For those reading this article, summer is drawing to a close. For me, with article deadlines, it has barely begun. Other than the heat and humidity that can be extreme when living on the coast, I love summer. School is out which means more time to spend with my grandchildren. Except, I discovered, for all their summer activities.
Having proof that our grandchildren are as smart and all around wonderful as we know they are, the school awards they received acknowledged it. I give a lot of the credit for their accomplishments to their parents and their guidance. When awards ceremonies, 8th grade and kindergarten graduations take place, it means the last days of the school year are upon them.
Their break had barely started when one left for a mission trip and two left for camp. That week, our Charlotte daughter came with our eight-year-old grandson. Although we missed having his sister and brother, it was nice to plan things with him in mind. Our nine-year-old granddaughter hadn’t gone to camp yet, so they hung out together when there was a lull in activities. Nine of us spent time at the aquarium – always a crowd pleaser. Other days included an outing to Southport, time out on the boat, swimming at the pool, exploring the arboretum, making sure to get Britt’s doughnuts, and just hanging out.
They returned to Charlotte, his sister came home and had field hockey camp, he had a week at day camp and his brother had another week at camp. Meanwhile, in Wilmington, the six-year-old returned from his week at camp, but other out-of-towners came to visit. However, I did get to spend a week with my other Wilmington grandchildren.
I loved having them all to myself. Even though I see them almost daily, spending that much time with them gave me more of an insight into their lives. Our six-year-old granddaughter surprised me with how well she is reading. She loved being in kindergarten and is excited about being in first grade. She also likes having some alone time to play in her room without her three-year-old brother bothering her. She loves Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal and mini pancakes for breakfast and pizza, Chick-fil-A or a grilled cheese sandwich for lunch; and she loves to snack on popcorn. We made cupcakes that were a huge hit, played games (which she always seemed to win), colored, and got outside until the heat drove us back in.
Her brother was content playing alone – he loves all things with wheels. Even he beat me at different board games. He also colored, played some learning games on his tablet, and read books to me that weren’t exactly as written. He is a snack hound but always asked if he could have one. He loved bath time, playing hide and seek, and chasing his sister. He kept me on my toes. The last two days I was with them, he attended a morning camp at his pre-school. He loved having that time with children his age, and it gave his sister and I some great one-on-one time.
I was tired by the time the day was over, but it was a good tired. I loved being awakened in the mornings by my granddaughter coming in to snuggle for a while before the day began. I loved the memories I will always have of this time together and hope they will remember it, too.
Between sports camps and family getaways, it will be a while before I get more time with my Charlotte grands. There is a plan for them to visit before school starts up again, and we all look forward to that.
All of them have several more planned activities for the summer, but when they are available, I hope to spend some of that time with them. There are plenty of places to go and things to do right around here and, with the grandkids’ help, I plan to make the most of it.