Sunday, June 14, 2015

We're Not Getting Older, We're Just Ripening!

My husband and I just got back from a week-long trip out to the Midwest.  Our first stop was the University of Notre Dame, where we attended his 35th college reunion.  We had a blast.

It was sort of an eye-opener, though, to realize that we truly are no longer spring chickens.  One of the days there was a class Mass, and when we got to the assigned chapel I looked around and whispered in my husband's ear, "I think we're in the wrong place."  I thought, This must be the class of 1970 or something; these people surely didn't graduate OUR year.

There had to be some mistake, because everyone there looked sort of, you know, old.  Sort of like a bunch of grandparents.

But oh that's right--my husband and I are grandparents!  (Hello, mirror.  Have we met?  My name is Grammy and shocker, I know, but I am not a 25-year-old.)  The awakening was rude, my friends.  Because while my best guy and I cherish our roles as Papa and Grammy more than life itself, we sometimes forget that with this privilege comes advanced age.

Enough about that.  You're as young as you feel.  (Or you can keep telling yourself that!)

Anyway, after a wonderful weekend, spent attending all the events with one of my hubby's freshman year roommates and his lovely wife, we headed to MI to spend some time with our oldest son's family.  Because, as I noted above, we are grandparents.  And visiting our grandchildren is the joy of our lives.

Here are some pictures of our three oldest grandchildren, identical twins Bonny Babe and Cutie Pie (4) and Little Gal (2) at a nature center near their home, where they got all wet and sandy and had a perfectly glorious time.

Thanks to his airline job and the perk of non-revenue stand-by tickets, Papa and I have been so fortunate when it comes to seeing our precious grandchildren on a fairly regular basis, despite the distance that separates us from them.  We wouldn't want them to have enough time in between visits to forget us...however, that isn't really a worry when it comes to the twins.  Because not only do they remember everything (and I mean everything), but apparently, we leave our scent behind.

Cutie Pie actually said that to me this past week, out of the blue:  "Grammy, you always leave your smell behind."

Thank you?  I think?  ( this a good thing?  Because I'm not sure it sounds like a good thing.)

The girls have long had this habit of snuggling up close and sniffing us, saying, "I want to smell you!"

One day while we were there, I had gone out for a bit.  I returned to the house and was on my way up the stairs, when suddenly Cutie Pie was behind me.  She wrapped her arms around my waist and said, "I want to see your smell."  I stopped, and then she sniffed my skirt and said, "Ahh, that's great!"

"Hmm," I said to my daughter-in-law Regina.  "What is this odor I give off, anyway?"

She laughed and said, "I think they smell your perfume, or Dad's cologne."  Guess what, though?  Neither of us wears any artificial scent like that.  That smell is all us, baby.  Us, combined with soap, shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste, and laundry detergent.  Not to mention a bit of ripening.

Lest you think only one of the twins is this way when it comes to a heightened sense of smell, that is not the case.  One day this past week, Bonny Babe sniffed the love seat in the family's living room (where Papa had been sitting with her the night before, reading a book to her) and proclaimed with excitement: "This couch smells like Papa!"

I choose to take this obsession with the way we smell as a compliment.  After all, at least we know that when we're not there with them, we leave behind something for them to remember us by.  If love has a scent, I hope that's what they smell.


  1. This is the best smelling post I have ever read!! :) Really, I enjoyed it a lot. It made me think of the scene in the Parent Trap movie, when one of the twins (hmmm... is smelling a twin thing??) is sniffing her grandfather and saying she's making a memory. I seem to remember her saying he smelled like peppermint and pipe tobacco.

    1. This was one of my favorite comments of all time, Nancy. You really made me smile. :D

      I've seen both the old and new versions of "The Parent Trap," and I had forgotten that scene!!! But when I read your comment to my husband, he said, "Oh yeah, that's right! I remember that now."

      I think I know what our next Netflix choice is going to be...

  2. I was totally thinking of the "Making a memory" scene too. "The peppermint is for my indigestion. And the tabacco ... Is to make your grandmother mad." One of my favorite movies!! (The Hayley Mills not Lindsey Lohan) Such sweet girls you have in your life.

    1. It's been so long since I've seen the Haley Mills version, I've forgotten most of it. Must rent it!

  3. This is so sweet! I love the comments about not being in the right place ....We went to the movies Saturday night to see Jurassic World, and the guy in front of us turned around and started talking about being old, and isn't it great that we saw the first movie, these young kids don't understand, etc, etc. And I was a little stunned that he picked us to talk to about being old ... until I realized, Oh Yeah - we are old!! LOL

    1. That's so funny! So you know just how I felt when it suddenly dawned on me: we're old!

  4. Too cute! My youngest child has never had a special blanket or stuffed animal or anything. She never even took a binkie. Instead, when she needed comfort, she'd hug my arm and rub her nose up and down it smelling me and looking up at me adoringly. Once she learned to talk she'd tell me, "Mommy you smell goooooooood." She's almost 6 now and still has to smell my arm every once and a while when she's having a bad day or is really tired.

    I've heard that smell triggers more memories than any other sense- so your grand daughters really will never ever forget you. They know your scent so well!

    1. Kari, thanks so much for this comment!! It really struck a chord with me. Because you know, our boys were like your daughter, all five of them: they had no special blankies, no stuffed animals they had to take to bed with them; they were never interested in using a pacifier once they got past about two months old. They didn't have any of the typical "comfort" items. I used to wonder about that, when I'd see other little ones dragging their "must-haves" around with them. Now I'm thinking maybe our boys were going in for comforting sniffs--and were comforted by the smell of us, but they just weren't very vocal about it! :)