Friday, December 23, 2005

The Difference Between Parents and Grandparents

The other night Tracy's parents came over to see the grandkids. Tracy and I had been trying to feed the kids their solid food dinner, and it wasn't going well.

"Eugene," Tracy sternly told our son, "I can't get the spoon in there when you close your mouth."

"See?" she said to me with exasperation, pointing at Little Eugene with the spoon. "He's closing his mouth before I get the spoon all the way in. Half the food goes in his mouth, half the food gets all over his face!"

"I know," I told her. "He's been doing that for the past couple of days. It's driving me crazy, too."

"Here, look at Olivia," I said to Tracy, as food dripped down her face and on her bib. "I can get the spoon in there fine, but the food gets pushed out again because Olivia keeps sticking her tongue out!" I exhaled deeply in frustration.

Just then Ed and Aleene arrived. I asked them if they would you like to feed the kids some dinner. They eagerly said yes, each taking a seat in front of one of the kids. We were ready for a break, and quickly got out of the way.

"Have fun!" I said sarcastically, content to watch someone else get frustrated for a while. But, that's exactly what they did. They smiled and made goo-goo faces, which these previously uncooperative children reciprocated. The feeding continued.

"Oh, look Ed! Olivia keeps sticking her tongue out and it's getting food all over her face," my mother-in-law said with a laugh.

"Look, look," she said laughing. "She's doing it again!"

"You're just as bad as your brother," my father-in-law playfully told his granddaughter. "He keeps closing his mouth before I can get the spoon in!"

Aleene looked over and laughed. "He's got food all over the place!" she said.

This went on and on. Tracy and I stared in bewilderment. We eventually looked at each other.

"Isn't this the same behavior that we were pulling our hair out over just ten minutes ago?" I asked my wife.

"I think it is," Tracy told me.

"So, what's the difference?" I asked her.

"I guess it's the difference between parents and grandparents," she said.


Blogger Amy said...

God bless the grandparents. Without my parents, we'd be stark raving mad by now.

11:00 PM, December 23, 2005  
Blogger CINDY said...

I just found your blog. You have beautiful babies! I'm a grandmother to g/g twins. The word "grand" in grandchildren could not be any more fitting unless it was "ultimate-joy".

9:14 AM, December 31, 2005  
Blogger Gene said...

AMY: We couldn't do it without them. Friends of ours have twin 2 year old girls, and the nearest grandparents are 2 hours away. Yikes!

CINDY: Thanks for the compliment. They are beautiful babies. And I'm not just saying that because they're mine. Other people have said so. My dad tells me that all the time;)

A coworker of mine summed up grandparenting best with a t-shirt he got after his first granddaughter was born. It read: IF I HAD KNOWN GRANDKIDS WERE THIS MUCH FUN I WOULD HAVE HAD THEM FIRST.

12:59 PM, December 31, 2005  

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