My sweet little pumpkin (it IS Thanksgiving time, pumpkin time), Ava, comes over to play with me. She is a game player, and this year, since she is now the ripe old age of six, she has caught on rather nicely to the intricacies of the games with all the skill that goes into blocking your opponent and planning the strategy for the big win.
We play Animal Sequence, Uno Mooo, Bingo, Mickey Dominoes, War, Spoons, anything we have on hand or that looks interesting.
Sometimes we go for playing house, taking turns at who is Mom. Or we play school where she is always the teacher. Last year, in kindergarten, she was such a sweet, demure, kind, soft-spoken teacher, but this year in first grade she has an edge to her while she points her finger and says, “I’m not telling you again.”
Then there are the days I am not really quite sure what we are supposed to be playing. She usually centers her make-believe whatever-we-are around my working in the yard. I tell her that, no, I can’t play house today because I am working in the yard. She in her very matter-of-fact voice says, “I know! You can be the daughter that works at the plant-selling place, and I will be the mom.”
No excuse will suffice. She comes back with some other angle in her tenacious we-are-going-to-play attitude.
I, of course, always give in.
How could I not?!!! Just look at her!!!
Sunday, after I had beat her once again at Bingo, she jumps up on the couch and does a big raspberry in my face. Spit everywhere! So I jump up and pull her hands away from her face (she fought fiercely) and raspberried her right back!
The big coup for this old Granny?
Ava says “Ewwwwww! YUCK! Grandma spit!”
I can remember how I hated when my mom took her cloth hankie (it was all in super slow motion) and brought it up to her puckered lips glistening with spit and put a big glob of spit on the hankie. Then her arm and hand with the spit-globbed hankie would so slowly (oh the dread, the dread) come toward my face to wipe off (I’m almost certain) an invisible spot of dirt or food or snot off of me.
I’m still laughing about doing it to Ava. Only it’s twice as bad.