Posts Tagged ‘Grand Parenting’

Bob and I just watched the latest Ted Lasso!

It was endearing and fun – SPOILER ALERT the team gets into a pillow fight, Rebecca falls into a canal, and Coach Beard turns into Ziggy Pop in clown drag. But I knew that was coming since I follow the Actor/Coach on Insta. We are left wondering if Ted actually tried a psychedelic! And for all you new kids, Baby Boomers may not have had MDMA, but we did a little tripping in our time.

Of course this Ted episode was filmed in Amsterdam.

A city filled with bikes, canals, and adventure. And TULIPS; I was there over 50 years ago and it looks like it hasn’t changed much. The real change is the recent, and not very well studied, use of psychedelic drugs to treat PTSD and severe depression. Do you really need a therapist next to you for an eight hour trip? And which “type” of talk therapy would be beneficial?

“It’s crazy, all the heterogeneity of what folks were trained in,” says Eiko Fried, associate professor of psychology at the University of Leiden in the Netherlands… It’s not normal in a treatment study to say, do whatever psychotherapy you want, for whatever length you want,” says Fried. Such inconsistencies inevitably muddle the results, meaning “you can’t really learn much. You’re shooting yourself in the foot with protocols like that.”


Only to muddle reality further, we awoke to the news that a Welsh soccer team, Wexham, just won a promotion to the professional league! Guess who owns Wexham? Two baby-faced American actors, Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney, bought the team for a mere pittance in 2021, its value now quadrupled.

Some people get puppies and bake sourdough in a pandemic, and some buy failing foreign football teams!

“Wrexham’s Association Football Club has formed an important part of the community in the small town in northern Wales since its formation in the 1860s, but despite strong support from local residents it has long struggled financially to pay its players and maintain its operations, almost going bankrupt with multimillion-dollar debts around a decade ago.”


Wales is on my short list of places to see, ever since my sister Kay told me it’s the most beautiful country in the world! And thanks to Ancestry, my Welsh heritage has been confirmed – my maternal grandfather was definitely Welsh. There was always a bit of a rumor around my beautiful, redheaded Nana. The woman who was holding me in a car in 1949 when our family went out for a drive to see a new airport. The woman who brought me to my first motion picture, Picnic, telling me how “grown-up” I was before ratings became a thing. I knew I came from a long line of proud, strong Pennsylvania women.

“Throw your bread out on the water, and it will come back with jelly on it.”

“We’re from County Mayo, God help us.”

I can only remember her long, black skirts and the sound of her black shoes on pine floors; her copious jars of pickles on shelves. But I remember the feeling of independence and confidence she instilled in me so long ago.

Today, a new Ted Lasso will appear on AppleTV. I’ve got a feeling the team’s losing streak is about to end. And I’m sincerely hoping my dance with breaking bones is done. Bob is asking me where I want to go next, the travel bug has infected him again. My gypsy/handy husband is ready to scour the globe, and I’m his reluctant, fragile wife. I didn’t rehearse for this part, I always played the fun-loving sprite, ever eager to try something new.

Opening new pathways in the brain is one way to defray the costs of aging I’m told. Have I told you that Bob has taken up woodworking and built a board and batten wall in our bedroom? With only a one-handed wife, he enlisted a little extra help with painting. Maybe we should go hiking in Wales? No other country has a dragon on its flag!

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Note to new moms everywhere. Keep a journal! Because chances are, especially if you have a girl, there will come a time when your adult daughter will ask you exactly how you handled each developmental stage of your baby’s life. When Google doesn’t work, and her friends’ suggestions won’t do the trick, you will be called upon to offer up your advice.

So you must be prepared! And that’s when you’d better have a good memory.

Take naps for instance. My constant refrain was, “The Bride napped right up into Kindergarten, she loved her nap. The Rocker gave his up at two!”

All of that is true. Only I don’t recall how I knew it or accomplished any of it. It was over 30 years ago after all. There’s a picture of my girl all blonde curls spread out sleeping on her bed with her pink acrylic blanket and Barbie doll, so I do have evidence. And before my feminist friends complain, the Bride, we found out at the age of two, was allergic to mites. So all cotton or wool blankets, stuffed animals, rugs and curtains were removed from her bedroom. Sounds harsh I know, but I didn’t want to label her an “allergic” child or give her pills all the time.

Plastic Barbie was her only bedtime comfort.

