Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Banana Pig

My kids are blessed beyond measure.
They've been given two phenomenal grandmothers.

And they could not be more different.

My mom is 6 foot tall, a bundle of energy and adventure, and considers the word "nap" to be akin to dropping the F bomb. If she were a work out, she'd be Billy Blank's "Tae Bo"... in heels. To have fun with her grandkids, she does stuff like have all 11 grandkids (all under the age of 8) help her put up and decorate the Xmas tree without any other adult supervision, then they all sleep on her floor in her bedroom that night.
Like I said, who needs sky diving when you've got adventure like that?!

Nana, on the other hand, is the perfect Yin to Mimi's Yang. 
All slow southern drawl and gentle ease. She considers the word "nap" to be better than most things the world has to offer. She knits and reads and watches old movies. If she were a work out, she'd be a walk through the park...a short one. One in which she would stop multiple times to observe and appreciate some sort of bird or flower or amphibian. Maybe pick up a snake?
I kid you not. You would never guess this gentle grandmother loves reptiles and other slimy things.

My mom? She may have a snake skin purse or heels. And the slimiest thing she handles is hair wax.
Nana actually used to have a pet snake.

For Nana, quality time with the grandkids is usually one on one. While here, she read to the kids and had numerous intimate conversations with my oldest who wanted nothing more than to just sit in her room with her while she relaxed and he talked and she listened. 
She's very good at listening.
And just like that, while she listened and we talked and everyone smiled...she came and went. 
Her 2 weeks with us were refreshing and relaxing and just like we knew they would be.
 God answered our prayers to protect her health during her trip and she felt great the entire time. 
As did we, anytime we looked up from our day to see her there, in our lives, enjoying the little moments with us.

Nana and Joey together
We love Nana like crazy and she is truly one of my very best friends. 
I knew the first day I met her.
I actually went to her house to meet her without Noah, even though we had only been dating a few weeks.
Noah wanted us to meet and she had me over to her house one Saturday. 
She was wearing denim overalls and playing in the creek barefoot with her granddaughter.
They were catching crawdads.
She spoke slow, walked slow, thought slow and I never felt rushed in her presence.
Not once.
It made me feel safe and welcome then.
And it still does.
eating roadside empanadas on the way to the beach

She sat and listened and smiled gently and I got the sense there was no wrong answer.
Only love and acceptance and a warm embrace.
That is still how I feel with her, which may be why we still love to talk so much.
Nana at her favorite place in the world- the beach 
She's still as beautiful as she was when she had her 3 boys. And she still loves the beach just as fervently.
She and Papa Wayne raised their boys going to the beach and it is my guess that they would slap a trailer down in the Outer Banks in a heartbeat if they didn't like their kids and grandkids so daggum much. 
I know that sitting in the sand watching my 3 blond sons run around the beach, collecting sea glass and pointing out crabs, was like reliving her days of motherhood.
Only hers would have probably included one boy tricking another into kicking down a "sandcastle" which was in actuality a brick hidden in a pile of sand.
Not like that ever happened.
Just throwing that out there.
At random.
Her boys were complete gentlemen.
I even got Nana to do Yoga with  me. She really loves me.
And so do her ligaments.

Even better, Nana lets me talk her into almost anything.
I can't talk my mom into many of my crazy ideas.
Nana, who remember doesn't do much uhh, strenuous activity, let me lead her into twisting her feeble old body into a pretzel.
I love her soooo much.

Nana and Joey are getting buried in the surf
Nana and Noah heading to church in Congrejo together

Nana had so much fun meeting the people who we get the opportunity to serve day in and day out.  Since getting home, she has said she still thinks about the people she met almost every day.  It was a great blessing to us for so many people and places we care about to collide. The best may have been when we tried to explain to Madame Clebert what we call Noah's mom. 
"Nana Peg."  Like "Banana" and "pig" but "Nana Peg."
It was a language fail.
As you can imagine.

Nana helps with school

She also jumped into our Ocean unit study, even bringing some old Seashell nature guides along.
I am OBSESSED with books, particularly old books and children's books and nature guides.
Books are only one of the loves Nana and I share.
She was a career librarian and I started a classroom library in the 1st grade with paper cards,stamps and all.
So we have practically the same experience under our belts.
Nana leaving. Sniff,sniff.

We were, of course, sad to see Nana go but we're already looking forward to time with her and Papa Wayne out on their land when we get back to NC.
Quiet space, forest walks, coffee, and some fried fish or any other delicious meal Papa Wayne can throw together.
It'll be grand.

Other than Nana's visit, here are some snippets of things we've been doing over the past couple of weeks.

Most of the time, we have power but about once a month, we randomly lose power for hours a day. It can be annoying, especially when you don't expect it, but it can also force us to slow down and appreciate the simplicity of life.

The boys continue to be blessed by their friendship with our neighbors. Not that they have a lot of fun or anything, but they manage to make it work.

I continue to look older with each passing year...who knew that would happen?!  I knew I had crow's feet in my future but it seems they have crept up on me while still in my youth.  Huh.
I also enjoy carrying around a baby doll head attached to the front of me.

Family time

Aren't they supposed to wait till they are teenagers to be too cool for school?
You may not have your own Banana Pig, but
I hope you are enjoying your summer and getting good quality time with your family and the people who will fill the history of your family memories. 
To God be the glory.
Thank you for keeping up with us.
The Joyners

1 comment:

Team Reed said...

You know crow's feet come from smiling alot...so it is just outward evidence that you are enjoying the life that God has blessed you with! Remember that when you are tempted to be discontent with evidences of aging : ) Love you!!