Posted in Humor, The Joy and Wisdom of Children

Magic Dream Spray

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Do other folks out there do what my family does?  All get iPhones and set up a little Family Group Messaging System?  Well, my two daughters Amy and Emily, along with Donna (even though divorced now, we remain the best-est of friends) have done just that.  And it’s such an incredibly efficient strategy for staying in touch, bothering each other constantly and having SO MUCH FUN!

The other night, daughter Amy (and mother of grandsons Daniel, 7 and Gabriel, 4) sent us this text.

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I LOVE faith-stretching strategies such as that!  My response:

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A bit more of Amy’s explanation:

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Me:

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End of discussion until a couple of days later when we received this text from Amy as she, Orte and the boys were driving down to Florida for the weekend:

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Family … magical.

Maybe that’s what family is … Magic Dream Spray.

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Posted in The Joy and Wisdom of Children

GRANDstanding

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Okay, okay, I admit it. After getting over the terror of my slightly (?) insane old-age-related fear of becoming a grandfather, I have come to LOVE this joyful status in life. And if you’ve read my blog much at all, you’ve seen the grandies: brothers Daniel and Gabriel, and grandtwins Matthew and Madison.

Simply put, they offer me such tremendous happiness, especially since they live right here in my Savannah.

For example, yesterday afternoon, as I twinsat (is that a word?), Matthew wanted a back massage. How do they learn that at 20 months?  So he climbed up on the couch.

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And  directed me with his little hand, as he watched The Disney Channel.

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I will treasure those four minutes.

And earlier in the day, after the Savannah morning downpour stopped, the twins puddled their way to fun.

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Daniel and Gabriel whooped it up in New Orleans last weekend at the Louisiana Aquarium, the N.O. Children’s Museum, and the IMAX.

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I really love being Abu.

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Posted in The Joy and Wisdom of Children

The Babies Hair Salon

So today I decided I really needed to do something about my limp, flyaway, graying hair.

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I’m frustrated because, well, I’m beginning to look my age.  And, you know, that just doesn’t seem natural.  So I consulted the online Yellow Pages for area barbers and hair salons and read about an intriguing little place out near Skidaway Island (I’m in Savannah, by the way) called … The Babies Hair Salon.

I drove over, parked Skedaddler (my lil gray Scion) (gray seems to be a theme in my life lately) (just not fifty shades of it) (yet) and found myself being promptly greeted by, believe it or not, two surprised-looking BABIES!  Ten-month-old twins Madison and Matthew …

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When he saw my hair, I got the impression that Matthew had initial concerns about his and his sister’s ability to help me …

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Perhaps Madison had the same concern, but she tried to mask her feelings with a blank stare.

Nevertheless, the duo led me into their salon’s inner sanctum.

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“I’m beginning to see a color scheme here,” I thought perceptively and intelligently.

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Matthew and Madison took a moment to look through their style books to see what they might be able to do for me.

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“This is definitely going to be a challenge,” they seemed to be saying.

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I felt my first tiny jolt of trepidation when I realized they were looking at books about cows and sheep.

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With determination set clearly upon their young but professional countenances, the twins indicated for me to help them up into their work spaces.

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“An odd request,” I thought.  “They don’t do that at the Barber Pole downtown.”  But, the completely compliant client, I obeyed.

And for about sixty seconds, everything seemed to be going well.  Just typical stylist assessment techniques such as cranial observation and exploratory scalp manipulation.

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Then, inexplicably, I got the distinct impression that Madison was somehow asking Matthew to consult with the monkeys on the wall about the next step.

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But before I had time to investigate, they got to work.

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“This might be fun,” I thought, kinda smiling.

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Madison gently massaged in soothing hair cream.

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Healthy hair.

Then they both started to get a little rough, I thought,  for ten-month-olds.

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Seemingly out of the blue, I sensed a frustrated Matthew yelling to Madison, “Enough of this, sissy!  There’s no way to help this old man!”

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“Bite him!” she might have said.

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“What going on here?!” I thought in terror.  “Are they baby vampires or something?  Nick at Twilight?!  Whatever.  I’m outta here.”

As Skedaddler and I hightailed it back to Savannah’s historic district where I live across from Colonial Park Cemetery, I looked in my rearview mirror and thought, “You know, gray’s not such a bad color.  It’s kinda in-between.”

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(Thanks to Grandtwins Matthew and Madison for help with this post.  And the iPhone’s reverse camera.)

Posted in The Joy and Wisdom of Children

Oh Possum! (Warning: A Bit Gross)

So Tuesday I picked up grandson Daniel …

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…at soccer camp and headed back to his house.  Traversing up the driveway, discussing Skylander Giants, we both saw this at about the same time:

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A small, dead, open-eyed possum in the neatly manicured front lawn.  “Look, Abu!  A big rat!” Daniel yelled, as he excitedly unbuckled his seat belt, careening toward the thing.

“I think it’s a possum, Daniel, and I also think he’s dead.”  (WHY do I use verbs like “think” in times like this?  The possum was dead as a doornail with bugs swarming around its head.)

“That means he’s not breathing,” Daniel explained to me.

“Why don’t you go in the house and cool off, while I get rid of our friend?”

“NO!” Daniel screamed.  “We have to show it to Mommy!”

“Well, he can stay here for a few minutes.”  (Like the possum was going somewhere.)

