Where is im?
Can I see im?
What is it?
Can I see it?
What is it?
Oh, I lub it!
I lub olibes!
Mama, put your hand over your heartbeat!
Oh, my golly. Oh, my golly!
I do it.
That's my job.
I lub lellow.
Grammie, we don't sing at the table.
Grandpa, we don't play music at the table.
Oh! The American Flag!
I lub the American Flag!
It's okay, it's alright, don't worry, I'll pick em up.
It's okay, it's okay, I'm okay.
Don't worry, it's okay, I'm not hurt.
When I arrived at the Gent home on June 12th, I was so excited to re-meet Miss Kellie. The last time Kellie and I were together was in June, 2008. Although we talked fairly regularly on the telephone prior to my visit, I couldn't wait to give her hugs and kisses.
Brian met me at the airport and took me to their home on Elmendorf Air Force Base. Since he parked in the garage, I walked into the house through the garage door.... while Kellie was going out the front door to meet me! When we finally met each other, hugs and kisses were exchanged and Kellie wanted to know where Grandpa was.... Where is im? Can I see im?
After greeting the pregnant Mama and exchanging hugs, I took my things to my room and started to unpack. Kellie wasn't far behind and made a bee line for her bookcase, extracting a few books and handing them to me saying, "Can we read these Grammie?"
Thus began a daily ritual, sometimes multiple times each day, of Kellie and I reading books.
If I read Five Little Monkeys once, I read that cute little book 500 times. In fact, Kellie and I have it memorized. We've examined every illustration, several times, and expounded on each monkey, action, consequence and gender of each monkey.
The Hungry Caterpillar was our second favorite book.
Olivia was another favorite.
Kellie was a very attentive reading partner and had several rituals she went through with certain books. She never let me down and it was so much fun!
The fun thing about Laura and Brian is they let me jump right into their life. That evening I was able to be the one to oversee bath time with Kellie.... and I taught her how to make a Bubble Beard! In fact, I was able to participate in the whole bedtime ritual!
After about a week, Brain let me do the whole process ... by myself!
Rituals, routines, schedules all help the Gent home run like a smooth machine.
After a month of Grammie in house, I've wondered how much work it's been for Laura to get Kellie back on track. I know I must have upset the smooth running machine a few times, at least.... with only the best intentions.
Since I've been home, several people have asked what I did, where I went and what I saw while in Alaska. Many have been surprised to learn I didn't go fishing, or camping, or exploring.
I didn't go there to go fishing, camping or exploring!
My purpose in going to Alaska was to spend time with the Gent family, bond with Kellie and be there with Laura when she delivered her second child.
Mission Accomplished! Barely!