Thursday, January 25, 2007

Beth is a happy girl and I am a happy mom today. She got an email today from the head guy of accounting at Ole Miss telling her that she was admitted to their doctoral program.

Not sure yet that she will go there but she will be going somewhere. She has worked so hard for this.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Anne and Ken are vacationing in Mexico at a posh resort in the Yucatan. Actually Ken is attending a conference but he gets out at one, I think. They left on Tuesday and will return on Sunday.

I went up to Nashville on Thursday to care for the children and returned home today. Margie Rucker is taking care of them the other times.

When I got to Brentwood on Thursday, I walked right in because no one answered the door. The kids were watching TV in the basement and Margie was taking a bath.

When things got resolved, I took them to their house. Anne had left detailed instructions about food, medicines, pets, emergencies, etc.

For supper, we had carrot sticks, milk, and pizza.

I am reading to them from William Bennett's Book of Heroes. We have already read about Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, Jackie Robinson, Mother Teresa, and others. Some stories are folk tales and myths. We discuss how this is not really true, but that we can still learn a lesson from the story.

They are still young enough not to have too strong a grasp on reality. On Friday we saw a beautiful rainbow all across the sky. Just spectacular. We were in the car going home. They had a conversation in the back seat about leprechauns and pots of gold. I just listened. It seems all three believe in the existence of leprechauns. Emma also believes that there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow if she could just find it. And if she did she would give the money to the poor. The boys do not believe in that pot. Adam and Emma argued and argued about it. Emma thinks she is going to find the gold someday to prove it to Adam.

Friday the weather was iffy. Would it rain or not? I wanted to take them to the Hermitage but not in the rain. I decided to chance it. That was the right decision because it only rained a few drops at the site. The rain held off until it poured while we were eating at McDonald's.

We had discussions on the way over about Andrew Jackson. They could hardly believe that a president had lived so close to them, in Nashville.

Many things have changed since the last time I visited the Hermitage. They have a new visitor center and museum, and also you can visit the upstairs. Now you park next to the visitor center. Thirty years ago you also got to drive down the drive between the trees and parked next to the house.

We saw a short film. We were the only ones in the theater so the children all sat as far from each other as possible.

The house is beautifully kept. Ninety percent of the furnishings are original; they were there when Andrew Jackson was.

Interestingly the piano was very similar to Mother's.

In the hallway is a wallpaper mural. It was ordered custom=made and show Telemachus searching for his father. This was Adam's favorite thing of the day. (Telemachus is another word that I have never before heard pronounced. So, of course, in my mind I have been mispronouncing it for decades.)

George's favorite was the story of the pet bears. The Jacksons' grandchildren Andrew and Samuel let them into the hallway and lied to their grandfather about it. The bears were then released into the wild.

Emma said she liked everything.

It took Jackson 18 days to travel from Washington to Nashville and we talked about how we could do it in hours now.

Anne had warned me that Adam gets very cranky if he goes very long without eating. We had had breakfast and a snack that day but they were getting hungry. I saw a coke machine in a service building so I bought a coke for $2. It was a big one but Adam was irate. He started telling me how much two dollars would buy at Wendy's, McDonald's, etc. Also they did not want to drink the coke because they are only allowed one a week and they had already had one. I told them it was an emergency.

He likes figures and after the talk he figured that Jackson died 161 years ago.

We visited the outbuildings and the burial ground. I don't know where Emma got this but she said the graveyard had a door in it that you could open and see the skeletons. I have no idea what she means or what was said to give her that thought.

On the way home the subject was again allowances. They get seventy-five cents a week. They talk and talk about how much that is a month and a year and how little it is. This subject comes up every trip.

I forgot that Thursday night I took Adam to basketball practice. Because of his syndrome Adam is especially sensitive to pain. I was very proud of him. He got hit in the face with the ball during scrimmage but despite that he brought the ball down the court and made his shot.

Margie came over around noon on Saturday to take over. She was taking Adam to have his basketball pictures made and then all of them were going to Adam's game. Gina also came.

Margie and I talked about taking care of the children. They are pretty good but we are just not used to it. I suppose we would get used to it if we cared for them fulltime but we are used to doing things when we want. We eat when we want to eat. We sleep when we want to sleep. We don't need to consider anyone else. Taking care of children puts them first, very different.

I listened to the Peach Bowl on radio on the way home. Way to go, Georgia. Now if only Florida will beat Ohio State.

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