Saturday, July 13, 2019

The Name of the Game is Collaboration

Kyle has long been a great companion for me in the mornings.  This morning we shared a snack before setting up the Memory game.

Camille unexpectedly joined us.  While I dished up her watermelon, these two got in a Perplexus fix.

Adele appeared.  She wasn't sure she would enjoy this game, but she agreed to play with us.  We are a friendly group of players.  No cutthroat stuff, although winning is acceptable.  At this point in the game I had two matches.  Adele had one.  I was wondering who would win -- Kyle or Camille.

All of a sudden, I did a massive cleanup and won.  Trust me, it was awesome.

We were all getting a little hungry, but there were no responsible adults around.  I offered yesterday's cookie bars.  With milk.

Kyle suggested a puzzle, but the one he brought out did not meet Camille's expectation.  She got her own, and the race was on.  Adele was focused on her chocolatea, but she was officially on Camille's team.

I was on Kyle's team, assigned to borders. For the record, I like officially being on Kyle's team.

Both teams worked very hard.  I have a slight advantage in that I have put all my puzzles together many times.  However, for these particular kids, it's hard to have any advantage with 100-piece puzzles.

Lewis joined us.  I made him chocolatea.  He was not interested in being on anyone's team.

Kyle and I knocked out our puzzle pretty quickly, but observe this collaborative spirit which has manifested itself during their visit.  Kyle joined their team and helped finish their puzzle.

I like both of these puzzles.  I am partial to pirate puzzles.  If you are curious, neither of these is my favorite puzzle.  Maybe we'll get to it.

Suddenly, we had to take a hummingbird break.  In a great mystery, while Papa was gone the hummingbirds would not drink from this feeder.  They drank from the other, but they wouldn't touch this one, so I brought it in, washed it, and set it aside.  Now that Papa has returned, the birds are back to normal.  Normal seems to be very distracting.

It was still early.  Lewis had completely lost his quiet voice.  I know how to help kids quiet down.  This worked immediately.  Heaven forbid responsible adults join us.

Actually, I like all the responsible adults in the house.  My front door has been having serious issues.  I thought this was a lock problem and took it apart.  Only then did I realize that this is not a lock problem, it's a door problem.  That was a lot of work just to identify the problem, but sometimes that's the case.  Thursday I asked for Steve's advice, and he and I reviewed options.  This morning, I brought this up in front of Mr. I Can Fix Anything By Taking It Apart and Putting It Back Together Again.  He was eating his breakfast.  Steve took the screwdriver by the handle and went to work, and work it was.  And, he fixed the door!  

Suddenly, it was time for a trip to BYU!

I have some favorite things on campus.  This is one of them.

I like whispering, so this is another.

Who doesn't like dinosaurs?

The Eyring Science Center has an entire display of dinosaur bones.

Just so you know, no one was safe from Steve's aim.  This was hilarious.

Not all of the fossils were identified.  I told Adele this was a nautilus sawed in half.  I think that was a safe guess.

The vortex cannon won out over everything else today.

We walked to the Clyde Building and followed Steve's lead to a particular classroom.  He told a story I had never heard before.  It involves a robotic soccer team, being in the right room on the wrong day without realizing it, and changing majors.  It's one of the best stories I have ever heard.

These grandchildren of mine have great-grandfather whose name is Clyde.  We took a picture for him.

No trip to BYU accompanied by Janet is complete without a visit to the candy counter.  This picture was for me.

I took this picture on the way to the MOA.

I saw many flowers today.  This is my favorite.

After arriving  home, we had a quick lunch and then some people got dressed up for a wedding.  This was a perfect time to take a formal portrait, except Lewis was not in a collaborative mood.

We all thought if I took a few pictures without him, he'd acquiesce.  We thought wrong.

Hyped on cookie bars and sugar from BYU, a mint did the trick.  Is this a great family, or what?

I was waiting with towels and sunscreen when they returned.

Camille and Janet practiced synchronized splashes.

Adele has four goals for this summer, and one is them is learning how to swim.  She's been coached by both parents over the last few days.  Today?  She got it.

