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Carol Perkins: Thanksgiving with the Grandchildren

This is part 2 of a 2 part article. The previous installment is Carol Perkins: On the Road to Family

By: Carol Perkins

Guy and I, along with Carla and Joseph, arrived in Austin by late afternoon on Wednesday. Just as predicted, the Texas grandchildren we waiting at the door. Those hugs made the misery of the trip quickly fade.

Cooking a Thanksgiving meal together has become a tradition with Carla in charge of the grocery list and also in command of who does what. I cook the turkey, which involves a roasting bag. I can't make dressing as good as my friend and caterer Tommy Grissom of Edmonton can, so I took the dressing on ice all the way to Austin. "You're taking dressing to Austin?" Guy said critically.

"If a woman can take a pig on a plane, I can take dressing in a car."

Friday Carla and Beth (Jon's wife) did the Black Friday marathon. Eme and I spend that day going to her favorite stores, which included Learning Express. She pointed to at least a dozen items on her wish list. We spent considerable time in Hobby Lobby. I later heard her tell her mother, "Cici rushed me through the things I wanted to look at so she could look at Christmas stuff." She was right. I should have given the girl more time.

Friday afternoon Jon, Guy, the boys and I went to a small aquarium where children can pet sharks, stingrays, feed birds, and view all kinds of creatures. They ran from one tank to another, sticking their hands in the cold water to touch the head of a baby shark or a stingray with no sting. Joseph's shirt was wet from the bottom up to the neck and I worried he was going to reach over so far he might swim with the sharks.

A lady gave us coins she wasn't going to use so the kids could buy feed and enter the bird sanctuary where colorful little birds flew over their heads and landed on their arms. Eme went in with her cup of feed and within seconds six birds landed on her arms and one on her head. Luke took the cup and the same happened to him. Noah entered the cage and stuck out his little arm for a bird to land on it. They finally found him when he took the grain from Luke. Joseph was having no part of the birds. I was with Joseph on that one. All I could think of was the Bird Flu.

On the way to eat the kids were wound up. Jon has a rule that the kids can only play electronics one hour before bedtime. I had had enough. "Ok, kids, who has their electronics with them?" They started pulling out Kindles and phones and soon the car was silent. "That's how you do it when you've had it," I told Jon.

We headed home Saturday morning and finally reached Carla's Sunday night around seven. We didn't linger long because both Guy and I had to work Monday. We were about half way home when Carla called. "I have bad news." That is never a good way to start a conversation with a parent. "Dad's overnight bag was brought in the house by mistake." His medicine was in that bag. We turned around and drove over an hour back to Brentwood and then home. The last mile of the way seemed to be the longest.

"We're flying next time," I declared. "My neck hurts, my feet are swollen, and my knees are under my chin." I had enough stuff under my feet that my knees were in my face.

Staying home has gotten to be more entertaining than it once was. There was a time when "GO" was my favorite word. Now, I had rather stay at home and wait for the family to come. Three more weeks and they will be here and the Christmas excitement will begin. I hope they bring their electronics.

Carol Perkins, the writer of this popular CM Column, is an author, owner and operator of Main Street Screenprinting, 601 S. Main Street, Edmonton, KY, Phones 270-432-3152 and 270-670-4913 and is co-host of Susan (Susan Shirley Chambers) & Carol (Carol Sullivan Perkins) on 99.1 The Hoss, regularly live at 10amCT, each Tuesday. Watch CM Events for topics/guests on the show.

This story was posted on 2014-12-07 08:23:11
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