Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Adventures in Babysitting

This weekend I babysat for my grandsons Henry and Peter while their parents went on a well-deserved few days away with friends.  They joined two other couples and headed to the Maine coast, spending the first night in Portsmouth, New Hampshire and the next day proceeded north to York Harbor.  They had beautiful weather and a wonderful time.  Katie and I texted back and forth, me with updates on the boys, and Katie with updates (and photos) of delicious meals and beautiful scenery.  Hank, Pete, and I had almost as much fun, starting with a Saturday morning trip to Sunnyside Gardens in Saratoga Springs, where the boys took in all the sights of the pumpkin patch, got to ride on the little train, and picked out a few pumpkins.  I loaded the boys into a wagon, to which we added a pumpkin for me, a couple of small (pie) pumpkins for the boys, and three beautiful 9" mum plants which Pete, apparently, found delicious because as I was unloading the wagon, he had a mouthful of  yellow petals!  He hadn't yet gotten to the purple or rust-colored plants...

After Sunnyside, we took a trip to AC Moore where I picked up some baking tools and a box of paints for  Henry.  He's going to paint his little pumpkin.  I decided to fore-go the complicated (for me) stroller in the back of Katie's car and carried Pete while holding Henry's hand.  I had forgotten about that "mind of one's own" as Henry decided to go one way and I had to go the other, but he was a very good boy and even let me re-shelve the $70 Thomas the Train toy that he was dragging behind (unbeknownst to me until we got to the cash register!).  He wanted to buy it for Pete's birthday.  I had to whisper that the reason we were putting it back on the shelf was because it had to be a secret (and not that I hadn't yet printed the 50% off one item coupon that would make such a purchase even considerable)....  That negotiation only cost me two Pez dispensers, a Buzz and a Jessie from Toy Story.  I figured I made out ahead in that transaction!  It'll be a year or two before I have to use the same bartering techniques with Pete, I hope!

As grandparents are known to, I continued a day of indulgence with a trip to MacDonald's for lunch, where I not only let Henry have french fries, but also chocolate milk.  I dragged a high chair into the play space, and Pete and I were onlookers as Henry climbed the heights and found joy in tunnels, slides, and climbing ladders.

We had another fun two days together though I was a little behind the 8-ball this morning... Last night Pete woke up at 1 a.m. in the room he shares with Henry, and fearing he'd wake his brother (and me having two wide-awake kids in the middle of the night) he spent the rest of the night in the guest room with me, kicking off covers, tossing and turning in his version of deep sleep. Did you know that it is possible that for a 25-pound yearling to hog the better part of a queen bed?  Well, he did...  He slept fine, but I never really did fall asleep because I was so aware of him, and didn't want him to roll off the bed!   I couldn't be frustrated, though, because watching him, completely relaxed on his back with his little arms over his head, reminded me of just how beautiful sleeping babies truly are.  I used to spend what seemed like hours watching my children sleep when they were babies and young children, in awe.  Their father would be patient as I would call to him to "just come look for a minute."  Those moments are among my best memories of their early years.

I'm sure there will be more long weekends when I'll be spending time like this with my grandchildren, and I look forward to all of them.  Here is a collage of photos of our time together this weekend:

Weekend with Hank and Pete (click to enlarge)


  1. True joy comes from the simplest things. I share your wonder at the sight of a baby sleeping...it is a sight to behold, to appreciate and to cherish. Gone too soon are those simple sweet memories of our own little ones, but thankfully we have been gifted with grandbabies. Happy Tuesday Grandma <3

  2. Sounds like y'all had a Blast!.....Can I drop off my 2 Younguns??....LOL!

  3. Hey Skinner - how are things in Emerald Isle? Have you recovered from Irene?

  4. We have everything pretty squared a away. The Insurance Adjuster came yesterday. Looks like we may get our shingles and siding fixed, finally. The State even contracted trucks to carry off the debris. So, the weather is beginning to cool off, and Beach Weather is Missing-In-Action, until the Spring! Time to Break-out the Sweaters and Jackets, but the Scenery is Beautiful, with the Changing of the Leaves.
    I enjoy reading your posts, and I believe I gain 10 pounds when you Post about Food....LOL