wings and things

Would you rather …?

The storybook that my mother, Meg, read from on her 8oth birthday cruise last weekend was one of her grandson’s favourites when he was little. (Thanks Morgan!) Here is a link to it on youtube

Meg brought the book with her and insisted that all of the grandchildren sit on the floor of the boat despite the fact that half of them are now in their 20s and even the youngest (12-year-old twins) are close to 6 feet tall. Then she began to read and something rather magical happened as they were all catapulted back in time and transformed into giggling little kids in the thrall of Grandma. One of the most hilarious moments was when my mother said to one grandson, in her best school teacher voice, “Rohan, pay attention!” Everyone collapsed into laughter as this big ‘boy’ – now a husband and father – obeyed. Then everyone competed, hands raised, to answer the questions posed on each page of the book.



In googling information about this storybook, I discovered that “Would you rather …?” has become a bit of a party game and I can see why! It was one of the highlights of a perfect day.


Out of the mouths of babes….

This group of quotes for Gma’s birthday book does not need any explanation from me.






There are more quotes to come of course – from some of the bigger ‘kids’ – but I will save those for tomorrow night after the boat cruise. Suffice it to say that these children’s words, enclosed in her book (and rather brilliantly photographed by me – ha!) have culminated in the most beautiful, mutual, unshakable hug of family.

Oh, I can’t resist: here is Jared’s (Meg’s second grandchild):



Rowing the boat!

My mother’s 80th birthday is happening soon!
We are all going on a boat cruise lunchy thing in a few weeks.

Over twenty of us –
That’s my two brothers and me,
our spouses,
plus all of our kids,
plus my nephew’s wife,
and my niece’s husband,
one newish grandkid (very special),
the boys’ girlfriends, the girls’ boyfriends,
someone who knows how to row the boat!

Idiotically (I am not the least bit art-and-crafty) I suggested putting together a book for ‘Grandma’. I solicited quotes and photos from all grandchildren, very successfully, and now I am covered in glue and ink, and know the difference between a portrait and a landscape photograph.

Ming came into my writing room tonight to find the recent neat-and-tidiness chaotic with the ‘casualty’ photos all over the floor.

Me: I love doing this, Ming! Grandma is going to be thrilled!

Ming (backing away cautiously): Mum, I’m on my way out, okay? I’m not interested in whatever you are doing here because it just looks like a mess to me. Bye!

Anyway, I am having a huge amount of fun with the Grandma book and it is comforting to know that if that boat-cruisy boat falters, Grandma will probably row us back to shore ….