This weekend we welcomed my sister Leisa and her husband Sam. It was her birthday, so we tried to treat them well. It was also a good chance for them to spend quality time with Elena, and I think we made the most of it.
A long nap interfered with our plans to go shopping before they arrived at our house, so we all went together instead. At the first store they helped us to pick a Christmas dress for Elena. At the next store, we used a divide-and-conquer strategy to finish quickly, so that dinner wouldn’t get pushed back any further.
Leisa requested lasagna for dinner, so that’s what we made even though it was already late. With teamwork, we managed to get it on the table at a reasonable time. After dinner Elena wanted to sing and dance, so we joined in with a few rounds of Popcorn Popping and Ring Around the Rosies. But then it was time for bed–Leisa and Sam joined us for family prayer, and Elena gave them big goodnight hugs. After Elena’s bedtime, we played our favorite grown-up games of shape and color: Blokus and Set. Sam and Leisa won pretty easily.
After a breakfast of waffles, and with thanks again to our guests for watching Elena while we finished preparing for church, we headed out, but not before some more dance time, including lots of twirling. At church we once again watched Sam and Leisa ably provide child care. There was one tense moment: while looking at a picture book Elena spotted a cow and did what she normally does–let out a moo at her normal animal-sounds volume, which is loud. Sam turned the page quickly.
In the afternoon we headed to my parents’ house for a family dinner. When we got into separate cars, Elena was sad and gave big hugs to Leisa and Sam. At this point, Sam said something to the effect of “now she’s just angling for better presents!”
Even though Elena struggled on the drive to the grandparents’, she was happy to see them. She wanted to thank Gran Ann in person for her new hand-knitted slippers. They’re just the right size, and she loves wearing them, whether it’s on her bare feet or over layers of socks and pajamas. They’re especially good for twirling.
After dinner, we sat down for a second game night, this time Yahtzee. At first Elena wanted to roll all the dice, but Gran Ann pulled out a box of colored pencils that drew her attention away from the game. As for the game, after I rolled a Yahtzee, I thought I had it in the bag, but Jenny pulled ahead for the win at the end. With that, we said our goodbyes–Elena gave big hugs to everyone.