Man Alive...Chapter Five
Time sure flies when you are having fun! This past year was filled with so many memories. With Drew in Pre-school then in Kindergarten, Grandpa and I find ourselves babysitting after school. Drew is such a delight, I almost feel like I should pay her mommy for allowing us to watch her. When I go to William Holliday to pick her up, I can see her down the hall. She is so excited to see me. We make secret waves and faces until she comes running outside to give me a hug. Then, it's off to the playground. She loves to run, jump, slide, swing, and climb. She's fairly fearless and wants to do what everyone else is doing. So, I swallow hard when I see her jump off a swing or hang from the monkey bars. This past summer I took her to swimming lessons at Splash City in Collinsville. She amazed everyone with her ability to dive right in and swim underwater. She also learned to swim a bit on her back. She went through a "clingy" stage this summer. I'm not sure if it was because there was such a change from going to school and to Leanne's to coming to my house all day, or not. Drew had to follow me everywhere. I mean everywhere. By the time Kindergarten started, she was over that. "I'm a big girl, now, Grandma!"
Our biggest adventure was going to Hawaii. I had never been there and Larry couldn't go, so Chrissie and Drew went with me. Pictures are permanently imbedded in my mind's eye of the places and faces we saw in the "Garden of Eden." Hopefully, I will get those pictures on the website before long. Some of the highlights were - staying at the Queen Kapiloni Hotel with a magnificent view of Diamond Head and swimming in the pool and in the crystal blue ocean; staying with Erich and Beth and Annie - going to the luau, children's museum, and nature walk to a waterfall; telling at the main library in Oahu with Annie and Drew there; fixing supper together or eating out at a sushi bar and a Japanese restaurant; watching Annie and Drew play on the beaches, and...meeting Santa Claus on vacation!! Chrissie had to go back home, so Drew and I stayed another 4 days at my Stortell friend, Vickie Dworkin. It was a pleasant stay...Drew stopped dead in her tracks when she saw a chameleon on the floor. There are thousand so lizards but I never did get to see the chameleon. Vickie has a lovely backyard, where we lounged in a huge hammock or swinging chair. We went to the beach while we were Kaluah (sp?). It was sooo beautiful esp. on the day that the colorful parasailers were out. Of course, I ended up with a severe sunburn that lasted until I got home. We also went to a spiritual center that hosted other faiths but the main attraction was the Buddhist temple. Drew loved the goldfish pond. We went for a walk in a nature preserve. Drew was getting a little bored when she met a little Japanese American girl throwing bread to the colorful carp. She shared her bread and the two of them had a great time together. It was so cute watching them. Erich came and took us to the airport and Drew slept alllllllll the way to Denver. When we got on the plane to StL, she made up with the boy in front of us and began laughing at his antics. She had everyone on the plane laughing...her staccato laughter was that contagious!
There were other wonderful memories, too, but many of them are the small things that she does. She is learning to read and it is a joy to see her identify words that she's read in her reader (an old Dick and Jane primer from the library). She still enjoys playing "talk" and telling stories. And, she's become quite the little artist. She loves to write on her white board and play "matching games." Her coloring has improved greatly as she uses many colors now to fill in the pictures. She wants to help in the kitchen at suppertime. If she likes what I'm having she is sure to say that I'm the best cook...but, if she doesn't like it...she tells me that too! She's become adept at using the computer. She loves to play the games!
She has such a joy of life. I hope she can keep that as she grows. Everyday is still a new wonder with new things to explore and learn. God has surely gifted us with the most beautiful, talented, sweet, generous and one-of-a-kind child. For this and so much more...we are grateful.