Randy London is 68; Lyndsay London is 52; Selina is 14;
Ryan is 31; Lainey is 6; Jami is 68
(Liana is 6; Adam is 8)
Even in the summer, when it got light early, Randy London got up with the sunrise.
It made for a long day, but it was worth it, now that they lived by the lake...
He wasn't the only early riser in the family. From in the house, he could hear music playing softly, as his daughter Selina went through her usual morning ballet practice routine.
She was the other reason Randy liked to get up early, now that school was out. He could use the peace and quiet.
As the day went on, their house seemed to fill up with more and more kids.
It was just as well Randy enjoyed cooking. He often lost track of how many they served lunch to.
It was hectic, but overall Randy didn't mind. Selina was popular and, more importantly, she was happy. And if all her friends were coming to their house, then at least that meant they knew where she was and what she was doing.
Today, however, was one of the days when insisted that she take a break from her friends, as he and Lyndsay did from time to time, so they could spend time together as a family.
Fortunately Selina generally had no problem with this, as she got on well with both her parents.
She loved spending time on the water, too.
That afternoon, Randy was called into work. It happened too often, especially for someone who had been trying to retire for the last year. But the hospital was short of staff, and unable to find anyone local to replace him as Chief of Staff now that Joshua Ruben was most definitely out of the picture. The board was advertising further afield, and in the mean time he was stuck.
On his way out the door, he literally ran into a teenage boy he hadn't seen around before.
"His name's Isiah," Lyndsay said later. "Selina was pretty happy to see him."
"First crush?" Randy asked.
Lyndsay shrugged. "Most of the time they just sat outside and talked, and they didn't even sit close...
... Oh, and he did his summer school homework in our kitchen. Said he can't get it done at home because his little sister's too noisy."
When Randy came back from work, he found Ryan, his son from his first marriage, came out to visit from 'Backwater Village', as Randy's ex-wife always called it.
He and Ryan were never sure if Jami had genuinely mistaken the name of Bluewater Village - she wasn't the best at paying attention to things that didn't affect her directly - or if it was a deliberate slur.
She'd never been happy about Ryan moving out there. She'd had such high hopes for him when he went to college, she said. Well, Randy had to admit he'd been hoping for another doctor in the family, but really, he just wanted Ryan to do what made him happy. And what made him happy, it turned out, was growing things.
From a small garden behind the dorm, Ryan moved to a horticulture degree. He married his college girlfriend Kat and they settled in Bluewater village, selling the plants and flowers Ryan grew to local shops and at the farmers' markets on the weekends. And Jami was horrified.
She'd forgiven him a bit last year, when one of his previous clients retired and sold him her flower shop.
Now at least Jami could tell people her son was a businessman, an entrepreneur, rather than just a gardener.
When Ryan had turned 25, he took ownership of a considerable trust fund. Randy was reasonably well off, but Jami was genuinely a billionaire, and she'd been putting money in trust for her only child throughout her career as a dancer, then an actor.
To her horror, Ryan used a chunk of the money to buy a large, derelict Victorian house. She all but wept at the peeling paint and rotten boards, even though Ryan had emailed her two builders' reports assuring them that the house was sound and simply in need of a lot of tender loving care.
Over the couple of years that followed, Ryan and Kat had lovingly restored the house into a beautiful family home for them and their three children, twin girls and a boy.
They'd decorated it in a style sympathetic to the era in which it was built.
Even Jami had grudgingly admitted they'd done a good job, even if the place was 'too quaint' for her tastes.
The house was next to a playground, and they could easily watch the children play there from home.
Often the whole family went anyway, just to get out of the house during the warm summer evenings.
Ryan and Kat were very much hands-on parents, which pleased Randy a great deal. He knew that he and Jami hadn't been anywhere near as involved as they should have been when Ryan was growing up, and he didn't want his son to make the same mistake.
Ryan's daughter Lainey had come to visit with him, although Randy knew it wasn't so much to see her grandfather, as it was to visit her aunt Selina. The little girl adored her...
... even when Selina terrified her with spooky stories.
"So, how is your mother?" Randy asked, when Ryan said he'd visited her that morning.
"Having trouble with butlers, apparently," Ryan said.
"Yeah, she's been through three in a month... You know Mum. She told me about it in great detail...
"What did she do to them?" Randy asked.
"Nothing according to her. She said one just walked off, one was lazy... the third one seems to be working out ok, and wasn't I just horrified by the mess the house was in... "
"And was it a mess?"
Ryan shrugged. "Looked fine to me. Oh, and she had to learn to use her own dishwasher, although she needed to get Uncle Ashley to show her how. It was all a bit traumatic."
Randy laughed. Maybe you could expect an actress to be a little over-dramatic, but Jami took it to the extreme.
"She's planning to go into directing," Ryan added. "She's been a bit disillusioned with acting, now that they're offering her grandmother roles."
"But she is a grandmother," Randy said.
"I told her that , but apparently it's not her fault I had kids too young."
It didn't help things that Lainey really didn't get along with her grandmother.
"You need to stop being rude to her," Ryan said, when Jami left the room.
"But all she does is waves her arms around and talks about herself," Lainey said. "Can't I just play with the puppies?"
"Puppies?" Lyndsay asked. "You mean that yappy little poodle?"
"No," said Ryan. "Apparently the poodle escaped, and had some fun while it was away."
That evening, after Ryan left, Lyndsay and Randy sat outside talking.
"Jami must have been furious over the puppies," he laughed. You know how she loves her pedigrees."
"I don't know," said Lyndsay. "Ryan said that she seemed to like them."
Randy shook his head. "I don't think I'll ever understand her," he said.
"You married her!"
He laughed again. "We should go to bed. It's been a long day."
Even so, the lake was as pretty at night as it was in the early morning, and neither of them were in any hurry to move.
Ryan's family picture... since they didn't get nearly as much time in the update as I would have liked.
Back in TS2, the house they bought was the House of Fallen Trees, moved to Bluewater Village because it fitted with my Victorian theme for the town. We'd made really good progress in redecorating it, and I although I found a TS3 version of it, I didn't have the heart to go through all that decorating again. The house I did find for them is beautiful. It's available here. The flower shop was bought from Florence (Delarosa) Green, when she retired.
When I did play Ryan's family, Lainey stole the show! Her facial expressions with Jami were priceless. I think she's my cutest TS3 kid so far...
"Ssshhh, I'm trying to study here!" :)
She also knows what she wants. No matter how many times I changed her into everyday clothes, she kept going back to the paper crown outfit, and not just when she was playing. And I don't even know where the outfit came from that she was wearing at Jami's house. I never planned that one. Bare feet, too :)
Randy was Chief of Staff in TS2, but all my sims who had fulfilled their LTW's in TS2 have been put a couple of steps away from it in TS3, because then they can earn whatever benefits for it in this game.
Oh, and the puppies! Story Progression works on animals, too, it seems :) Jami had this poodle, and then I went back to her house and she had two puppies, too. Family tree tells me Cyd Roseland's dog was the culprit, although I imagine the owners don't know that. It happened before I had set pet pregnancy lengths to suit my hood timeline, so the puppies came really fast. Particularly funny given that I'd already established here that Jami was a pedigree dog snob.