Sunday, February 5, 2012

To be a little girl again...

I got to spend a couple of days with my parents. I felt like a precious, treasured little girl again. Sometimes my life gets so hectic and crazy, with so many responsibilities. What a gift to have someone fussing over me, reminding me how to do things. I felt pampered and a little girl again, but only in all the very best ways.

For example...

When they pick me up at the airport, they make sure I ride "shot gun" in the front seat. Mom sits in the back so I can have the honored place in the car. Dad does a dry run drive to the site of my seminar in the morning. He wants to make sure I can find my way, and he stops at the hotel where my seminar will be held so I can go in and find out where to park.

Their home is small, so I sleep in the "guest house," their travel trailer. At bedtime, when I head out the door to my little hideaway, my mother asks me if I have a flashlight. No, I assure her there is plenty of moonlight and I'm only walking 30 feet across the driveway to the trailer. Dad doesn't pester me about a flashlight, but he follows me out the front door and stands on the porch to make sure I arrive safely.

When I need to borrow their car to drive to my seminar in Spokane (the reason I got to go visit them in the first place), Dad makes sure the car is filled with gas. He gives me a hand-drawn map to make sure I know how to get to the highway. I almost remind him that Mark and I have driven that route a number of times, but I feel so precious and protected that I only tell him thank you, and I'll be careful to go the right way. Mom packs a lunch for me.

For crying out loud, I am 57 years old and almost in tears at their tenderness. I wish we didn't live so far apart. I wish I could take care of them sometimes. But I am thrilled at their independence and zest for every day. I love being their daughter. I love the way they raised me. And sometimes, just for a couple of days, I am so blessed to be their little girl again.

They live in the mountains north of Spokane. It's a 9-hour drive away from us (I flew this time). Even though I wish they didn't live so far away, I completely understand their love of this beautiful area. This is the view they see every day.

 Most of their heat comes from the wood stove. They haul, split, and stack their wood themselves. Great exercise! Dad brings more wood from the shed to the house every day.

Dad has rigged up his "Rube Goldberg contraption" to get the wheelbarrow up onto the porch. That takes good balance and eye-hand coordination...muscles, too!

Mom and I posed for a minute in front of Dad's woodpile on the porch.

 They have a beautiful, iconic barn on the hillside behind their home. On Saturday morning, the snow-covered pasture called to me, beckoning me outside to play! The neighboring rancher has installed a gate in the fence behind their house into the hillside meadow, so it was easy to slip through and go for a little hike.

 The snow was perfect for an outing. Just crunchy enough to not be slushy, but not icy or slippery. What a glorious day!

From the barn, looking back down on Mom and Dad's "ranch" - the green roofs in the center of the photo. It makes me breathe more peacefully to just look at this photo and remember the view, the beautiful valleys and mountains, and the tender visit I had with my parents.


Marilyn said...

Thank you, Kathy, for posting the beautiful pictures of Uncle Ken, Aunt Nancy and their gorgeous home. They are so dear and loving...I totally enjoyed our visit with them at Charlie's and Emily's wedding. Now I can picture ithem both iwith my mind's eye amid that lovely view.

Finding My Way Softly said...

What a wonderful visit! I am so glad they got to have the time with you. I miss seeing them very often, but I am so glad to at least have phone calls.

Thanks for the great pictures! It is a beautiful scene! I am so glad that you got to have such a beautiful hike!

Dorothy said...

My mother still tries to mother me, too. Last week she handed me a clipping about a vitamin to take for thinning hair. Ummm...thanks, Mom. :)

I agree with the others. How lovely to see photos of those dear people and in such a beautiful place! I'm so glad that I know them, too.

Polly @ Helping Little Hands said...

Nana and Granddad are always such nice hosts. I'm so glad you were able to go and spend some time with them.

Annemarie said...

What a sweet post. I absolutely adore your parents, even though I have never met them. You've been so good to share them with your readers over the years, and I admire their zest for life. I'm sure it was a treat for them to have you come stay--how lucky that your conference was close to where they live.