We're very fortunate to have the majority of our immediate family nearby.
Here is the MH with her Sweetheart and Poppy (aka Mommy's parents). Sweetheart got her name because she was always referring to MH as Sweetheart. Even when MH was just starting to talk and had a name for everyone, she didn't have a name for my mom, one of the people she spent the most time with. One night after we'd spent the day together, MH was hugging and kissing them goodbye and said "Ni ni Poppy, Ni ni Seetheart!" We thought we had heard wrong, but she said it again immediately, and it has just evolved from there. Almost everyone who knows my mom knows her as Sweetheart - it's very endearing.
We are blessed to live about 15 minutes apart, and although MH has always had a very special bond with both of them, the last year and a half have taken their relationship to a new level. In having my back problems, I have spent a lot of time in and out of bed, unable to care for MH. And that was before the surgeries. Sweetheart deserves a Gold Medal for her dedication as both a mom and grandmother. Since I am still unable to care for MH on my own, she arrives every morning around 7:45 AM to take care of us while Hubby is at work. She takes me to physical therapy and leaves me while she and MH go on all kinds of adventures, makes sure we get out and do things that make me feel "normal" every day, does little things like pick up groceries for me, take me to run errands, and generally does everything possible to be a support to our family, and especially to me. Mom, words will never describe how lucky I am to have a mom like you.
And Poppy is just smitten with his little MH. In case I haven't mentioned, MH is an only child, and thanks to my back, will probably be one for some time. No one could love a little girl more - MH goes nuts whenever Poppy is around, and she loves to go to his office to visit him and give him a welcome break from his daily stress. One of the many things we can always count on Poppy (and Sweetheart) for is an endless supply of DD honey-glazed munchkins for MH and Iced Caramel Lattes (skim milk, of course!) for me (Hubby is a bit of a coffee snob, but he often benefits from the DD trips as well!). Poppy is an amazing help too - if I need him for ANYTHING, all I need to do is say the word and he's there. He is a great Dad, grandfather, brother, son, and uncle, and there is nothing he wouldn't do for anyone in his family.
Here is the MH with her Uncle DKR (Mommy's one and only brother) and Shay the Dog. Shay used to be our dog, but when my back injuries started kicking in, we quickly realized that she deserved a better home with someone who had the time to devote to a very active Golden Retriever who needed and deserved huge amounts of activity and attention. Luckily for us, DKR had just bought a condo and was looking for a dog. The decision was obvious. The best part is that we still get to see our Shay all the time, and MH doesn't remember that she ever lived with us. Uncle DKR is not only an AMAZING uncle, but the best brother a girl could ask for. We don't see him as often as we wish, since he's practically married to his job and lives about an hour away, but we settle for what we can get, and we're glad he's as close as he is!
So, Sweetheart, Poppy, DKR, and even Shay, we love you very much and this post is dedicated to all of you. You can't choose your family, but if we could, you'd be first on our list!