Wednesday, November 5, 2014

A Visit to Grandma Keena:

Last week we took a little trip over to see my Grandma Keena with my Dad. We had not been to Poplar Bluff for several years. She had met Henry was a wee baby but needed to meet the newest Castle baby and see just how much one little baby can change in a very short amount of time.

We had literally the perfect fall weather for the trip. We went to the Mingo Swamp National Park. We had the park to ourselves and enjoyed a mile long board walk through a surprisingly beautiful swamp. Henry kept looking at this map (which he would call his nap) and say "It says we are in the woods. And we might see some animals" then once he looked at it and said "It says we are in North America"...How does he know this stuff??

We had a tour of my dad's childhood. Saw some family graves, the house he came home from the hospital (which for the record did not have an indoor bathroom!!) and ate lunch at the only restaurant in town. We all ordered burgers except Grandma got chicken strips. Hamburgers are a pretty safe bet in places like that. They only took cash or check and still had a very large smoking section and the non-smoking (where we sat) section literally looked like the office/storage area. It honestly felt like we were in a different time. So strange.

We also squeezed in a trip to "Penny's" as my Grandma calls J.C Penny's and had several cups of McDonald's coffee. She is living in a different house than the house she lived in when I was growing up. In fact her old house burned down and so her home and all of her furnishings are new but somehow her house still smells exactly the same as the old house. It might just be the smell of the green Palmolive dish soap and a never empty canister of coffee on the counter. Those staples have not changed.

We watched baseball games in the evenings. Henry played on the old play set in her back yard. Henry helped Grandma make scrambled eggs for breakfast. We were constantly hopping up and down moving glass bowls, vases, and all the other fun things a busy 11 month old baby are automatically drawn to. We had dinner at Ryan's one night and Henry was introduced to the wonder of the dessert bar with soft-serve ice-cream and as many sprinkles as you want.

Dad and I drove the boys home together. We stopped off at Alley Springs to do some exploring. Henry was in awe of the water falls, caves, and again we had just the perfect fall crisp air.

We love our time with Papa and it was extra special this time also getting to see Grandma.

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