Ryan never met my dad. He died a few months before she was born. It broke my heart that they would never know each other but I was still determined to foster a 'relationship' between them. As such, I've always told her stories about him to make him as tangible as I could for her. It worked, as her Grandpa has always been a part of her life... a part she has never questioned... a part she has always accepted... a part as real as her other flesh and blood family.
When she was nearly four, she developed quite an elaborate theory about the weather... and my dad... which, truth be told, made perfect sense to me. We were driving home from the sitter's one afternoon when this conversation took place...
Me: Whew, it's hot. I hope the weatherman is calling for rain tonight.
Ry: Mama, you know Grandpa's the weatherman, don't you?
Ry: Uh huh. Grandpa keeps all the weather in a special room in Heaven and he decides what kind to send us.
Me: He keeps it in a room?
Ry: Uh huh. In cans on a shelf. And when he wants to send us weather, he opens the can and sprinkles it down on us.
Me: Oh, I see. I didn't know that. (How did I not know that?)
Ry: Uh huh. That's why it doesn't snow here. (We were living in Charlotte at the time.) Grandpa didn't like snow. So he doesn't send us any.
Me: Well, that doesn't seem right, does it? Since we like snow and all.
Ry: I know. I need to talk to Grandpa about that.
Me: Well, why do you suppose he sends Uncle Iain and Aunt Tania winter in the summer and summer in the winter? (We have quite a bit of family in Australia and New Zealand.)
Ry: I think maybe Grandpa drinks too much wine in Heaven and he gets confused sometimes.
Me (snickering): Yup. That sounds like Grandpa!
Given the 90+ temps we've been experiencing these past few days, I'm thinking maybe my dad's on the sauce again. I'll have to get Ryan to have a little chat with her Grandpa.