My niece Lena (age 7) and nephew Karl (age 9) are in town from NYC this week. I think I've spent more time with them this trip than all their other visits here combined. They are also at an age now where it is much more comfortable to go places and spend time with them, as in not one tantrum or acting-up session so far at all. I'm still a little disappointed that I haven't helped them over their fear of Sammy yet, (my 80 lb. Lab) but at least they managed to pat her on the head this year.
Grandma has set up an area in her basement for Karl to mess around with an HO trainset (that's HO as in the scale, not ho....get your mind out of the gutter). It's been a few years (cough) since I've done those little plastic building kits but this week I've been reacquainted with them. That simple looking Toolshed/Watertower is of course about 70 pieces of plastic that have to be glued together. What I remember looking at with glee when I was a kid is a bit intimidating now but Karl and I dove in and almost have it complete. We may finish it tomorrow. Karl and I also have been able to play some chess and while his skills have improved dramatically, mine have not. I'm going to have to practice more or next year he'll whip me for sure. Lena is a little tougher because when she's not into reading, it's dolls, but we've been able to spend some time talking about books and school and stuff.
Today is a trip to the zoo with Grandma. The weather's a little cool but not too bad for it. I'd go but I actually have to work a little this afternoon (more on that later maybe). Tomorrow night we're all going to the Twins game. I purchased the tickets on-line like I have for a few years but this year I can print them out at home, very cool. In fact, I just emailed my Dad his ticket so he can print that out at his office....no more dropping stuff off or picking it up at the will call window. That's cool too.