I Feel Like a Princess (sort of)

I am a not-so-old, pretty princess. How’s that for self-affirmation?

This is not a sudden realization. It’s a quote from my eight-year-old granddaughter Ella. Let me back up a little.

I picked my grandchildren up from school for my daughter one day last week. Ella and her younger brother and sister were in the backseat. Mia, who is ten, was up front with me. When I have my grandkids, the pressure is always on to do something other than just go home. I decided to go through the car wash. This is literally a cheap thrill for them (and it gets my car cleaned).

Afterwards, we headed to Dunkin’ Donuts for coffee for me and donuts for them. (All right, who am I kidding? I wanted donuts, too.) Somewhere along the way, Mia told me something she had noticed about me. Something that I would just as soon have no one notice about me. Thankfully, it was just an observation about the way I look – at this season in my life, I can deal with that.

“Well,” I explained to her, “When you get older your body does weird things.” (How is that for the understatement of the year?)

Now, Mia loves me like crazy and about this point she likely realized she was treading on shaky ground. She said, “Oh, Grandmom, you don’t look old. You look like you’re in your forties.”

With that, Ella commented, “No, she looks like she’s in her thirties!”

“Wow,” I said, “that makes me practically your mom’s big sister. That might be taking me back a little too far.”

Ella replied, “I don’t know, Grandmom, but I think you look like a not-so-old, pretty princess.”

We left it there. It doesn’t get any better than that.

And, while I’m on the subject of my grandkids, as I write this I’m at my other set of grandchildren’s house while my son and his wife are away for a few days. It’s a school day, so we were up early. My seven-year-old grandson cuddled up on the couch under a blanket and asked if he could watch a show.

“Does Mom let you watch a show before you go to school?” I asked being fairly certain of the answer.

“Well, Grandmom, you’re in charge now,” he replied. They sure learn how to work the system early!

Not Just Another Lunch Date

Last week I told you about my lunch at the Ritz Carlton.  This week I swapped the glitz of the Ritz for the cadence of a cafeteria – a school cafeteria.  I received one of the sweetest invitations I have ever received from my granddaughter, Mia.  The students at her school have the option of inviting their parents to join them for lunch on their birthday.  Mia explained to her teacher that she shares her birthday with her grandmother and asked if she could invite not only her mom for lunch, but also me.  What a privilege.

Happy Birthday, Mia!

Happy Birthday, Mia!

It has been many years since I dined at a hinged table with attached seats in a school cafeteria.  The setting is familiar to my childhood – one end of the room is filled with a stage and the other the kitchen with its line of children with serving trays.  The chatter was lively, likely increased by the fact that it was the next to the last day of school.

Times have changed, so we were not allowed to sit at the same table as Mia’s class.  Mia didn’t care.  She was happy to have us there and especially proud of her adorable baby sister, who just turned one.  I believe every girl in her class stopped to coo over her.

The highlight of my day was watching my daughter.  I held back my emotions as I observed her as a mom.  Wasn’t I taking cookies to her class just a short time ago?  Where did the last ten years go?  I don’t know but as I watched Mia offer cookies that she and her mom had baked for her class, I marveled at how quickly they passed – the years, not the cookies, though they went fast, too.

Mia is the best birthday present I ever received.  She launched me into grandmotherhood and I love it.  Not only am I celebrating my birthday and Mia’s birthday, but also ten years of being a grandmother.  I am blessed.