10 Best Things About The Summer of 2012/Part One

Well, I am stealing my daughter’s blog idea.  I have not blogged in so long that I think I need to steal something to get myself started again.  Then…watch out…I hope it will be the springboard into non-stop blogging again.  Be that here at A Grandmother’s Blessings, Blessed Daily or Grace, Gratitude and The Labyrinth.  I want to be able to say, I am on a roll again.

And so…the summer of 2012.  I will post 10 pictures and see where that takes me.Image

Number One — Swimming was one of the big hits of the summer.  Note Sojo’s “swimming costume”…she has a bit of British in her, I guess.  She is in love of all things “Angry Birds” right now, so a “swimming costume” with that, along with her swimming cap was right up her alley.  And the sleeves and pants were perfect for our bright and hot Arizona summer sun.  It helped protect her beautiful skin.

By the end of their stay, we rated the day on whether it was a “one swim day, a two swim day or on that last day, a four swim day”.  There were morning swims, afternoon swims, after dinner swims and night-time swims.  There were stay in the shallow end because Popo and Gong Gong are on watch or a free for all if her parents or uncles were in the pool.  We were amazed at how her swimming progressed over the weeks they were here.  Goes to show, practice makes perfect.


Number TwoQuiet Early Morning Chats

Before Mama and Baba got up, Sojo would often go outside with Ron or me.  We talked about the birds and lizards and whatever might jump into her little mind.  More often this was with Gong Gong, since he is the early bird in this house after her. He would have her favorite TV show ready to go and bacon cooking away, just the way she liked it.


Number Four — All The Chicks In The Nest

I think this is my all time favorite day of the summer, when the entire Russell Clan (right down to that wee one who will soon make his way into the world hiding behind his Mommy’s belly and his Daddy’s hand) was able to get together and wander on up the winding road to Mt. Lemmon.  Here we are at Windy Point…somewhere around half way, where you can go out onto the rocks overlooking the city.  I especially like this as Sojo has her running suit on.  It was the middle of the 2012 Olympics and she was right into.  I think she thought it quite proper to be wearing this to a mountain top and it appears from the picture that she must have won the race up. The best of it all…the mountain and the city and the entire family.  When the family nest is full, I am content in ways that nothing else can top. Not even that mountain top.


Number FourFred Two, aka, Fred Too

Years ago we had a Desert Tortoise that we named Fred.  He was a dear and we all loved him.  The kids had wanted a dog and Ron found Fred crossing Catalina Highway one day and afraid that he would meet his demise, brought him home and announced to the kids that he had brought them home a “dog”.  They humored him and it wasn’t hard since Fred was so darn cute.  He loved to wander around the back yard and we fed him ripe, juicy, ruby colored Prickly Pear fruit every summer.  He got to used to it, that when he wanted one he would crawl up onto our patio and bang his little nose on the glass door.  We rescued Fred a few times, floating on his back in the pool and knew we weren’t supposed to have him with a pool.  Fred would burrow somewhere in the back yard every fall and every spring would pop up on the patio.  Talk about a low maintenance pet.  I can’t talk about how he met his demise.  It is too painful, but let’s just say we missed him and always wanted another Fred.

Enter, Fred Two, aka, Fred Too.  I was going out one morning and lo and behold there he was crossing our street at the corner.  Now, I was afraid he would get smooshed by a car not paying attention and I know how much Sojo wants a pet and being allergic to cats, dogs and birds, makes that a bit of a problem.  You can’t touch a fish and they don’t make any sound and they tend to somehow go “belly up” far too often.  So, I thought another Fred would be the perfect solution.  She could take care of him this summer and I could even Skype with him later on in the year.  When she came home that day she was thrilled.  We picked the juicy Prickly Pear fruit for him, carefully with tongs and her Baba helped us turn an old garden area into a small habitat that would keep him from falling into the pool.  Or, so we thought (no worries…he did not drown).  Then…darned if there wasn’t an article in the newspaper about how we should “never” take a Desert Tortoise from the desert.  You can however, adopt one from a rescue center.  But, just picking one up off the street, is really frowned upon.  It appears it really upsets them and they can die from it.  So, much to Sojo’s sadness, we decided to take him into the desert and let him be free again where he can walk among the wild and eat greens and things to his little heart’s content.  I personally think what we fed him was far better and he wouldn’t have to look for water, we could have made sure his little bowl was full all the time.  But, he had also managed to escape his habitat and in addition to the fact we were doing something frowned upon by the authorities, we were afraid he would fall into the pool.  Sojo understood, even though she was disappointed.  So, if you see Fred out in the desert…say hi to him for us.


Number Five The Well Informed Five Year Old

Imagine coming out into the kitchen and seeing your 5-year-old grand-daughter reading the morning paper.  I am still not sure what possessed her to do this, but she sure had me going.  I was sure she was going to give me the front page news and what might be on page 8 too.  Maybe she was checking to see who had won gold medals in London that day.  Maybe she had just seen her Gong Gong reading the paper.  Who knows.  I just know that I am sure she found something of interest and importance in there.  And she made me smile one more time.




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