Boys and Girls

Isn’t it interesting how families seem to have more boys than girls, more daughters than sons, or more guys than gals? In our blended family we have 4 girls and 2 boys, 4 grandsons and 7 granddaughters, 1 great granddaughter and 2 more on the way (due in April and May). Thommmee is 1 of  5 brothers and 2 sisters, I am 1 of 4 sisters and 2 brothers.

In our more local/ immediate family we seem be surrounded by girls. As a result, I spend time with the girls in efforts of cooking, sewing, shopping, etc. We all spend time together camping, vacationing, playing games, barbequing,  beach trips, and a multitude of birthday parties. When it comes to doing ‘guy’ things, however, I have often felt that I fell short. I recently decided to make more of an effort to participate in some of the things that they enjoy. Surprisingly (or not) we actually ended up having a really good time.

A few weekends ago my 16 year old grandson and I made plans to attend an outdoors/sportsman event near me.  We were both really excited to spend this time together but honestly I was a bit apprehensive that I would disappoint him or he would be bored hanging out with grandma. Although we are very close and enjoy a very special bond, we are usually a part of a group since he has become a teenager. He lives about 30 miles away and this would also be his first trip managing the congested Southern California freeways by himself. On a Friday afternoon he headed my way as soon as he got out of school and arrived at my house about 3:30. I had decided to just go with whatever I would normally do so we quickly got busy making strawberry jam. Now, I realize this might not be a 16 year old boy’s idea of fun but I figured it was still hanging out with grandma so…. It was fun and he learned a thing or two about making jam.  Since it was Valentine’s Day weekend, we took a jar of fresh jam and decorated it for him to give to his girlfriend ( along with his other special mementos).

While I cleaned up, he went outside with Poppa (Thommmee) to barbeque some steaks and veggies. I made potatoes and garlic bread.  After dinner we settled down to play some board games and cards. We baked brownies. We talked. We laughed.  Eventually Poppa was ready for bed but we sat up and talked well past my  bedtime. We really shared with each other and I will treasure that evening forever.

Early the next morning the three of us were up laughing and talking over pancakes and bacon (which is enough to make anyone happy-right?) We didn’t invite Poppa or anyone else to go along on this trip so the two of us headed off to the event. Now, I don’t know what I expected, maybe a bunch of dudes in overalls chewing tobacco or some other foolish notions of what hunters, gun carrying survivalists might look like (sorry if I offended anyone here-I am somewhat a sheltered urban raised girl ). Anyway, it was mostly men (hey ladies, the ultimate place to meet a guy maybe?), normal looking people, a few women, and even a few families. Nonetheless, I am fairly certain I was the only proud grandma accompanied by her handsome 16 year old grandson. We had a great time but for me this was a one time event (just the show not the grandson).

Encouraged by this adventure, the following weekend I offered to take Thommmee to the Gold and Treasure show at the Fairplex (formally know as the LA Fairgrounds). He loves to watch all of those treasure hunting, prospecting, gold digging type shows so he was all in! (maybe this is where I got that stereo-type idea of the outdoorsmen?) They were selling all types of  machines, gizmos,  and every sort of prospecting gear you could imagine. They even sold dirt and a dirt of the month club membership so you could pan for gold in the privacy of your own home…really? Again, mostly men but more women and families at this event…..normal people! I think get these ideas from the shows Thommmee watches. They must pick extremes types to keep the shows interesting.

OK. I tried. I love the outdoors. If you read my blog you know I love to camp, I sleep in a tent and cook outdoors. These two weekends were a bit of a stretch for me but these men  appreciated my willingness to try something new and I got to spend time with these great guys.  I am not complaining at all. Next weekend our church is having a ladies afternoon tea which I will be attending. Not sure this is a fit for me either. I like my jeans, sneakers and bracelets. Perhaps I am someplace in between but I would like to keep an open mind.

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17 thoughts on “Boys and Girls

  1. I think spending time with the people you love has to be good – and even if we now know what we do and don’t like [it comes with ‘life experience’ doesn’t it?] giving a bit doesn’t hurt either. I am super impressed your 16 year old grandson likes hanging out and confiding in you, that is some good family vibes right there!!

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  2. I know! Me too. I’m so shocked that he likes to hang out with me. We’ve always had a special bond. A few years ago I said pretty soon you won’t want to hang out with Grandma and he looked at me and said, why wouldn’t I? Sigh, it really is the people in our lives isn’t it?

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  3. You are one lucky grandma. Someone was well raised. Spending time with a teenage grandson is such a blessing. I’ve gone to events that weren’t my favorite to spend time with someone I loved. You never know what you can get out of such a excursion. I love a good tea and I’m not all that prissy either. It’s just a fun experience. Hope you enjoy it.

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  4. I do know how lucky I am. I am very thankful for all of the kids/grandkids but this guy and I have always had a very special connection. I do try to be a good sport and go along. After all, relationships are give and take aren’t they? Thanks, Marlene, I am actually looking forward to the tea.

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  5. Sounds like you have been broadening your horizons! You taught your grandson about making jam, and he was able to share with you too. I think having so many different experiences helps you relate to more people- from those who get a monthly dirt shipment to those who wear pearls to tea. Go ahead- wear a bold lipstick to tea and have fun!

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  6. It sounds like you had a wonderful weekend with your grandson. Both of you broadened your horizons.

    I too have more experience with girls. I have one sister and three daughters, so when the grandsons came along, I was unprepared. (I do have one lovely granddaughter.) The first grandson, who is now nineteen, is the math wizz, computer-expert type. He loves to play cards and board games. When I play with him, I always lose, but it’s fun. My seven-year old grandson is into lego and soccer.

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  7. Love this post. It just sounds like you had such a nice time with him. The kind of quality time I wish I could have with my daughters sometimes, but they are busy, etc so maybe it will have to be my future granddaughter! xx Nancy

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  8. Thank you Nancy! We did have a great time together. The bond with grandchildren is so different than with children. Having many of each I can’t say it’s better….. I can just say that each relationship is special and I treasure them all.

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