Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Mile High Return

Unfortunately, three of our five grandchildren live in Colorado. Of course, they wouldn’t have it any other way and they’re probably never moving to Minnesota. So to see them Sharon and I have to jump on a plane and fly to the mile high city. It’s been an ever-evolving process with them getting older with each visit.

Over the years, our trips have evolved and changed as the kids have grown and developed their own set of interests and daily activities. The LaComb household has morphed from its earlier years of daily naps, playground time, and early sports ventures into traveling teams, advanced gymnastics and one of the top soccer teams for her age category in the state.

My, how things have changed. There used to be naps in the afternoon or at least some periods of quiet time. Not anymore. The kids and their parents are throttled up and moving every hour of the day. As the ‘grandparents,’ Sharon and I just follow directions, traipse along and ask what is happening in the next hour. I probably have sat on the sidelines of every major soccer and lacrosse field in the greater Denver metropolitan area.

There is no longer time to venture north to visit boulder; a loss for me. We haven’t been back to our old familiar stomping grounds lately. But it’s been replaced by Saturday morning garage sales, Starbucks coffee nearby, cooking and art classes at home.

Then there is always plenty of fresh air on the sidelines of innumerable sporting events including gymnastics, soccer, swimming competition, lacrosse and the occasional triathlon for all three kids.

Since our ‘dress up dinner’ was such as success with the Minnesota grandchildren this summer, Sharon decided to do the same in Denver.

We went to ‘Brio,’ an upscale Italian Mediterranean cuisine restaurant nearby. That meant a sport coat and suspenders for Spencer, fancy new dresses for Maya and Samantha and a hairdo for Sammi that made her look ten years older (at least in the eyes of her ‘papa’).

Dress up dinners are  always a great way to teach the children about table manners, ordering food, asking questions of the waiter and behaving properly as young children should in that setting. Unfortunately all five grandchildren have taken to the fancy restaurant settings, interesting foods and refined environment which can only hint of the foodie adventures ahead for all of them. They must have gotten that quality from their Nana. It certainly didn’t come from Papa.

Brian showed us his data center. No photos were allowed but sufficient to say it was a large room with more computer power than most of us could comprehend.

A couple of years ago, Sharon began introducing cooking classes as well as art classes to all of the grandkids. They took to the various painting techniques like children to recess. This time around Sharon only had time for teaching several new painting techniques to the kids. They used gauze and string along with alcohol ink and acrylics to create some interesting masterpieces.

It’s been fascinating to watch the LaComb family change and evolve as the grandchildren get older. As the grandparents, Sharon and I have become the sideline cheerleaders, morning coffee companions, ‘treasure seekers’ at garage sales and drivers for a lot of sporting events. (It must been universal, there are seldom if ever games close together or at the same time.) That means carpooling, separate trips and the necessary logistics that would make UPS proud. It’s all part and parcel for a trip for mile high adventures.

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