Just so nobody thinks we're dead, I just wanted to say that we arrived safely back in Nashville on Monday night. Yesterday, we ran around like crazy, and today, I took Mom to the airport to fly back to SoMiss.
Can I just say how nice it is to finally sleep down the hall from William again? Not that he isn't totally charming when he's reaching out to touch my face while crooning "Good Monning, Mama! Hewwo! I wuv you! Wake up, Mama!" Oh, my, the "I wuv you" is an absolute killer. It's actually worth it to be woken up at the crack of dawn to hear his little cheerful voice saying that, but the thrice-nightly blanket calls were completely wearing me out. That's even with Mom taking William duty for an extra hour or so each morning to let me sleep in a little.
So it's good to be back in our own separate rooms. I've been conferring with other parents of toddlers, and the sentiment is universal. Separate rooms when traveling are all good. Bunking together in one room is pretty much all bad. But temporary. And it was worth it to spend some time in Natchez.
We do miss Mama Judi and Grandaddy Johnny, though. They were very nice to put up with us and our ocean of Thomas the Tank Engines, Knuffle Bunny books and shoes for almost two weeks. We left waves of toys, books, sippy cups, and raisins in our wake, and they didn't complain.
It was also very meaningful for me to attend my Mama Lou's 90th birthday celebration. I was unable to make it to my Grandaddy Bill's 90th party back in December, so it was especially important to me to make it to this one. Mom organized a big birthday luncheon at the historic Eola Hotel last Saturday, and we had about20 relatives attend. Mama Lou even got a little bit choked up when we asked her to blow out her birthday candles; it's not often we can pull together all of her living relatives, so I know it must have been special for her.
Me and Mama Lou:
And Mama Lou and her great grandson:
Mama Lou and Grandaddy Bill, who are my father's parents, are very special people, and I've been lucky to have them in my life for so long. Not many women in their 30s can say they have three living grandparents, but I can. And I wanted William to be there, too. He won't remember, but I will. And I can tell him about it, just like my parents always tell me about my visits with my great-grandparents. My parents have a fading photograph of me sitting on a giant pumpkin in the lobby of the assisted living facility where my great-grandmother lived. I don't know if I really remember visiting her, or if I've just seen the photo and heard the story enough times to incorporate them into my own memories. Either way, I'm glad that the memory, wherever it came from, exists for me.
William and the Larson men:
Me and William (couldn't leave those out, could I?)