A new year… It went and happened again, and again I find myself in the position of having a resolution of writing more. It seems a yearly concern, but here goes the latest attempt.
2018 was very kind to the Grady’s. Ethan wrecked a couple of cars, but has now had his latest one for over 6 months without incident (knock on wood). Brandon got a new (to me) car in the form of a 2017 Chevy Malibu - yeah, I can’t seem to break that mold. Hey, they’re nice cars!
We had the extraordinary good fortune of having some time at the end of the year to focus on family and do a little bit of travel. We regretably were unable to join the Grady’s for Christmas this year, but that freed up time for us to spend a little time in the mountains where we rented a condo and did a couple of days of skiing. Mireille was in lessons, and Quinton hit the hill with us. The first couple of days skiing in a season are tough, and this year was no different. Quin was a trooper, but he had a rough first few couple of days. Mireille is suffering a bit from not getting to go enough, and would right now prefer to hang out in daycare. Since that’s cheaper, that seems to be the route we are going, but at some point we will need to invest in her skiing or riding career!
We were also lucky enough to get to spend some time in the Midwest right around New Year’s Day. We got to spend a couple of days with Blaine and Bryce’s family before heading into deep Central Wisconsin where we spent time with Shirley, who continues her path back in time, having gotten rid of satellite TV, internet, and now has decreased the size of her main television to 13". She does now have the modern convenience of gas heat, though, which was nice! It’s always fun to spend time there, particularly where the kids just have to unplug for a few days because there is no other alternative. Mireille and Quin got quite creative, making a store, or a bank, hard to say what it actually was. They continually asked us to come up there and were writing us loans, selling stuff to us, buying stuff from us. At one point, Quinton decided they needed to pull in more money so he convinced Mireille to sing and dance for people - drive up customer traffic. I have videos of it which I will post in time…
As I write these things down, I have serious regrets about not taking notes or blogging these things as they happened. So much fidelity has been lost in these short 5 or 6 weeks… So, recommitment to the cause. There are a couple of noteworthy things that have happened lately that I will share now, in full fidelity.
Last week, we caught Quinton singing to himself. I didn’t think much of it as he typically will do that. Usually he will sing Drake songs, or other hip-hop artists that I know regretably little about (I’m working on it), but this time I was surprised to hear him singing the lyrics to Rick Springfield’s Jessie’s Girl.
It was weird to hear that song coming from him. So we asked him, why was he singing it? He said that it was a “gangster song” and that “gangsters sing it to each other.” Man - kids these days. I can’t think of a more torturous hazing than to have to listen to Rick Springfield. Anyway, it is kind of “cute,” but don’t tell him I said so.
Then, this just happened. I’m catching up while Quinton is at a speed and agility clinic. Just before the session started, he told me about how he was excited because his class was going to be going to “Young America” soon. I might have the name of the place wrong, but the gist is that they learn about government and actually go through some mock exercises and what-not. They get to go with a few other schools as well, so there will be more kids than they are used to interacting with - somewhere near 100. He was excited because he can run for mayor. He is sure he is going to win, because his campaign promise is, and I quote, “Let Trump build the wall - I’m going to tear it down!” His mom will be so proud.
Mireille is skating through kindergarten. She is ahead in a lot of areas, and behind in others. Like she knows how to tie her shoes! I think Ethan was like 12 when he learned to tie his shoes… Her reading is progressing, but I wouldn’t call her ahead in that department. She can recognize some words now, though, so there is hope. One of the hardest things I’ve found about being a parent is my memory and my expectations. Looking back, things seemed so much easier than they are now. Ethan learned to read in like a weekend, I’m convinced! And Quinton always knew how to read!!! So, patience and understanding.
One bit of almost exciting news, Mireille is about to lose her first tooth!!! I will absolutely blog again when she does, and I expect it to be this month. She has a big tooth coming up on the lower part of her mouth. Right now it is behind her other teeth, so it’s not pushing the baby teeth out quite as effectively as it normally would. I’ve been coaching her to “work it with her tongue” though, so hopefully she will give it a little push. Her most sincere desire is to lose it at school because they give out a little tooth-shaped container to take your treasure home with you. I’m just hoping it comes out on its own and I don’t have to be the bad guy and pull it, though I’ve been much better about that with Quinton!
Ethan is now in his final semester of High School. He’s been accepted to 2 of the 3 schools he applied to (he doesn’t care to check on the third for some reason). He’s been filling his time doing more social activities now in his final 3/4 of school, taking in plays, improv shows, basketball games, and the like. He also ran his 4th “Ultrafeast” at the house a couple of weekends ago where he had 13 kids over to play games and to eat a bunch of food. It was nice to have them around, even if they were up entirely too late.
As a family, we have some exciting adventures coming up in the upcoming months, including a couple of smaller trips into the mountains to ski/snowboard, a trip to Utah to do the same, Ethan is going to Seattle with his band, and we have a family vacation planned in Hawaii in June to celebrate Ethan’s graduation. Lots of good bloggable moments that I look forward to sharing with “the world,” or at least with my mom and dad (thanks, dedicated readers).