Today is my dad’s birthday. Grandpa Bill was born to be a grandpa, I think. He’s clever and funny and creative and has a well-enhanced inner child. Grandpa draws cartoons to illustrate his grandchildren’s stories, he built a train set to entertain them (yes, of course it was for them), he has helped build school projects (he helped Alex build a cardboard and plastic cup spray painted castle when she was in the second grade). He makes boxes for their stuff, kites for their classrooms (as in, Grandma and Grandpa are coming for show and tell and we will all be building our own kites), cages for their bugs. All of the grandkids have benefited from the Grandpa with the Gluegun….but because mine are the ones who get him for Christmas, we get something special.
The graham cracker candy gluegun structure thingymajigs.This is how we spend the days before Christmas. Most of them were pre-digital camera (though my mom has documented all), but here’s last year’s.
In case you don’t recognize it, it’s the Golden Gate Bridge. The year before, we did the Eiffel Tower. I think Fenway Park was the year before that. It was a very specific inning of a very specific World Series game. We’ve done Maui, a ski resort and plenty of horse stables. In our early years we did trains, merry-go-rounds and cruise ships. Mere childs play. We are now moving into structures that require engineering, wired licorice and as much cardboard as graham cracker. This is serious business, and not meant for sissies.
Last weekend we brainstormed this year’s project. An amusement park. With a rollercoaster, and a tilt a whirl, and a carousel and one of those swinging arms of death. And a lake, and a train. He has warned me that it will take several days, and we may have to build it in several parts to make it 6 feet long. He’s got the industrial glue gun, and he’s pretty anxious to use it. I’ll make sure I have the industrial strength wine as a counterbalance.
I don’t want to give the impression that he only has a gluegun to entertain us. He grows beautiful orchids, makes killer eggs for breakfast and flies model airplanes (including the one that recently flew 13 miles without him, and was actually returned, somewhat intact). But we’ll save those stories for another birthday.
Happy Birthday Dad. You rock as a dad, and you really, really rock as a grandpa.