Sunday, 27 April 2014

Meeting Lena

Reading: The Casual Vacancy by J. K. Rowling (it's a slow journey through a book when you are taking care of a five-month-old)
Listening to: Katy Perry's "Roar"
Outside: Overcast but little twinkles of sun every now and then

So to explain my blog-neglect - and all apologies of course - this past week my beloved and I hosted my parents who flew all the way from Indianapolis, Indiana, to Doncaster, England (via Manchester of course), to meet little Lena Jellybeana for the very first time.

So, I have been busy.

In addition to all the normal run-around-like-a-headless-chicken things that I do when my parents visit (including but not limited to: cleaning the silverware drawer, shampooing the carpets, bleaching the bathtub and washing every window inside and out - bird poop and other natural occurrences out of my control be damned), I now had a Little Baby to fluff up and fuss over. She demanded her normal needs during my time of hectic preparation; feeding, nappy changes, cuddles. She did not know what her mother was doing, and looked on in half-interested bafflement as I raced around the house, taking out the trash "one last time," and using baby wipes on every visible surface in our house.

Little One did not know that at six o'clock on Thursday evening she would meet her Hoosier grandparents for the first time.

But I did.

Amid the scurrying and scouring, I paused just long enough to consider that every ounce of elbow grease expended was going toward a very, very special moment. Part of me knew that my exhaustion (a good, clean kind of tired) would equal a disinfected and apricot-scented home.

I had lots of things to consider. What would we do with our visiting parents? Dine out? See a film? Compare and contrast Yorkshire and Hoosier weather? Discuss the Royal Family? Play charades? Boggle?

Requests, anyone? (Picture from here.)

But you know what? I finally figured out that I could only scrub so much, and only plan so much - I would need to let go and let life take its course, and indeed it did.

In the end, my beloved and I enjoyed a fabulous time with my parents, and so did Little One. And despite all my worry that Lena may not take to them, not knowing them except as foreign voices over the phone and smiling faces on Skype video chats, by the second day of their visit our baby was perfectly happy for Grandma and Grandpa Hoosier to snuggle, feed and otherwise happily fuss over a new generation of Buckland.

Patty-cake, story time, and oh-wow-she's-holding-her-bottle! commenced.

And so, this just goes to show. A clean kitchen and a Victorian piano sing-along don't mean everything. All it takes is a baby's smile to make a grandparent's day (or week, or month, or year).

Now it's my turn to hold Lena's hand and tell her all about the Indiana woods and the Alabama sky: the warm wide places a jet plane will take her soon, soon, soon. More very special grandparents and family await their first meeting with a very British little girl.

Happy Sunday, everyone.

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