My grandmother Manny just knows how to live.
She turned to me the other night with a magazine on her lap and a bowl of ice cream in her hand. She gestured to the open window.
"The breeze is so nice," she said. "I have something to read. Life just doesn't get much better than this."
When Manny left after a two day visit, Haven cried.
"I am poor," he said. "I am poor because Manny went home."
And of course, like all mothers, I find my children's wisdom profound. In this instance, it is also fitting. Manny has always found her wealth in people, especially her family. She has always lived simply but has put out tons of energy to spend time and make memories with her kids, grand kids and now great grand kids.
This week it was wild blueberry picking, book discussions on the couch with Haven, a trip to the lake and a bit of babysitting so Pete and I could go out -- what fun!
We have definitely established a new ritual called "Visits from Grandma Manny" and I hope they'll be often -- perhaps the next one should be at harvest time. We could carve pumpkins.
Other highlights from Manny's visit:
-- "Do you think Denzel got a permanent?" she asked as we watched The Great Debaters.
-- Yummy noises after each bite, intermingled with "This is WONDERFUL!" at every meal (I promise, I love this; I don't get many "thank you's" around here unless they're demanded).
-- Mesmerizing little boys with 30+ years of kindergarten teacher reading experience -- using character voices, engaging them in thoughtful discussions -- "Now, why did the little engine chug over the hill?"
If you're reading this, Manny, come back when the leaves start to change.
We can't wait!