When last we visited the Perkins household, Carole and Tim had just begun a 4+ day endurance test of sorts, keeping two grand-daughters while their parents vacationed in Washington, D.C. This reporter has learned that the grand-parents are still conscious, despite repeated blows to various body parts with plastic or spongy weapons. They have but a little over a day before the test is over.
In an exclusive interview with Tim, we have learned that despite the physical beating of sitting in the floor for hours trying to stack dominoes for one g'daughter only to have the other take immense delight in demolishing the construction, there have been numerous magical moments. Macie, age 1 year, 5 months, is in the magical stage of developing English as a first language. She is perfecting the words "Papa", "Mimi", "Hi", and the extreme phrase of "What's that". And it has become obvious that she understands a great deal of what is being said to her, despite her inability to respond in a coherent manner. Tim reports that if you ask her to take a toy to Maddie, she wheels around and takes a toy to Maddie. Fun stuff.
Carole reports that the biggest challenge has been keeping 4 year-old Maddie entertained, since she is a high energy, highly intelligent young lady who can max out on an activity fairly quickly. But last night, Carole says, was a revelation. After Macie had been put down for the night, Maddie was given a box of Perkins family photos...and proceeded to spend the next two hours totally absorbed, sitting alone in the floor, studying each picture for details. She found one shot of her parents and grand-parents and took great delight in the fact that her daddy had blinked just as the picture was being made. Apparently, both Tim and Carole watched her with awe as minutes became hours, totally aware that this was one of those magical, priceless times in their lives.
Maddie and Macie's parents are due in around 9 tonight. Tim will take Maddie to the airport with him for what should be a great reunion. He said he anticipates Maddie sprinting 20 yards then leaping another 20 feet or so into her parents' arms. She will be followed closely by her grand-father doing the same thing.