Last week CG and I were driving home from Walmart with twelve year old son, Weston, and seven year old granddaughter, Hoolie, in the back seat.
A few years ago, Hoolie and her mom lived with us. She and Weston detested the sight of each other back then. Daily, they found unique ways to torment each other. He would accuse her of stealing whatever Lego man he was currently missing. She would sneak upstairs to his room and stand there, dangling a toe inside his doorway, hoping to elicit a reaction. He would tattle that she was getting dangerously close to looking at his bicycle. She would slyly reach her fingers toward his gummy worms, never quite touching them, smiling sweetly as he screeched, “Mom! She’s trying to touch my candy!” We adults threw up our hands in despair on many occasions.
Lately, the air has been much sweeter, largely due to the fact that they live eleven blocks apart. I reveled in the conversation coming from the back seat last week:
Weston: “Would you like a cheese stick?”
Hoolie: “Thank you for offering one to me.”
Weston: “You’re welcome.”
Who were these aliens?
Hoolie: “Remember back when we used to live together?”
Weston, fondly: “Yeah…”
Hoolie: “We had some good times back then, didn’t we?” [Good for whom? I have gray hair now.]
Hoolie: “Do you remember when we used to be mean to each other and Grandma [me]
used to make us say ten nice things about each other every time we said something mean?”
Weston, laughing: “Yeah.”
Hoolie: “Man. That was crazy.”
As we carried the groceries from the car, Hoolie said, “Let’s go inside and talk about the old days some more.” I am glad that she has pleasant memories of her imprisonment with Weston.
Do you notice just a hint of irritation in Weston's' smile?
Another seven year old, grandson Avatar, came to visit last Saturday. He was sitting next to me as I logged onto my blog.
Avatar: “Wow! You go to For-a-gen Quang?”
Me: “Yup—I sure do.”
Avatar: “My mom goes to For-a-gen Quang too!”
Me: “She does? Did she ever tell you why she goes to For-a-gen Quang?”
Me: “It’s because the cutest kids in the world are on For-a-gen Quang.”
Avatar: “They are?”
Me: “Sure—I’ll show you.”
He stared in amazement as I scrolled down and he saw pictures of himself and family.
Me: “Do you know why you’re on For-a-gen Quang?”
Avatar: “No. Why?”
Me: “Because For-a-gen Quang is my site. I’m the one who puts all those pictures on there.”
You would have thought I had said I was Justin Bieber’s mom or something.
Avatar: “Really? You own For-a-gen Quang?”
He sat and smiled while it all soaked in. You could almost see the little thought bubble around his blond head that said, “My Grandma is famous.” I didn’t have the heart to tell him that only about thirty people actually read Foreign Quang—mostly relatives and a few extremely kind blog friends. I did have to break it to him though that it’s actually pronounced “Foreign.”
Daughter Em told me of another situation with Avatar last week. He, like many boys, loves to go to the Lego website. His dad told him he didn’t want him going there and playing video games. Avatar replied, “Dad. I’m not going there to play games. I’m going there to look at product.” Yes, this is the same child who forced his friends to watch a documentary on how the prophecies of Nostradamus compared to the prophecies of the Hopi Indians.
I am definitely not wiser than a seven year old.