Posts Tagged ‘granddaughters’

Pacee and Peaches

Pacee and Peaches

“Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did not do that is inconsolable.” – Sydney Smith

No Regrets Here

My granddaughter, Patricia Colleen Bean, was named after me, but she has always been called Pacee.

She is the ninth of my 17 grandchildren and great-grandchildren, but the only one whom I saw come into this world. I was honored to be in the room with my son and his wife for her birth. That’s because, at the time, I was the only family they had within 1,200 miles.

Very few events in my life can compare with the high I had the day of her birth. One of my greatest pleasures in her early months of life was watching her and my beloved dog, Peaches play together. Peaches, a golden cocker spaniel, would jump into her playpen for the fun event.

Paee at Easter

Pacee at Easter

But life is ever changing, and soon my son moved his family back to Texas, leaving me in Utah once again without nearby family. I only saw Pacee maybe once a year from that time on.

She grew into a beautiful girl – and on December 13th, she is graduating from Texas A&M University with a civil engineering degree.

Having just recently returned from two weeks in Texas for a family reunion, I pleaded that I could not attend the graduation. Yesterday, however, I realized that I couldn’t miss it. To do so would leave me with regrets and I’ve promised myself that I would be an old woman with no regrets.

Pacee, today. Oh my oh my. Where did time go?

Pacee, today. Oh my oh my. Where did time go?

So I spent most of yesterday making plans for a quick trip that involves an economy (better gas mileage than my RV, Gypsy Lee) rental car, a pet-friendly hotel (Pepper’s going with me) to break up the 900-mile drive into two days, calling family members to say I was crashing at their houses, raiding my savings, and clearing the decks for a December 10 departure.

Don’t you just love it when everything comes together?

Bean’s Pat: Day of the Condor http://tinyurl.com/lde5nlj I have been in love with condors ever since, as an editor, I put the picture of the first captive born condor, on Page 1 of my newspaper.

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A bit disheveled, but I finally got myself back up from the creek, and Shanna even got a photo of Maggie and I together, which led to my sliding down the cliff. -- Photo by Shanna Lee

“Remember what Bilbo used to say: It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.” — J.R.R. Tolkien

Travels With Maggie

Rowlett, one of the many suburbs surrounding Dallas and where my oldest daughter lives, has been my home for the past couple of weeks. What with a grandson’s wedding, other family activities and a fenced backyard for Maggie, I haven’t taken my usually daily walks.

So it was with extreme delight yesterday when my granddaughter, Shanna, Maggie and I were able to escape for a stroll in Rowlett’s Springfield Park, which offers walking paths along a creek and around a lake. For the more adventurous, there’s also a narrow path through the woods that runs alongside a creek. Of course this is the one the three of us took.

A butterfly and wildflowers, evidence of spring bursting out all over. -- Photo by Pat Bean

As we hiked, I took photographs of wildflowers, butterflies, budding trees, great-tailed grackles and the creek. At one point along the hike, a huge gnarl of intertwined tree trunks caught my attention. I decided it would be a great spot for Shanna to take a picture of Maggie and me. Since I’m always the photographer, I don’t have any good photos of my canine traveling companion and me together.

Erosion, however, had cut a part of the path away that I needed to cross to get over to the scenic photo site. Over-estimating my athletic skills, I decided I could maneuver past it.

Bad idea!

One step quickly found me sliding down a steep eight-foot drop. Fortunately I was able to grab hold of a tree snag that counteracted gravity just about six inches before I would have ended up in the creek.

Shanna’s immediate response was to nervously ask: “Are you OK Nana. Are you hurt.” I wasn’t. The only casualty was my turquoise pants whose seat and one leg was a dirty brown. Maggie, whose retractable leash I still had in my hand, gave me a look that clearly said: “That was a stupid thing to do. Don’t expect me to rescue you.”

Since Shanna couldn’t reach me, it was a self rescue using snags to slowly haul myself up, always remembering to make sure I had three limbs firmly placed before I reached for a new hold.

The response from my granddaughter when I reached the top was: “You’re awesome Nana.” Her words made my fall well worth the effort.

Shanna also managed to snap a picture of Maggie and I just before I reached the top of the path again. It wasn’t quite the photograph I had pictured earlier, but I decided it was good enough.

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