July 16, 2015
Like Mother Like Son

I just came home from 5 days up north with my 8 grandchildren. (I am lucky that my daughters and their husbands trust me with their babies, without them.) I started doing this trip about 5 years ago, the plan for Jim and I was to spend as much time with the grands as we could. Jim’s only trip like this was skiing with Trinity and Owen—I think they were 4. It was a great time and we were exhausted. While he is not here physically, we can feel his wonderful goodness when we are together. 

We traveled the four hour drive up north to my cottage on Lake Eshquaguma, to swim, tube, fish, and watch “Fear Factor”. I love being with them, but I am a strict grandma, and I know sometimes they are not so happy to be with me. In theory, I would love to be the ‘free for all’ type of grandma, but alas I am not and so there are rules and expectations. Kate, daughter #3, has accompanied me the last 3 years and she is great. I drove the boat this year, and the kids thought I was OK. They think Kate is fantastic—she is much faster and more turns.

On Sunday morning, the 10 of us went to Mass in Biwabik, MN. It is a nice little church, that Ryan Construction Co, built about 48 years ago. We arrived in a downpour, about 3 minutes late; the 3rd pew from the front beckoned to us and we marched in. Henry noticed that the ceiling near the lector was leaking. I told him not to say anything because his grandpa, and great grandpa built the church. I turned to Kate just as the ceiling started dripping on her 20 month old, we were sure it was Jim saying hi. 

I see my children in their children, and it is amazing how their traits are similar. Maggie was the sleep walker in our family. 31 years ago when we moved to the house on Carson’s Bay, I awoke to hear someone crying “momma where are you?” I started looking thru the bedrooms and could hear the voice but not see the child. I went to the window, there was Maggie standing on the end of our new dock, sound asleep. I talked my way down the steps and on to the dock until I had her in hand and safe. The next day, we purchased an alarm that hung on the outside doors, if she got within 2 ft of a door an alarm went off and woke her.

Last night up at the cabin, Maggie & Craig’s youngest, Henry, was sleep walking in the bunkhouse when he cracked his head on the corner of the bunk bed. He came screaming and crying into the main cottage with blood streaming down his back, “momma where are you?”. He was sound asleep. It was obvious that the emergency room was in our immediate future. We arrived at 1:45 AM and left with 2 staples at 2:45 AM.

Henry was very brave, but I wish he had picked a different way to be like his mom.

Colleen Ryan