Question: What is better than watching all of one's household goods being delivered to one's new house?
Answer: Watching all of one's household goods being delivered to one's new house AND fitting in a quick visit with family.
Dan and I just returned home from another Texas trip. We are one giant-step closer to our move. Everything that has been in storage for the past three months has been safely delivered to our new house. For this trip we flew into Houston, on Friday, where Chris picked us up. We spent that afternoon and evening visiting with Chris and Kelsey and playing with the grandkids.
Clara, who is now in kindergarten, is a fountain of delight! She and I spent a lot of time playing with paper dolls that I brought to her. She has a great imagination, which she showed off in her self-assumed role as Director of Paper Doll Drama. Occasionally, though, the drama would pause as her left brain took over:
Clara: Let's put all of the clothes over here, Grandma.
Grandma: Okay. [Grandma starts stacking up the dolls' clothes.]
Clara: No, Grandma. We need to put them in different piles, like this. [She begins sorting tops, bottoms, dresses, shoes and hats into different piles. Grandma, being the fast learner that she is, also begins sorting.]
Clara: No, Grandma, jackets don't go with shirts. They need their own pile.
Grandma: All right. Shall I start a new pile for "things"?
Clara: Yes. [Grandma starts the new pile.)
Clara: But Grandma, animals have to go in a different pile, because they are alive. And these (referring to a French horn and a drum that came with the dolls) are music things, so they go in their own pile. [It isn't long before the "things" have been subdivided into musical instruments, animals, toys and "other things."
It seemed to me that Clara found even more enjoyment out of this organizing activity than she did playing with the paper dolls.
Robert, of course, has changed more than Clara since we saw them last. His vocabulary is growing by leaps and bounds. Even during our short visit, he was using new words on a daily basis. But "STUCK" is his favorite new word. He fully understands the concept of "stuck," and finds a multitude of creative ways to use it. For instance, when a little Playmobil person won't easily come out of its airplane, Robert brings it to the nearest big person for assistance, declaring "stuck.!" When he decides that he's finished with dinner, but Mama hasn't yet released him from his high chair, he squirms and hollers, "stuck!" When Daddy has ahold of his hand, and Robert is trying to wriggle it free, he complains "stuck!" Or, when he's buckled into his car seat and not happy about it, he points to the release mechanism and cries, "stuck." He had me laughing almost non-stop.
Robert also seems to have a lot of natural physical ability. We were surprised to see, at his young age of 23 months, that without any coaching, he took off across a grassy expanse at the park, dribbling a ball with his feet, soccer-style, in a straight line!
At the park, Clara mostly played on the playground equipment.
The mosquitoes were ferocious, so we didn't stay long. When we got home Kelsey put some medicine on some bites that Clara had gotten, including one on her foot. Here she is blowing the spot of medicine so it will dry quicker.
Halloween is only a week away, and the Judd kids, having recently watched the Star Wars movies as a family, will be dressing as Princes Leah and an Ewok. Here are a few shots of them in costume.
Here's a picture of both children, with Clara sporting her "scary Halloween face."
Early Saturday morning Chris drove us to our new house (which is located about 3 hours away) so we could meet the moving van and supervise the delivery. We got there just before the movers, and everything went smoothly. After the Mayflower guys left, Dan sat down in his old, comfortable leather chair (which he hadn't seen in three months) in his brand new living room, just to "try it out." I thought we'd never get him to out of the house! He was ready to kick off his shoes and move in :-) Not so fast, Dan. We still have three months before we retire!
As we usually do when we visit the kids, we spent our nights at a nearby hotel. So on Sunday evening we said our good-byes to Clara, since she would be in school by the time we got to their house the next morning, and we would be gone by the time she came home from school. But, to her surprise, on Monday we (Kelsey, Robert, Grandpa and Grandma) all showed up at her school cafeteria to have lunch with her, before we left for the airport. Judging by her beaming face, having her "fan club" show up at school made her day!