For nine days I had my two little grandkids with me and six of those were with my ex-husband, Ken. What kind of story do you think this might be? Would you like to hear it?

As you know, a month ago I took care of my two and five year old grandchildren for fifteen days. When Summer and her husband came home from Australia I twisted my hands through what was left of my hair and said, “Eeeh gads, don’t ever ask me to do that again! That was way too long.”

Summer looked at me and said, “Mom, I have to work every day and Lexi has year around kindergarten and she is off for two weeks four times a year. Would you take her to your house for two weeks in Oct.? And will you take Loch for four days when we have to go up North during that same time? He doesn’t have pre-school those days.”

“What did I just say!?” I shouted.

OK, so I watched the kids. But, once again, I made their grandfather, Bumpa, my ex-husband, their grandfather, come and help me.

“You need to build relationships with the kids,” I told him.
I always tell him that.
It works.

Lexi is five and truthful and tactless. I hadn’t warned Ken about that.

About the fourth night in, Lexi turned to Bumpa and said, “Go home. I’m tired of you. I haven’t had any time to myself with BaBa.” She slung her arms around me and gave her grandfather an evil look.

Ken bounded off his chair and shouted out, “I don’t like you, either!”

Oh gads. Two five year olds.

In the ensuing days, Lexi spent a lot of time with her face to the wall for being tactless and rude.

Yes, Bumpa is quite busy building relationships with his grandkids. Fortunately, he is good natured.

Loch, who is two, became afraid of his bowel movements. It was my fault.
A movement was massive and unexpected and somehow while trying to change his diaper the stuff got smeared all over him and up my left arm and part of my stomach. We both had to take showers.
I have apologized to Summer as I know this kind of potty thing can scar a child and they don’t want to poop ever again. Not ever. Which causes it’s own problems.
But listen, I baby sit for free.

Our grandkids went home and Ken stayed to fix my leaking shower. Meanwhile, I had three friendly Gutter Men putting gutters on my roof.
Ken left mid-morning.

The next day, my ex-boyfriend Bill, who now lives in my studio and is my tenant, left late for work. He had lost his car keys.
“I have two more pairs of car keys,” he said, “but they are both locked in the car. I can’t find my other set.”

(Months ago he lost the house key and hasn’t replaced it which means that when I am gone he must find novel and mysterious ways to enter the house.)

He finally found a loose car key in a pocket or maybe under his bed or in a soup pan and he left, just as The Gutter Men arrived for their second day of guttering.

Eeeh gads. Two different men seen leaving my house on two consecutive days. I scratched my cheek and thought, ‘Umm. How does this look? Fabulous or terrible? Should I be proud or embarrassed?’ I couldn’t decide.

Being with my grandkids and my ex-husband was an intense time. Lovely and challenging and tiring.

After they all cleared out, I went to a party.
My friend Regina had an extravagant, high class afternoon party with catered wine and rich appetizers. It was to celebrate the renovation of her home that had been scorched by our last fire storm.

We all drank lavishly and ate prodigiously, and from her decks watched the rain filled, but stingy, clouds scud by over the vast bowl of sky that covers our valley.

Some of us drank too much.

As we were leaving, a stout, seventy-five-ish, very talented and beloved artist friend, dressed in a vibrant, voluminous turquoise dress, her arms, neck and hair crammed with bangles and bits of colored stone, wove her way over Regina’s redwood bridge, ran into over-drive, hit the path at high speed, twisted her foot and flew and slammed backwards onto her back and butt into a pile of snapping bushes. She broke the bushes very soundly, down to their roots, but thank goodness she didn’t break herself.

We all gasped in shock as we assessed the situation while our friend flapped and rolled on her back in the myrtle bushes. Finally, we unfroze and a number of us grabbed her in different places, counted to three and three, again…and again…and finally hauled her to her feet, while yanking leaves and branches from her hair and jewelry.
All of us, including our Fallen Friend, were puffing and gasping and grateful that all was well.
Now exhilarated, we all agreed that this was the sign of A Very Fine Party, Indeed.

There’s all kinds of fun and personally, I recommend them all:
Tactless Grandkids, Spreading Poop Problems, Ex-Husbands Who Don’t Know Too Much About Little Kids,(Yet) Ex-Boyfriends Who Constantly Lose Keys (and everything else), Gutter Men Who Wonder About The Householder’s Sex Life and Fine Parties That Leave Their Guests Flailing Upside Down In Broken Bushes.

I recommend this kind of fun in any kind of order that suits you….

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