December 01, 2005

My father's latest addiction...

Laura is very lucky to have a very attentive Grandpapa. All she asked for was a videotape of the latest American Girl movie (which aired on Tuesday, about Colonial Girl Felicity and her Loyalist Friend Elizabeth), because she knows, especially after our NYC trip last year, not to ask anyone remotely related to her for a doll that costs around $100 US.

All of a sudden, Grandpapa asked Mommy what AG doll Laura might prefer to find under the Christmas tree. Well, of course she has a preference. She sleeps with the catalogue (and I'm still trying to find out how they found me on the prairie) under her pillow, and dreams of Elizabeth.

Then Grandpapa asked what size nightgown Laura might wear, so that she and the doll of her dreams might be similarly attired for evening. And then he discovered that the doll has a doll of its own.

Now he's talking about getting her a second doll, for her birthday. In August. The argument being that it would be twice as fun. That's what Grandpapa says.

I've had to train myself (and I'm still working on it) to let my parents spoil the kids with gifts. First, they aren't spoiled, and second, they get it from just one side of the family. My parents, who are still fortunate to enjoy good health and are still working, have a grand total of four grandchildren, while Tom's parents, who've been retired for a while, have 12. And we don't get to see, or spend as much time with, my parents as we would wish. Tom's parents live down the road. My parents live on the Upper West Side, and we're lucky if we get to see them once a year, though when we do we try to make it for an extended time.

The other thing that dawned on me just the other day is that I didn't have a grandfather when I was growing up. By the time I was born, only one grandparent, my mother's mother, who would come to live with us, was still alive. And I'm beginning to see how magical the bond between grandfather and granddaughter is. My fondest memory of our last visit is petite Laura sitting in a newly-bearded Grandpapa's lap, reciting her latest bit of poetry to him, and him beaming. I'm glad they're having so much fun together.

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