At about that time, Olivia and Larkin, the cute twins from next door, came running into the driveway, straight from a pool party.  And of course, Daniel had to show them …

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… explaining that the “rat, I mean possum, was dead and couldn’t move, so don’t touch it till Mommy comes home because we are going to show it to her.”

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Her expression says it all.

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(Touch it?!)

Posted in Five Friday Happy Bringers

Five Friday Happy Bringers (5/3/13)

It’s Cinco de Mayo weekend, so let’s be happy!  Here are five more reasons I’m smiling.

1.  Ships

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2.  Getting good deals at the Dollar Tree.

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(And being patriotic at the same time.)

3.  Grandson Daniel trying to get Grandtwin Matthew to patty cake.  (Wait a sec, is it pat-a-cake?)

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4.  Learning (great emphasis on “learning”) to go with the flow, instead of fighting against it.

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5.  Grilling pork chops the other night and creating a NealEnJoy Marinade with apple butter and Dale’s Seasoning.  Yum, yum, yum!  But I ate them before I thought to take a picture to show you.  I considered snapping a quick photo of my belly, but I couldn’t stretch my iPhone out far enough for the reverse camera thingy to get my midsection so bloated.  So I thought to myself, “You know, you could probably ‘Google image’ (I just created a new verb!) a pic that would pass as your NealEnJoy marinated pork chops, and, really, who would know?”  But after the Googling, I was bamboozled by all the pork chop pictures that came up.

This could be a picture, for example, of my chops …

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… except they are in a frying pan.  But that frying pan does look like one of mine.

And don’t these look good?

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And thick:

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And these remind me SO MUCH of how my mama used to fry pork chops for supper.

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Then the Internet surfing got weird.  Here’s a man grilling pork chops with his standing dog watching.

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And I discovered that Republican politicians absolutely LOVE pork chops.  Here’s Mitt Romney eating one.

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And Texas Governor Rick Perry.

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And would you believe it?  Here’s John McCain eating a pork chop too.

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Not to mention Rudy Giuliani.

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I started to call somebody to report my findings about partisan pork, but I didn’t know who.  Then, lo and behold, guess who popped up chowing down on a chop?!

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And a pork sandwich.

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Fifteen minutes and gobs of chop pics later, I started to smell more pork.  Then out jumped an advertisement of Miss Piggy hawking her line of perfume called … yep, Pork Chops.

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Enough of this foolishness.  May we all flow into a beautiful weekend ahead.

Posted in Five Friday Happy Bringers

Five Friday Happy Bringers — 4/26/13

Friday, Friday, Friday.  Do you connect it with happiness?  Here are five reasons I do.

1.  Aspiring to being an optimist (even though I was SO SO ready to start a Depression Blog the other day when I tore a fingernail.  Sad but true.  I’m fine with optimism and happiness and contentment as long as I don’t feel any actual pain.  But let me hurt, and for some immature, sick reason, I spiral down.  TMI?)

2.  Faith.

3.  Oatmeal with real butter.

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4.  Susan Boyle singing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”

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Yes, I’m a Boyle fan.

5.  Playing ball with Gabriel:

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And you have a ball this weekend!

Posted in In Our Own Backyard, The Joy and Wisdom of Children

D-Man, Superheroes and Snakehandling: Party Weekend–Party Two

As I mentioned in the previous post, this past weekend brought two terrific parties, a street celebration Saturday night and then on Sunday afternoon the Sixth Birthday Celebration for my Grandson Daniel.

Before I escort you to Weekend Party Two, let me just explain that Daniel is one very COOL little boy.  And here are Eight Sunglasses-Prominent Pics of D-man to prove it:

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(With kindergarten teacher Ms. Lancaster)

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(With little brother Gabriel)

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Okay, maybe the twin girls froze him up a bit and reduced his coolness by a tad.

But NOT on his birthday.  Here he sits, with his green faux hawk (aka fohawk) before his backyard party begins, “patiently” waiting for the Spiderman inflatable to blow up.

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Almost there.

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“I love it!”

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Here’s Batman perched in the trees:

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I have NEVER seen a balloon so huge.  And the Spiderman pinata, ready to be lowered:

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Soon the backyard fills with school and neighborhood friends.

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A great hit at the party–the appearance of the folks and animals from Critters-to-Go.  The kids (and adults) are fascinated.

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“Okay, kids, now let’s all play with snakes!”  (Neal’s first thought: “Is everyone here INSANE?  What happened to the PRETEND superheroes theme?)  Then out of the corner of my eye, I see courageous Batman hiding out in the trees away from all this.

Initially, Daniel’s not so sure.  See?  He’s a smart boy.

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That soon changes.

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“Here, Abu, you hold him too.”

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My drug-induced-looking smile is for the camera.  I’m really thinking: “Is there ANY possible way to spank this child with over fifty people watching?”

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Then Daniel becomes an experienced snakehandler.

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Next, the spiders, of course.

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Her t-shirt says it all.

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(Note to self: talk to therapist about memory erasure treatment.)

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Younger daughter Emily with grandtwins Madison and Matthew:

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“Look up, Em.”

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Older daughter Amy (Daniel’s mom) holding Matthew:

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Matthew: “I know who my mama is.”

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Nana and Madison step up:

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D’s little brother Gabriel:

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Amy and hubby Orte:

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Oh, the gifts!

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After the party, Daniel and I play with the giant picture of him that I had attached to a backyard tree.  See it way in the back there?

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An Afternoon of Joy.