Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Bon Voyage, Grandad

Sweeney and Harper's grandad jetted back to Christchurch today. Here's a probably abridged list of what he's done while here:
  • hung things on walls around the house;
  • erected and filled the paddling pool;
  • deflated and emptied the paddling pool;
  • sorted out Sweeney's trike, the stroller tyres and the coffee table;
  • assisted with the removal of more than two carloads of stuff to the landfill and the landfill shop;
  • helped me break down Sweeney's cot and assemble his bed and set up his room;
  • gave Sweeney lots of baths and got him into his pyjamas lots of times;
  • took Sweeney for lots of walks to the dairy;
  • drank countless cups of tea and made me countless cups of coffee;
  • cooked bacon and eggs and toast and beans for our dinner on more than one occasion;
  • made shepherds pie for us to take to KimberleyHarperJoe's for dinner;
  • did our dishes lots, and put out washing;
  • babysat Sweeney so I could drink myself stupid on plum wine on my birthday;
  • talked quietly to me, and encouraged Sweeney to do the same, on the morning after my birthday;
  • helped me and Sweeney keep Harper from killing himself in all the ways a one-year-old can kill themselves in a house with stairs, power sockets, screwdrivers and poisons that is now geared toward a nearly-three-year-old;
  • bought Sweeney an ice block, hot chips and one of those inflatable hammers at the Island Bay festival, then bought him a sausage in bread at the Ribble Street Trolley Races the following week;
  • made several attempts at explaining other people's points of view to Sweeney and gave Sweeney cuddles when Sweeney was past reason and just needed a cuddle;
  • spent an entire day tracking down just the right hinge-thing for Harper's box, two days waiting for it to arrive, then an hour installing it;
  • babysat Harper so Sweeney and I could go to the Moir St party, on Sunday when Harper was with us for the afternoon;
  • introduced Sweeney to Tom & Jerry cartoons;
  • told me and Sweeney some lovely stories about himself as a little boy; and
  • stopped me freaking out when Sweeney jumped on his bed and banged his head into the wall so hard it made a dent. In the wall. In the morning, his forehead didn't even show a bruise or an egg. By contrast, Harper tapped his noggin on a cupboard next to a series of pillows and squabs set up for him, and he had a proper, throbbing welt in about 0.3 seconds. Just as his mother pulled up outside.

He also plugged away at me to clear out the front room, which has been a storeroom and general no-go area since September. It's a job only I can do, lots of decisions about what to keep, what to throw out. A bit more emotional than I'd expected, lots of notes, photos, letters, memorabilia, so in true Ange-fashion, I spent a lot of time rearranging the kitchen, baking, mucking about anywhere but in the front room. But I attacked it with renewed gusto yesterday, and it's nearly there.

Sorry for going on, but it's been special and nice and we'll miss him. There have been lots of wonderful other things happening for us over the last week, but I'll catch up on those tomorrow ...

1 comment:

Christy said...

It sounds like you have an very loving dad. I bet Sweeney will remember the visit for years to come, too.

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