The Softest Thing

Baby's feet by Pamela S. WightI have a friend who refuses to change diapers. He’ll hold and cuddle. He’ll change the baby’s clothes. He’ll help with the laundry and vacuuming, but change a diaper? There he puts his foot down – NO.

I beg to change diapers. Me!! Me! Let me! I have to tone down my enthusiasm so my family doesn’t think I’m too strange. But what could be better than changing a newborn’s diaper? Continue reading

My Grandmother’s Legs

jeans, legs, fashion, grandmother jeansLately, I’ve been thinking a lot about genes. Yes, genes, not jeans, although denims get into the picture too.

For instance, my mom (not allowed to say her age or she’ll never talk to me again – let’s just say the first number starts with a ‘9’), wears the cutest jeans. I hope I have her genes, but so far I haven’t found one genome we share. She’s tiny and cute and flirty. I’m tall and not-as-cute and serious. See? Continue reading

Love’s Labor Lost?

labor, mother, grandmother, babyWhen my friends first learned I was going to be a ‘grandmaw,’  some of them guffawed at me, as if my freedom, feistiness, and femaleness would soon be out the window. After all, what does a grandmother do but bake cookies, babysit and bring out the photos of her grandbabies too often?

In protest, a month before my first grandbabe was born, I participated in a 10k run and my guy and I flew off to Italy to share a villa with friends. No old biddy waiting for grandchildren was I! Continue reading

Adventures in Babysitting

babysitting, grandmother, granddaughter, flyingTraveling with a 5-year-old is not for the faint-at-heart.

My Boston granddaughter visits my man and me for a wonderful wacky week, but now it’s time for me to fly her back to the “right” coast.

Because of a planned 6:30 a.m. shuttle for a 9 a.m. flight, I urge my rosebud to bed early the night before and warn her that “I’ll wake you up tomorrow so we can make our flight on time!”

Every other morning, the sleepy princess slumbers past 8:30, and her devious grandmother (yes, that’s me), anxious for the day’s fun to begin, releases the button to her air mattress, deflating the bed and waking the befuddled girl.

So on flight day, I wake up at 5 a.m., figuring I have 75 minutes to shower, dress, and pack before the little one is woken.

But at 5:15, I hear a noise in the child’s room and find her dressed (including headband, shoes, and bracelet), ready to “help” her Madre.

Have you ever packed with a 5-year-old? Each item is lovingly petted, then thrown into the suitcase with wild abandon. The child practices bouncing and jumping on the said suitcase so that it closes properly.

However, her red carry-on case is cajoled to close too aggressively, and one of the side locks suddenly appears in the girl’s hand. Her wide blue eyes express the perfect sentiment:flying with child, granddaughter, suitcase, grandmother


We swirl to the airport and stand in line at security, me handling my suitcase, her suitcase, my carry on and her carry on,  while simultaneously holding granddaughter’s hand.

The line is long, the wait interminable for a wide-awake little girl. “Mommy always lets me sit on my carry on,” she explains patiently.

Well, Mommy wasn’t missing a lock, I mumble to myself, but for the sake of happiness, I let my sweetuns sit (softly! I admonish) on her hard red case.

But the damn lock is missing, and with 10 people ahead of us, and 98 behind, the red case explodes open.

child's medical kit, security lines, airport, grandmotheringOut pops 6 My Little Ponies; 1 toothbrush; 4 headbands; 1 long-legged, pink-clad doll; 3 Fancy Nancy books; and 1 kid’s medical kit that includes a stethoscope, blood pressure cuff, 1 thermometer, and 1 reflex hammer.

The security guard barks, “Keep it moving!” as I frantically throw the items, now spread out on the airport floor like ants on a picnic table, into the red case.

“Hurry, Madre,” my granddaughter exclaims, probably hearing the exasperated sighs behind us.

Miraculously, I jam it all in and snap the case (sort of) shut, leaving out not even one little pony.

We make it to our airplane seats unimpeded, although I admit my grateful sigh is loud enough to induce some chuckles in the rows in front and behind us. I pray that the little one is as tired as I am after our early morning trials, but she proceeds to talk, and talk, and talk the entire 5 ½-hour-trip! Not that her conversation isn’t fascinating, but halfway through I suggest it’s time for us to take a nap.

I could have suggested we take a flying leap out of the airplane at 3,000 feet in the air.

“Madre! Did you forget I don’t nap anymore???!”

Two hours later I suggest we close our eyes, just to give them a rest.

“I’m not tired, Madre, but you can close your eyes.” She proceeds to examine me with her medical kit, stethoscope on my chest and thermometer on my lips, to see if there is a medical reason for my fatigue.airplane, pilots, flying with child, female pilots

And then, she asks to go to the bathroom, noting that the “pilots” seem to walk to the rear of the plane often (she doesn’t understand the difference between air flight attendants and pilots, and I’m so impressed that she thinks it’s normal to have three female pilots for one plane, I don’t try to explain).

But when we make it to the back, my granddaughter is shocked and dismayed at the “pilots” sitting in their seats, facing the wrong way.

“HOW CAN THEY STEER FROM HERE???” she screams in concern.

Philosophically, I think sometimes that’s exactly how it feels in life – we steer from the wrong end of the plane.

But I ditch my ruminations, buy her a ginger ale and a box of raisins, and we read “The Night Before Kindergarten” until the plane gently lands.

Facing the right way.

granddaughter, flying, airplane, grandmothering, traveling, adventures in babysitting

The Newness of Being

baby, mother's day, grandmother, unborn

Grand I feel and

Radiant, each time an

Arrival occurs of a

New Baby, a type of

baby, newness of being

Diety, in my eyes, because at the

Moment of each birth I revel in the newness

baby, mothers, joy

Of being. And then, as a grand

Mom, I sink into thankfulness.

grandmother, baby, grandson

Happy Mom’s Day, from my family to yours.