Monday, October 17, 2011

A Grandmother Post

Monday morning and Mr. Owen is coming in a few hours and will be spending the day here. One of the things I am most grateful for in my life is that Mr. Moon and I have this wonderful place with its entertaining yard for a child to run around in.

And Owen craves being outside, as I think children normally do. He never gets bored with being outside. There is just so much to do, even if it's just hitting a tree with a stick which is a pretty good thing to do if you're a kid. But of course there are the chickens to watch and feed, the goats to pat and give leaves to through the fence, the mule to offer an apple to, the dogs to walk around with, the garden to explore and check for things to eat right off the vine.
There are birds to see and squirrels too. Birds and squirrels can be quite entertaining.
Sometimes there are clothes to help hang on the line or to help bring them in. There are sticks, which can be used for a myriad of activities beyond hitting trees with.
There are plants to water. There are eggs to gather and chicken waterers to be filled.
There is a grandmother to run away from and to hold ones arms up to and say, "Hold me," to.
And she does.
There are trees to climb and to hide behind. There are bugs and lizards and frogs.
There is a porch to drag ones horse out to so that riding can be done in the open air.
And then, at random times a train goes by which is about as exciting as it gets.

All of these things are good. Doing them makes a child dirty and opens the child's eyes to the fact that life is a thing which can be lived both inside and out of a building.

The other day Owen reached down to the black dirt and rubbed his hands in it. I have no idea why he did this but he did. Then he casually wiped the dirt all over his legs. I have never actually discouraged him from getting dirty but this was taking it to a new level. If new research is true, this sort of thing means he is taking an active part in building up his own life-long immune system. And then, of course, when we came in the house, he spent a good amount of time at the sink, washing and playing with water.

He has a basket-full of toys here and he does play with some of them. He still loves his little farm but is mostly apt to gather the pig, the horse, the goat, the sheep, the farmer, and take them to play on the stairs. He likes to arrange them. He likes to throw them. He likes me to make the farmer ride on the horse which is a bit tricky. He likes to get the step stool out and smell and rearrange the spices in the kitchen. He likes to clang pot lids as cymbals. He likes to pretend to cook with spoons and whisks and pans.

We do read books but he will mostly only stay still long enough to read them if we are laying down in pre-nap mode. Lately, he has been fighting his nap with every molecule of his little-boy being. This is slightly devastating to me in that he may not need the rest but his grandmother does. The other day he would not lay down on the bed with me but insisted that he would rather be in the "crib" which in this case is a pack-n-play. Of course he can crawl out of that in a New York minute so that does no good at all.
"Wake!" he announces cheerfully, as if we had already been asleep and I sigh deeply and agree that yes, he certainly is awake.

I dreamed last night that Mr. Moon and I took Owen to Mexico with us. I carried him everywhere. It wasn't so bad. I must really love that child.

You think?

Well, it's Monday morning and Grandmother's Preschool for An Active Boy is about to open. We would fail every health department ordinance there is and we like it like that.
There are hot lunches and cold snacks given upon demand. There are no schedules. The ratio of caretaker to child is 1:1 unless Mr. Moon is home and then it is 2:1.
Educational instruction is haphazard as hell and we like it like THAT, too.
Clothing is not required for Active Boys unless the weather dictates that it must be.

Kisses ARE required and so are hugs. The use of "Please" and "Thank-you" is strongly encouraged. The use of imagination is practiced endlessly.

The love is boundless and covers all fees.

Patience on the part of the Grandmother is practically boundless which astounds her.

Monday morning and a beautiful day in Lloyd and I can't wait to get my hands on that boy.

Here we go, here we go, he'll be here soon.


  1. You are creating such magic for that boy. He is so, so lucky.

    One of my fondest memories of being small is getting out my mother's spices and smelling them. My sister and I used to give each other smell tests: one of us would put on one of my father's socks as a blindfold, and the other would push a bottle of spice under her sister's nose. Guess which one! My sister always ended it all by shoving pepper under my nose. Typical oldest sibling. boy also is obsessed with sticks. Just yesterday he filled with six year old mad, and I told him to find some sticks in the backyard and hit a tree or something. He was up there an hour, but wasn't angry anymore after only a minute or two.

    Also, when can I come over and what can I bring? xoxoxoox

  2. Have fun today! I can't wait until next year when I'm retired and can spend all my time taking care of my grandkids. I had them all weekend and now I'm a little beaten up because I hurt my back picking up my granddaughter and broke a toe after having a collision with my grandson while we were dancing. Oh well.

  3. Sounds like a great school and activity center to me! Along with building up his immune system, he is building up his lungs. Young children who never go outside and play are more likely to develop asthma.

  4. He's a cutie. Of course. Sounds like my granny's house growing up too - you're doing a great job with providing him with a wonderful foundation.

  5. "I have never actually discouraged him from getting dirty but this was taking it to a new level. If new research is true, this sort of thing means he is taking an active part in building up his own life-long immune system. And then, of course, when we came in the house, he spent a good amount of time at the sink, washing and playing with water."

    What wisdom, what wisdom. I scream when looking around at all those moms with the wet wipe disease... I think it's a sad fact that kids can't get dirty anymore, eat grass and sand, and learn by experience what life is about... I hear about locks on toilets and dishwashers, because children "could" get in and die...

    Praise you Ms Moon for giving that child the opportunity of a true lifetime to do all that he does...
    And I wonder about my little granddaughters... I wished they had a grandma like you too!

  6. It really is the most effective thing one can do to make the world a better place, one little feller at a time.

  7. I don't have words for how much I love this. How perfect it all is.

  8. What a wonderful grandmother you are.

    Thinking of Owen, arranging his little toys on the stairs, reminded me of my own boys who used to love to do that -- they'd create the most amazing arrangements -- on the floor, on the windowsills, outside in the flowers, etc. I love that about boys.

  9. Thank God he doesn't see anything wrong with dirt. He probably just likes to see how it feels on his body. I remember playing in the dirt all the time as kids.
    Have a good one!

  10. It wasn't till we had our son, fourth child, that I realized how much fun being outside was. The girls seemed to enjoy dolls, tea parties, coloring, and make believe inside. Outside was bikes, ride on toys and the playhouse. With our son, it was just as you wrote. I couldn't believe how much fun I was having too! Balls, climbing, helping daddy in his shop, water play, dirt, leaves, climbing up to the hay loft or God forbid in time the top of the barn.

    It went so fast Mary...I loved reading your post today. It gave me a little ache in my heartstrings, and an extra swallow in my throat. All good...all good.

  11. Good grandparents, like Owen has, are such a gift in life. I missed my grandparents all weekend long. They were just on my mind.

    I love you, Mary.

  12. Owen is so, so, SO blessed. I love you!

  13. I like that: Grandmother's Preschool for an Active Boy. Lucky Owen.

  14. So nice to have a grandmother or parent who doesn't yell at him for doing what kids will do.


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