Everyone helped, including the two underwater persons.

Scratch one item off that summer to-do list!  I bought a can of olives today for Item Number Two.  I'll keep you posted.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Dewey, Do You Still Have Papa Ben?

Kyle and Camille joined me this morning.  We played our new favorite game, Labrinth.  It's not collaborative, but we are.

When other people joined us, they made breakfast.  Steve cooked me eggs.  They might be my new favorite.

We ran out of treats, which is a catastrophe around here.  Camille and I fixed that.

Her siblings played quietly while we worked.

Kyle made a Klingon Bird of Prey.  I was thrilled.

With treats baking, Kyle and I went downstairs to play pool.  We were delayed a few minutes while he taught Lewis how to play pinball.

I assure you, he caught on quickly!

I've never been hustled before, but Kyle is a pro at both pool and hustling.  As he was knocking balls in the pockets, I asked about his experience.  Turns out his other grandpa has a pool table and they play often.  That explained a lot.

The pinball machine was a magnet today.  Maybe Lewis at the pinball machine was the draw.

All of a sudden, it was time to go swimming.  Two cute girls got new suits.  Kyle is a pretty clever photo-bomber.

Lewis.  Oh man.  He is a gem.

We always have fun at the pool, but today was exceptional.

And my camera was in fine form.  Check out this picture of Adele.

I heard laughing the whole time.

The kids practiced their jumps.

I gave Camille pointers on how to make the best cannonball splash.

Lewis worked on his jumping.

For the record, it's hard to make a big splash when jumping into Mom's arms.

The frisbees came out.

This was much more complicated than it looked.

Steve was throwing and catching.

This was deliberate.

I found it delightful to listen to this family laugh and laugh while they played together.

Would you rather be a fish?

The fun became a little intense.

Maybe a lot intense.

Lewis enjoyed much of the fun this morning from this perch.

Adele found a different perch.
Trust me, we were all worn out.

Then it was time for lunch.  My grandkids are all pretty good with chopsticks.
Three others had what I was having, which was good because I was several bites into mine before I remembered to take a picture.

Kyle enjoyed everything but the pickled cabbage.  I helped out there.

Lewis has become quite skilled using chopsticks.

Over lunch I noticed that something was different.

Just as we finished our meal, I was able to snatch this cute picture.

After some grocery shopping, Adele and I had time to play our favorite bedbug game. The bedbugs won, and we lost. 

Kyle chose Star Trek.  If you are wondering about the headphones, sometimes the scary parts aren't so scary without sound.

I like Hoot Owl Hoot.

We beat the sun.

I selected a puzzle.  Adele thought it was too easy, but we had fun anyway.

Soon it was time for our treat.  Several others joined us.

I invited Adele to play Memory Tiles with me.  Adele was pleased to cream me during the second round.  In my defense, I don't get a second turn after a match. I hope I don't need a defense.

I taught Lewis how to play.  This went much quicker than I expected.

Then Lewis borrowed my camera.

I didn't realize he'd gone outside.

I knew Janet was giving a few bike-riding pointers to Adele.  I heard that the first trip around the block didn't go as well as expected.

It's fun to see things from Lewis's viewpoint.

Apparently Lewis gave the camera to someone else.

Janet got some training wheels on, Adele made it around the block, and then it was time for swimming.

You are thinking deja vu.

Steve does not allow me to bring my guns to the pool, but he found one and the action started! 

Lewis's puddle jumper acted like armor.

Lewis ran away and then returned ad infinitum, just so you know.

Kyle is a good aim and still gentle with his brother.  This was fun to watch.

If I get to choose, I like evenings at the pool better than midday.  We'll see how far my vote carries.

My friend Amy came over to say hi.  Turns out her father was one of Steve's professors.  I love small worlds.

Adele was in charge of dinner.  She chose chef salad.

This was delicious, and Papa told us all about alpacas.

Thank you, Julie. You're Welcome, Louie.

Did I really want to start this last post of Steve's visit with another picture of my groupies watching Star Trek?  I sure did.  We'...