RG Picks Strawberries

July 4, 2008

Random Granddaughter and Mommy (my daughter’s Out of Law partner and RG’s birth mother) arrived at 10 am. My daughter (Mama) did not come on this trip. As a teacher, Mommy has summer off; Mama as a wage slave has to be at work. (She is saving vacation for the coming trip back east to Virginia to see Mommy’s parents and to Colorado to meet dad’s partner’s parents.
Although I think our instinctive reactions to RG have usually guided us reasonably well in dealing with her in the past, now that we are more aware of her introvert nature, we proceed a little more cautiously and consciously in our dealings with her, and carefully observe her reactions to us.
When she arrived, she handed me a picture she had drawn. After she removed her clogs and entered the house, instead of heading for the blocks or the train, she went to the toy barn, her current favorite toy at our “farm” and had a brief conversation with the farm animals. After talking with farm animals, she felt ready to deal with grandparents.
I asked her what animals she learned about in dinosaur study day camp. “T-Rex and brontosaurus,” she replied. Seemed like a pretty good start in learning about dinosaurs to me. Those are dinosaurs you would want to be able to identify if they visit your neighborhood.

We all trooped outside to inspect the garden. Mrs. Random handed RG a bowl for strawberries. Mrs. Random removed the net covering the strawberries and each of the pickers went down one side of the row. The strawberries were large and succulent in appearance, meeting with RG’s approval.

Some of the strawberries had obviously been nibbled (probably by chipmunks). RG looked dubious. Grandma explained that the nibbled portions can be removed. RG was obviously torn between lust for strawberries and distaste for eating strawberries wildlife had snacked on first.

However, a few of the strawberries had large holes running all the way through the berry. Grandma explained slugs had eaten their way through the berry. RG looked horrified. I don’t know that RG has begun indulging in religious speculations yet (growing up in an irreligious family), but the expression on her face communicated something compatible with the thought: What kind of God would allow this to happen? She tossed the damaged strawberries into the weeds in disgust.

Nevertheless, she was quite happy to find herself with a bowl of decent fresh strawberries in her hand by the time she reached the end of the row. She clutched the bowl firmly and securely all the way back to the house, just in case a slug or perhaps a T-Rex tried to grab it from her before she got the bowl safely inside our little dwelling.

Next: Ducks


9 Responses to “RG Picks Strawberries”

  1. spectrum2 Says:

    ” to meet dad’s partner’s parents”–can you please clarify this? I understand it to mean that mommy’s father is gay and that she (mommy) is going to visit her gay father’s partner’s parents. Huh?

  2. modestypress Says:


    You pretty much have it. Mama (my daughter) and her out of law partner (Mommy, and birth mother) were roommates at Oberlin College in Ohio. dad was a school mate of theirs. When Mommy and Mama decided to have a child long after graduation, instead of going to a sperm bank, they arranged with dad to donate the sperm. He waived his legal rights as a father, but remains involved in Random Granddaughter’s life, sort of like an uncle.

    Although none of this was explained to RG, by the age of 3 she figured out he was her dad. dad has a fairly long-time partner. Mama and Mommy and RG will fly to Virginia to see Mommy’s parents. As her parents are divorced and remarried, there is a Grandpa and Step-Grandma and a Grandma and Step-Grandpa.

    RG already knows dad’s mother(another Grandma) and this summer she will meet dad’s partner’s parents, introducing yet another pair of grandparents into her life.

    Mommy became pregnant twice before RG was born, but because of medical problems, both of what would have been RG’s older sisters died before birth, so some day RG will learn about two sisters who never survived long enough to be born.

    Explaining the facts of life to RG will be quite a challenge, and will involve a test tube at some point. Her little head will explode or she will turn out to be a genius if she can keep the family trees straight. Well, I guess, “straight” is not quite the right word, here.

    When I was young, I read a lot of science fiction. Science fiction not only involves predicting changes in technology, but also changes in social mores and family structures.

    My family is a science fiction family

  3. pandemonic Says:

    Damn slugs. I hate them. I have been positioning my berries so they aren’t resting on the ground. That helps. RG was right. What God would allow chipmunks and slugs to eat strawberries?

  4. Yecch. The whole slug thing makes me feel less guilty about not eating the strawberries in my back yard.

  5. modestypress Says:

    We just picked our last batch of strawberries today. I am glad we were able to provide Random Granddaughter with a good set of organic, unslugged strawberries.

    I was talking to the mommies about how many children today think food grows in the supermarket. RG said, in a tone of infinite scorn, “Food DOESN’T grow in the supermarket!”

    Pretty good brainwashing, if I do say so myself.

    Of course, I will probably see strawberries growing in a hydroponic tank at Safeway, tomorrow.

  6. truce Says:

    I can absolutely picture RG clutching that bowl of perfect berries tightly on the way back to the house 🙂

  7. truce Says:

    And ALL families are science fiction families, don’t you think?

    RG will grow up loved and with plenty of different role models to help her learn how diverse the world is. Lovely.

  8. […] and Food Remembrances Posted on July 7, 2008 by pandemonic This post got me thinking about children and food […]

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