So the whole time I was in the Philippines, I thought about this blog and about what I would write and how I would like to upload pictures. I still hope to at some point and I want to upload video but I am jumping ahead of myself.
Growing up, I had the pleasure of knowing and loving my great grandparents. My great grandmother died when I was young but I still remember her soft hugs and wonderful food. My great grandfather was an interesting character. I believe I was 15 when he passed so I have pretty good memories of him. And some interesting stories. He helped repair the steeple on a church. He built the two houses, one that he lived in and one that my grand parents lived in.
He used to shoot squirrels from the window of his house. Yep, they would get in the bird feed and eat it, chasing the birds away. My great used to get out his handgun and shoot them, that is until the local police came and asked him to stop shooting his gun within city limits. I think at that point, he had shot about 84 squirrels only missing one. Of course, I don't have rose colored glasses. He was bigoted in a big way. He wouldn't have approved of my marriage or kids but then he was born around the turn of the century. I don't subscribe to his world view but I could still love him none the less and learn from him.
My mom's dad was, also, an interesting character. He was a successful business man. He was a good cook. He gave me the gift of the love of travel. He and my grandmother had been all over the world. He had great stories and an independent spirit. I moved from Iowa City to Tucson in 2006. He picked me up while he was on his normal summer travel from Phoenix to the east coast through the midwest and back again to Phoenix. We traveled in his car stopping in New Mexico. At the motel, he brought out his flask so that we could share a sip. He was a drink before dinner kind of guy. He always seemed worldly and welcoming. Every birthday, he would send a letter with a poem that he composed as well as articles and cartoons he had found interesting or funny that he wanted to share. He was really into the stock market and gold. He was early on gold by about 10 years. He died while I was pregnant with Max.
Krismon's grandfather reminds me of my grandfather. He doesn't speak english, he is shorter than my grandfather was but there is something indescribable. He still works and he is almost 90. I found out that he started working when he was 15. He was adopted. He inspires his family with his hard work. This visit was for him, to celebrate his birthday and to bring all his children together with him. And for me, it was to give my kids time with their great grandfather. The kids loved giving him kisses, Harry liked bumping foreheads with him.
Okay this is the only picture I found this time so far with the older kids and their great grandfather, Tikong (spelling? chinese for great grandfather). The picture includes their uncle joel and Mercy. She bought the cake for him, she's been cooking for the family for over 20 years. She's an awesome cook and super nice woman.