I know it is a little late, however, I wanted to wish everyone HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!
DH and I started our new year with an unfortunate event. DH's Grandmother passed away on 12/31/06. The first week of the new year was spent with family, mourning the loss of a dear dear woman. One of the nicest things said that week was that it didn't matter if you were family, friend, or stranger; Grandma Day was Grandma Day to everyone.
DH and I talked about so many of the fun times and fond memories we have of Grandma. He remembers picking blueberries at her farm to make jam or pie and eating more than he brought back to Grandma. He spent a couple weeks every summer with his Grandparents and he fondly recalls events, meals, stories and love from those times.
It made me realize that it wasn't uncommon for grandchildren to go for a week or two in the summer to visit with grandparents. How times have changed. It seems such a chore to go anywhere anymore, let alone plan a week-long vacation. Children are so involved in activities that they don't have a free weekend to visit an Aunt or Grandmother.
DH and I have decided to put ourselves out there more for our nieces and nephews (and my brothers). We are being much more vocal about our desire to have the kids over for a weekend. I think (in general) many parents view their children as a burden to lay on someone else to handle, when truly they are a JOY!! DH and I spent Thanksgiving with a house FULL of children and we had SO MUCH FUN.
In July my parents are celebrating 30 years of marriage. After the party, DH and I are planning on keeping my brothers for a WHOLE WEEK so my parents can go on a second honeymoon!! I can't wait. I love having my brothers around. In February we are watching our niece and nephew while DH's Brother and Sister-in-law spend some quality time alone. Again, I can't wait.
Hopefully we will be able to convince our family (and friends) that DH and I truly do enjoy "babysitting."