Last year we visited Grandma for the holidays.
This is what I love about Grandma’s house. The day we arrived she said, “Nothing is breakable in this house that will be missed.”
Which is good because seven minutes after she said that, the twins started fencing with the candles from the centerpiece.
On Christmas Eve she said to my four-year-old, “Let’s bake a birthday cake for Jesus! Shall we bake a yellow cake or a chocolate cake?”
When my daughter dropped the open bag of yellow cake mix all over the kitchen floor, Grandma didn’t skip a beat.
“Well! I guess we’ll make a chocolate cake!”
When the boys banged on the piano, she said, “Look how much fun they’re having!”--a phrase she repeated when the boys tried to lick the dogs.
After a long day at the museum, Grandma calmed our over-stimulated and cranky kids with the magic words: “When we get home, let’s have hot chocolate.”
When one of my sons came down with a fever and suspicious spots, she said, “This is the number of a really good urgent care center.” Two days later when the other son had a fever she said, “I can go to the pharmacy for you.”
When I was busy attending to the sick boys, she read books to my daughter. When I was busy on the phone she put the twins on her lap and watched Elmo videos on youtube with them. She played the movie "My Fair Lady" for the oldest grandchild ("I just know you'll love the costumes," she told her) and walked the dogs with the youngest grandchild.
And when I alluded to the noise level in the living room—the combination of laughing, crying, screaming, and that dancing chipmunk who sings the Macarena—as chaos, Grandma shrugged.
“That’s what families sound like,” she said.