my rough wighting! Thanks for finding me – and yes, being around ‘adorable children’ can make us need ‘calm down’ reminders!!! The more adorable, the more energetic and challending. :+)


  6. But, by god, they WILL love you! I love your writing. You tell the most fabulous stories. And you have grandchildren, to boot, you lucky soul.


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