When it’s called, Nolan can be real hands-on

Father's Daze

Our youngest grandson, Nolan, showed over the weekend that he has all the makings of a top-notch construction foreman.

Nolan’s father drafted me Saturday to help him out hanging drywall in a former pantry that they’re converting into a bathroom in their house.

With their mother at work, my primary duty, it turned out, was to watch Nolan and his older brother Ty while Ethan worked on the bathroom project — although I did pitch in on that when I was needed and where I couldn’t do any major damage.

Ty was pretty much entertained in his toy room or in front of the television, but Nolan decided he wanted to see what his father was up to — and make sure that whatever Ethan was doing he was doing right, even if Nolan didn’t know exactly what his father was doing.

Nolan did discover that a tape measure can be a great toy. That’s something his father learned at about the same age, which cost me countless broken, bent, twisted and unreeled tape measures over the years.

Nolan’s game was to put the tape measure on the floor, have me stretch all the way up to the ceiling and then let it snap back.

I stood guard to make sure that no one got hurt by the flying tape measure — especially Nolan’s father, the only one who was actually doing any work.

With my help — for what little that was worth — Ethan did manage to get the drywall up on the walls without anyone — or any drywall — getting hurt.

With the wall between the kitchen and the pantry-soon-to-be-bathroom knocked out, it was easy for Nolan to wander off for a little while, then come back and look in on the construction crew to make sure we were sticking to our task and making good progress.

I’m not sure where he went when he wasn’t watching the construction work, but I suspect he was checking in with his older brother Ty, who was probably the supervising foreman for this project.

It certainly didn’t do a lot for my self-esteem to know that, in this table of organization, I was below a six-year-old and a two-and-a-half-year-old — not to mention my 28-year-old son.

I’ve always suspected that Ethan was more in charge of things around the house than me, even in our house and not his, but to have it reaffirmed was not terribly reassuring — nor was it to fall so low on the organizational ladder.

We did take a break at one point to get lunch for the boys and this was where Nolan, at least, proved to be more of a hands-on person than in the construction business — literally.

They had pasta and tomato sauce for lunch and I left them at the table to eat while I went to see how things were progressing on the work site.

When I came back, Ty had finished eating and taken off to resume watching his cartoon.

Nolan had also finished, but he was waiting for someone to get him down from the table, apparently.

At least I assume he had finished, since his bowl was empty and there was no pasta on the table or the floor.

There was also no pasta on his spoon. Judging from the tomato sauce he was wearing on his hands and his face, he decided to forego eating utensils and simply dig in with his hands.

Nolan apparently believes in old-fashioned handwork, at least when it comes to mealtime.

I can’t wait to see what will happen if they decide to let him help out with painting the walls in the bathroom when it’s done.


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