Fond Memories

The Child I wrote about in “Child-Proofing” in December has come and gone (almost two weeks ago by now). Our schedule pretty much revolved around hers for 4 ½ days. We read stories, ate together, watched short videos my sister (her grandma) had brought, and she played with misc. items when sitting in the booster seat at the table, which was one of her favorite places – it was like her “office”. We got out the rhythm instruments and found she loved dancing to a good beat.

We tried to get things done while her daddy put her down for naps. She pretty much respected the boundaries I’d created (cloth hiding shelves, etc.), and we showed her which cupboards had the pans she could play with, and where “her” corner was, complete with a doll napping in a crate-bed – modeling behavior we hoped to see! She spent quite a lot of time at the kitchen sink “washing” dishes.

Unfortunately it was quite cold the entire time, so we didn’t do much outdoors. We bundled up for outings to visit Great-grandma Hope every day, and went out to eat once.

Although I am mostly relieved to have my life and my house back, I kind of miss the little tyke. But am glad we have some photos to show my mom, to jog her memory about who was here and why.

What’s your fondest memory of someone who has visited you?

34 thoughts on “Fond Memories”

  1. sending my daughter back to chicago on the 6 am plane makes that my favorite one at the moment

    i remember a visit from a california couple when i was about your visitors age bir

    ma and pa sweeney from van nuys california who hosted my dad and a group of his buddies over for christmas when he was stationed in long beach as a medic during wwII.

    they came to visit and she allowed mr to latch onto her and we spent probably 20 hours building a dusenberg model with the card table set up in the basement family room and the airplane glue and toothpicks required do do the delicate work.

    she was interested and wonderful and i kept asking her isn’t there something else you should be doing besides helping me build my model? she was happy just to hangout with me at the card table for two or three days.

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  2. Gee, Baboons must not have had good visits!😎

    We are always happy for company, although we don’t get much. Husband’s family thinks where we live is too remote and “boring” to visit. I have no family left to speak of, aside from cousins. It was always a treat when my parents visited. We will visit daughter in August in Tacoma, and I imagine we will be in Brookings after the little one arrives.

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      1. About 40 miles to the west of my town is TR National Park, where there are lots of badland formations. Starting about 15 miles to the north of my town and continuing north for about 80 miles is rough badlands terrain full of ranches and oil wells.

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  3. I remember once when my family lived in California one of my cousins from St. Paul showed up at the door one day out of the blue. He was about 16 at the time. I was maybe 9 or 10. He had just decided to hitchhike to the west coast. Having made it to California he was out of money and needed a place to sleep and something to eat, so he came to us.

    I suppose he got a stern talking to about it, but I think my mother was actually kind of happy to see him. He was her favorite nephew, I think. He slept on the couch for a couple of days and then got put on a bus back to St. Paul.

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      1. Yes. He’s the son of my aunt who is in hospice care now. He had a number of fairly uneventful decades, but about a year and a half ago he had a stroke and nearly died, because he lives alone and wasn’t checked on for several days. However, after spending some months in rehab, he was able to return to his apartment and is doing well now.

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        1. We always see him at Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter at a minimum.

          My mother later said that she didn’t recognize him at first when she opened the door that day in California. We hadn’t seen him for a year or so and he had grown and changed. My mother said he turned his head and she suddenly recognized him when she saw him in profile.

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  4. My internet’s been down for a while – it’s windy here… (but not as much snow as was predicted).

    I can remember as a child the times when my grandparents would visit, or my mom’s out-of-state sisters – since it was several hours drive it just rarely happened, but it felt very special for my folks to have them see our place.

    And some of my favorites are when long time and far-flung friends visit… there are photos of California friends who visited our first Winona place in the 80s… fun to show them a slice of the Midwest.

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  5. Extended visits are more of a tradition in Europe than in the US.When my erstwife (who lived in Belgium) met a Dutch girl who was daffy about wolves, she suggest that Naomi contact me. I replied with a long email. was happy to share tips with her, suggesting that she visit the wolf center in Ely and other midwestern areas with connections to wolves.

    Weeks later Naomi wrote me. I read her letter three times before understanding that she was coming to the US and would be staying with me for three weeks. Her boyfriend would come too, but for a lesser amount of time. As I recall, she didn’t actually ask if she would be welcome. She decided to become my house guest before we had had a conversation on the phone. My email must have sounded friendly.

    That trip worked out well enough to encourage Naomi to make two more visits. She stayed at my cabin, hiked and camped on Isle Royale. Once she and I shared a cabin while attending a wolf conference in Colorado.

    My only other guest was in 2012 when my daughter and grandson visited my Saint Paul home for three days. The visit was difficult in some ways: my daughter was stressed, my grandson was ill, and my doctors had not worked out an effective response to my rheumatoid arthritis. And yet the visit was good enough to convince me to move to live near my family. Several Baboons contributed toys that were essential to making the visit fun.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. My baby sister is 17 years younger than I am. So when she was 14 my folks put her on a plane to come up here and visit me for a while. I slept out overnight to get Bon Jovi tickets and had several other fun things planned. Everyone I knew said things to me like “hope you can keep up with her”, “hope you’ll have enough energy to keep up with a 14 year old”. That was a big laugh; all she wanted to do was lay around, watch TV and eat fast food. She didn’t want to go rollerblading, she didn’t want to go to the lake – nothing. Except the Bon Jovi concert which was fun. I took her down to the gate to get on the plane; as the plane was rolling off and wheels were up I called my mom from the airport and said “I’m sorry I was 14.

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      1. She laughed. And then at some point in the next year when I apologized for being 15 she laughed again. In fact I think I have now apologized for pretty much my whole life because once I had a child of my own, I started back at the beginning with apologizing for being one. My mother thinks this is hysterical.

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  7. Oh I almost forgot. That was the trip on which I let her get her ears pierced. For which I got almost never ending hell from my parents for several months.

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    1. My sister’s daughter spent her senior year in high school living with us and attending the local high school. About a month before graduation, Susie got the idea that she wanted to dye her hair. I told her I wouldn’t let her do that without her mother’s permission, and as her mother was planning on coming here for the graduation, she’d just have to wait, or in the alternative, get written permission. As soon as my sister arrived she gave Susie permission to color her hair, and I was glad I didn’t have to deal with it. This was in 1985, long before tattoos were a thing, and I’m glad I didn’t have to deal with that.

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        1. Inver Grove Heights. During the six years we lived there we first had Susie for one year. Two years later we had Carina, also attending her senior year at the same school. Both Susie and Carina graduated from Simley, and really enjoyed their year in the US. Then we had one of Hans’ nephews stay with us three months while he studied one quarter at the U. If you’re a Danish kid and have relatives in the US, take advantage of it.

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  8. More on being flexible: The three guests had planned to stay at a nearby air.bnb, which didn’t work out. So we were able to rent the guest room at St. Anne’s (Mom’s residence), and Husband and I went out there for the remaining three nights, let the “kids” have the house. It was just easier for Toddler to be all in one place, for naps, etc.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I have friends who have lived in several places in the 35 years that I’ve known them… and I think every trip to visit them as been great. Dubuque IA, Frankfort IN, Pine Lake WI, Madison WI (I wrote about this back in August). Now they have purchased a house in Tucson so hopefully I can add this to the list of fun times I’ve visited them!

    Liked by 2 people

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