I spent the last two Christmases in far off India so I was looking forward to a
change of pace and sharing the holiday with my bouncing, cheerful
granddaughter, Harper Ann. While all three of my sons would not be gathered
for the occasion ( Shawn, the oldest, is on Air Force duty in Kuwait ), Jeremy,
my youngest, drove up from San Francisco and we had a special Christmas
eve dinner at Laura and Alex's. Harper Ann, of course, was the star of the
evening in her "waiting up for Santa" pajamas - though she was snug in bed
I added a "baby's first Christmas ornament" with Harper's name on it to the
tree which smelled wonderfully but was fast losing it's needles. At 8-1/2-months,
Harper was easily diverted from the gifts by a shiny red bag filled with gold paper
which kept her amused, no matter how often she reached for it.
Needless to say, with my three sons, football is going to be part of this young lady's
life. Here she is sporting the San Francisco Forty Niners hat her Uncle Jer gave
to Laura. Nicest of all is that Uncle Jer won the fantasy football pool this season
and donated it to start Harper's college fund. I can't imagine what college will
cost when she is a freshman.
Slowly but surely, there is a little bit of hair sprouting on that head. She has bright
blue eyes and, for the most part, she's cheerful and happy - HOWEVER, Harper
can certainly exercise her lungs and let you know when she is displeased.
I just couldn't resist this little outfit - though she only got one day's wear out of
it. After all, there is just one FIRST Christmas in a granddaughter's life. I am so
glad I was home for the occasion.
Much to my dismay, however, early in the wee small hours of Christmas day, as
Santa was still soaring over the tree tops, I'm sure, I woke up with the first twinges
of right flank pain. They kept increasing in severity and, even after medication
and drinking a couple of gallons of water, I knew I was in for a bout of renal colic.
I've had kidney stones for about fifteen years, have had lithotripsy twice withour
success, and have learned to live with them, for the most part. If I stay adequately
hydrated, I'm usually fine but I guess I had been remiss with my water intake.
For most of Christmas day and the next, I stayed in bed, missing most of the
festivities. I did, however, manage to get up long enough for unwrapping of
gifts and enjoying watching Harper Ann tear into the paper, ribbons and nibble
on all the gift tags. While the rest of the family went off for Christmas dinner,
I stayed home with the granddogs and thanked my lucky stars I, at least,
didn't have to head to the emergency room.
"Unlce Jer - sometime I call him Uncle J - says he is going to teach me all the
important things like how to crab and fish and shoot a gun. I ike it because he
reads to me from the Spanish books my mom buys. He speaks Spanish
better than Dad or Nana."
"I know Nana was glad to have a granddaughter...she tells me that all the time.
I think she is worn out from having three sons. Besides, I can wear cute clothes
like purple hats. I like all my presents but I really liked chewing on the tags."
"Nana REALLY does take a lot of pictures...not just of me but of everything."
"Ohhhh, I knew this was a Spanish book - "El Camioncita Azul" or something
like that - because Mom said Uncle J had to read it to me. Nana said that,
someday, he will take me to Barcelona, one of her favorite cities or, maybe,
even to Cuba!"
Well, that was my Christmas. I hope all of you had a wonderful holiday and that
it did NOT include coal or kidney stones.
Blessings and may 2014 be filled with love, properity, happiness and peace.