Now that we’ve been here for a few weeks, we’re settling into a schedule. I stay close to work Mondays and Tuesdays, but make a quick trip to see Jenny and the kids on Wednesday evening. Thursday mornings I wake up extra early so I can make it to work on time, then head back to them for the weekend as soon as my work week is over on Friday afternoons. It’s not ideal, but at least I am with my family more evenings than not, and when I’m with them I’m more aware of my desire to be present and involved, not distracted.
Jenny, Elena, and Roman are adjusting well to their new living circumstances, although the transition has not been completely smooth. Elena, in particular, took some time getting used to living with her grandparents. Now she loves to play with them, and Grandma has clearly spent lots of time and effort acquiring just the kinds of toys and items that grandchildren love. Every time I go back there, it seems like she’s produced some fun new thing from a closet or storage area. It’s amazing, because I’ve looked in those storage area and know that there are still plenty of surprises in store.
The opportunity to spend time with Jenny’s family and friends was one of the main things we were looking forward to about this trip. Thus far, it’s certainly living up to our expectations. Most importantly, Jenny, Elena, and Roman get to spend time with Grammies (Jenny’s grandmother) at least twice a week. Since Grammies lives with Jenny’s brother Paul, that also means that we get to see him and his family on a regular basis; Elena always loves getting together with cousins. As we get in touch with other people, mostly Jenny’s friends from when she was younger, our social calendar is filling up with other plans as well. Many of them also have young children, which means more friends for Elena and Roman!