And now I don’t feel so bad. A friend has just blogged about her solution to naptime troubles. She has an ingenious solution which involves a vintage plastic lunchbox that her mom saved for her grandson. http://www.babykerf.com/the-lunchbox-surprise/

How to get the toddler into his/her crib without the benefit of a bottle? How to get the toddler to stay in said crib and not try climbing out? How to get the toddler to stay in bed once they have left the crib behind? How to get the toddler toilet trained? And the list goes on and on and everyone has their two cents to say; and if you’re not the type of grandma to keep everything baby-related, or if you have a spouse who thought it was his duty to recycle all your children’s toys while you were away, or if your brain has just forgotten the day to day tasks of childrearing and only held onto the highlights, then you are out of luck.

This past weekend the Bride and Groom visited Walter Place in Holly Springs, MS. The Love Bug had a chance to play with her adorable toddler cousins Antonia (Tony) and Franchesca (Frankie). Thanks to my sister-in-law, and my beautiful niece Lucia for their hospitality. And thanks for adding their toddler wisdom to all those tricky questions. One day maybe the girls will dress up in hoop skirts for a Pilgrimage of their own.

from left: Frankie, Tony, Lucia, Bug

from left: Frankie, Tony, Lucia, Bug

And Bob and I are pleased to announce that this coming Thanksgiving, we will be giving the Bride and Groom hints about changing baby boy diapers! Talk about tricky!


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This week has been proclaimed National Small Business Week and DC is alive with everything little http://www.nationalsmallbusinessweek.com/ And I was involved in a group message about baby carriers with my sister-in-law and the Bride’s Amazon baby registry. I totally understand wanting to support our local businesses, the problem comes when a party is in one state, the parents-to-be live in another state, and the party-goers are mostly from an entirely different part of the world (like Hawaii, or say upstate NY). The nice thing about the Goliath Amazon is that they link to many smaller stores, and they also have a check box next to the “add to cart” link that says – “buying this gift elsewhere?” or, “Yes I am purchasing this item at a store of my choosing!”

I must admit that I’ve been feeling only slightly out of my element since the baby registry talks began. My parental style has again been challenged by this watershed event. “Mommy did you use scissors to cut my nails?” “No, sweetheart, I think I just bit them.” “Did you bathe me in the sink, or did you have a baby bathtub?” “No darling, I used to take you in the bath with me and bathe you on my lap.” I was beginning to sound like some Neanderthal cave mom! Looking back, maybe I was. Living on a mountain, check! Heating with wood, check! Hanging cloth diapers outside on the line since I didn’t have a dryer, check check! Well, that is until the Flapper came to visit and went right down to the local hardware store and ordered an electric clothes dryer and charged it to Bob. Check…

And this is how becoming a grandparent is similar to becoming a mother-of-the bride. You are treading on an emotional land mine; how to balance your ideas for a best practice, with your daughter’s and her husband’s ideas. Yes, nowadays the dad is stepping up to the challenge of parenting thanks to all those rights we women fought for and are still having to defend. Thank you to the Groom’s Mom for raising an enlightened man, one who is not afraid of being surrounded by pink! But I have to say that the one thing planning a wedding has taught me was to listen, and follow their lead. It was their wedding, and this is their baby. I won’t have to buy them a dryer, and I don’t smoke so I won’t be confined to the porch (sorry Gi). I usually try to NEVER give advice unless someone asks me for it. Plus, I am lucky to have a great relationship with my daughter, and maybe key, I have a wonderful MIL. She is a licensed marriage counselor who reminds me daily about boundaries.

Beyond babies and back to business, our soon-to-be Senator Tim Kaine asked on his Facebook page, “What are your favorite small businesses across Virginia?” My favorite VA businesses are: 1) a chic shoe store named Scarpa http://www.thinkscarpa.com/ 2) a delicious Chardonnay from White Hall Winery http://www.whitehallvineyards.com/ 3) my friend Wendi’s high end consignment traveling business http://www.leftoverluxuries.com/ and 4) the only place to go for jewelry and unique gifts http://www.lynnegoldmanstudio.com/ Oops I almost forgot, 5) if you love freshly baked rolls for your next barbecue try Great Harvest, next to Cville Coffee http://greatharvestcville.com/ A very “great” family owned business! And please, if you care about small businesses, read this article and contact your legislators:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/fred-r-becker-jr/national-small-business-week_b_1533807.html because, “…a vote for S.2331/H.R. 1418 is a vote in favor of Main Street small businesses and the average American taxpayer. It’s a vote for the American way of life.” Amen.

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