Thursday, December 29, 2011

Catching Up With Nana

TH has been successfully avoiding tilting at Nana windmills. We did not go there for Thanksgiving – we simply said that we were working and that we hoped that they would be able to come here again sometime soon. That engendered only a small drama.

And here is this year’s Hanukkah email exchange:
From: Nana
Date: December 13, 2011 9:45:54 AM
To: TrophyHusband

Presents have been sent and will be arriving different, could you please put them away until Chanukah?!

When would be good for us to visit? When does HB's vacation start? Maybe we could come mid week to help you out?

TH and I agreed that HB has enough resilience and judgment at this point that we shouldn’t have to hover if they’re only here a couple of days. I said that the one thing I cared about was that we give her very firm dates – she often changes plans at the last minute and ends up visiting on days that we were not prepared to have her.

So TH replied:
From: TH
Date: December 13, 2011 12:16:07 PM

In fact the window we have that you could come is midweek: coming on/after Monday 12/19 - leaving sometime Wed 12/21. Note that that includes the first night of Chanukah the evening of Tues 12/20, so that will be a special event. If coming within that window doesn't work either in advance or if something comes up at the last minute in your schedule, we can look at weekends after the holiday.

We will be at work those days for at least parts of the day (he'd be in vacation care otherwise) so you can do some things on your own with him. Staying in our spare bedroom is an option, though you may be more comfortable in the hotel...either option is OK.
Three days of silence. Then:
On Dec 16, 2011, at 9:01 AM, Nana wrote:

We're going to [HB’s cousin]’s birthday party this weekend, so not sure if we can do the drive the next day we get home.... I'll let you know, if that's OK!

TH replied:
Date: December 16, 2011 10:38:37 AM
To: Nana

Sure see how it goes...vacation care is there for us whether he uses it or not...OK either way.
Three more days of silence. Then, on the evening of the day we’d invited them to come:
On Dec 19, 2011, at 7:00 PM, Nana wrote:

Hi TH:
Sorry that we're not able to come. Our car has been in the repair shop for a week already and we actually are driving to [another state] tomorrow (otherwise wait until Thursday for our car) to pick up parts to install a new alternator finally! We've gotten the run around from a local repair shop, who is supposed to specialize in foreign cars....we should have just had it towed to the Porsche dealer when it broke down last Monday night!!!
We had a rental car this past weekend to drive to [cousin]’s and would like to get our car back :(
We'll make it another time that's good for you..
Have a very happy holiday with DM’s parents - give them our best! And DM too.....
And please kiss HB for us!
Seems like being straightforward and firm is working pretty well at the moment. We knew better than to tell HB that they might come, so the delay in responding did not affect him – nor is he aware that their stated reason for not coming is that they wanted to pick up parts for their Porsche so they could get it back two days early.

(And I sent a picture of HB to her of him wearing pajamas she gave him. I swear I am trying.)


electriclady said...

I love that Nana drives a Porsche.

OMDG said...
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Heather said...

Wow... so important to get the Porsche parts but not to visit the grandchild.

Glad the drama is at least being kept to a minimum.

OMDG said...

Hearing about other peoples' in-law drama makes me very grateful that mine don't speak English, and that my husband filters what they say about me to him (I'm assuming) heavily.

I think you handled things beautifully.

Also, I want a Porsche.

G in Berlin said...

Well done! I am still trying to make things work as smoothly with my own parents, but I am at least learning to keep all the travails from the kids.

redzils said...

Your mother in law is a piece of work, but you knew that ;) I admire your cool in dealing with her.

Anonymous said...

You have the patience of Job. I would have moved to another country and changed my name. And tell Nana that you have an idea for repurposing her Porsche.


Kaviare said...

The tone of these emails is eerily like that of the email exchange I am currently having with my mother. I, too, am working on setting firm boundaries. It's hard.

Sharon Bartlett said...
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Magpie said...

the porsche is the perfect touch.

E. said...

You're doing great. Interesting that when you say "come - you can have more access to HB than recently and even stay with us if you want," suddenly it's not so very important to her to come. It works out pretty well, eh? You get the credit but don't actually have to deal with a visit.

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