In my past blogs I have tried to play down the fact that I have 13 grandchildren, all of whom could be blog fodder if I allowed this to happen. But this morning I was shuffling some photos around in my albums and kept finding pictures of them that I had always loved - some because they are funny (either the picture or the kid), some that I took myself, and others that were sent to me by doting parents.
This is not a "My grandkids are cuter than your grandkids" kind of blog. I'm merely sharing with you snippits of those who have enriched my life. I'm giving only first names and dates of birth, for privacy's sake. You'll see seven of them today, and six of them tomorrow. All except the final two are adults now. But no matter how old they get, I will always remember them as they were in these photos.
Here is Stacey (1974) and Carley (1976.) They've just gotten out of our swimming pool and now are having the outdoors washed off their bodies. They lived in San Diego so during the summers they and their folks were frequent weekend visitors. Jerry really didn't want us to buy a house with a pool; he was sure it would go unused. It didn't. All our grandkids learned to swim in it.
Next are April (1975), Robyn (1979) and Jimmy (1978). Siblings, they also spent lots of time in our pool. Often I would go to their house, bring them in for a couple of days to give their mom some peace and quiet. They also learned to swim in the pool. Robyn was fearless. Even as a tiny little thing we had to put floaties on her arms the minute she hit the front door because she would just walk right off into the pool if we took our eye off of her.
We didn't give swimming lessons to the kids. Rather, we put floaties on their arms and tossed them in, figuratively speaking, among the older kids. It didn't take them long to realize that while the floaties were holding them up, they also were impeding them to go as fast as the older ones. When that realization hit, the little guys took the floaties off and immediately swam like fishes!
I took a photography class through UC Irvine Extension and the teacher gave us instruction on how to take a portrait like this one below using natural light. I had to practice on everyone and Christopher (1982) happened to become a very fetching model. The more I took, the better I got on the focusing, but still, this photo made its way into my heart and my memory.
Christopher's brother, Andrew, (1984) was one of those kids whose ordinary actions were reason enough for a picture. My scrapbook is peppered with funny shots of him. He and his brother played AYSO soccer throughout their growing up, and now in their late 20s and early 30's, they have started up again. Well, Andrew never stopped. I understand Chris just recently rejoined him for Sunday morning games.
I had a hard time learning to be a grandma. In 1975 I was in a new marriage and was working full time. My pattern of a grandmother was my own mother, who was a real old time, hands-on grandma to my own kids, and her idea of fun was to sit on the floor and play card games and board games - and especially Yatchzee - with my four kids. I was not that kind of a person, and my kids were a bit confused as to why I wasn't. But thank goodness for the pool. It was a great learning tool for me, and the fact that my grandchildren have grown up remembering all they fun they had with "grandma and grandpa" means that I did O.K., I guess.
So this is the first installment of my super-duper grandkids. Tomorrow I'll share the remaining 6 grandchildren. I know....
....NOT MORE GRANDKIDS! YES!