A Starbucks date with a granddaughter - and a ride on Saddle

Part 8 - Days in the life of a grandpa

A Starbucks date with a granddaughter - and a ride on "Saddle"

We get back to the car and decide we still have time to finish off our time together in the usual way. We drive to a local mall and go into the Starbucks coffee shop.

The blast of coolness hits us with a welcome relief. I get my favorite drink - a short mocha.

Amanda asks if she can have her usual tiny "sample cup" of whipped cream. And we share a big glass of ice water.

Amanda sits on my knee in a big comfy chair, and we relax and chat.

She asks me with a grin if I have two quarters with me today so she can have a ride on "Saddle". Saddle is the name she has given to the coin-operated horse ride in the mall. Grandpa usually has two quarters so she can have a ride.

She asks if she can put the coins in herself today, and soon she is riding and holding on to the moving, swaying horse. I stand there and enjoy her grin, and imagine what she is imagining - that she is galloping through a meadow on a beautiful horse, maybe on her way to a picnic with Grandpa....

We have a quick walk through a department store, then it is time to head out into the heat and find the car.

"Can I have a shoulder-ride to the car, Grandpa?"

Of course.

I drop her off back at home by around 5:00 PM as promised.

Another wonderful day with one of my wonderful grandchildren. I am so blessed.

I get home in time to see Joseph and Vicky, who are at the house again like the day before. Beth tells me that while I was out, a friend from out of town dropped by with their seven boys! I love these children too - they are almost like grandchildren to us.

But on this day, with the pace of this week, I am glad that I was out having a quiet few hours with Amanda, rather than around the bustle of 7 + 2 children all at once.

Ray arrives soon to pick up Joseph and Vicky, and Beth and I go out for supper. We relax over a nice dinner (we decide to share a huge 16 oz. steak, and are both full when we have finished!)

I feel like we needed a quiet break from the pace of all the baby-sitting we have been doing....

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