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Callan Turns 6

This week it’s my delight to talk about my sweet grandson, Callan, who just turned 6 a few days ago.

This little fellow has brought joy since he was born. He’s just so amiable. So sweet. So happy.

Case in point. I offered to make him cupcakes for his birthday party. He chose the flavors and then we talked about the decorations. At first he mentioned Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I said that sounds difficult, I’m not sure I can do that. He replied OK. Then he made another suggestion and I stated that also sounded a bit difficult. He came up with a third option for me which I also felt too hard to do. And at that point, still happy, he said, “Just do what you want Mimi.” And he meant it. He would be content no matter what I designed.

As most of you know, I watched the boys one day a week from the time they were born until they went to school. What a delight! One of the things that fascinated me was how they each saw the world. Konnor began talking early and had no problem sharing his observations about…well, about everything. Callan, on the other hand, was on the quiet side, like his PopPop. Content to let others do the talking while he listened and observed. Oh, he talked, but lengthy conversations were not his thing.

This went on for a while and I grew to enjoy our time together even without long conversations. Then one day, he just started talking…and talking…and talking. And singing, too. Loudly. Car rides became noisy and entertaining. The house seemed to be filled with twice as much activity and fun. His enthusiasm was contagious as it continues to be today.

Callan seems to find great delight in life and wants to share that with the world. And I think the world needs more people like Callan. Enough with the Debby Downers and Sour Susans. Give me a parcel full of Happy Callans and life will be very good indeed.

One of Callan’s big thrills this year (the biggest being getting an X-Box from Santa) has been in learning. He seems to really enjoy discovering new things and takes great pride in his academic accomplishments. Often, for fun, he just gets out a math workbook and completes page after page. (Yup, I said he does math for fun!)

His sense of humor is also expanding. When I ask occasionally about his homework, he states “Mimi, I’m in Kindergarten; I don’t have homework.” Then he rolls his eyes as if to say “Gee Mimi, you should know that.”

It’s also fun to watch him work the controls of that coveted X-Box. It doesn’t seem that long ago when he was content to push buttons and pull levers that had nothing to do with the on-screen action. Now, he’s like all the other big kids. Without needing instruction, he pushes and pulls, breezes through menus and just figures things out for himself.

Like his cousin Addie, he’s growing up. Much too fast. But I’m trying hard not to rush things and to just enjoy him for today. It’s easy to find myself wondering about his future endeavors but for now, this Mimi is content watching T-ball games, seeing him play in the rain with his brother, enjoying his interactions with his cousins (my sweet granddaughters). In short, I’m completely happy just watching him as he grows up. And I’m completely blessed.

My friend Karen recently posted a picture of her blessing wall…a wall with photos of her grandkids. Isn’t that perfect! My grandkids are my blessings as well. And I thank the Lord daily for the joy they bring to my life.

Happy 6th birthday, dear Callan. I love you…to Heaven and back!

Mimi

A fresh start.

Recently, daughter Kate sent me a photo of a little project she completed and her caption was “Never throw away that which can be repurposed.” Immediately I could imagine our Lord saying this about us. He never gives up on us and always views us with the eyes of Someone who knows what we are becoming or what we are capable of becoming. And He sees beyond what’s currently there and looks instead on the potential to come.

Old to NewJust look at the photo. What was once a very old metal kitchen colander that most would throw away has been transformed by Kate because she saw its potential. A coat of primer followed by a fresh new topcoat and that colander has become a beautiful, purposeful planter.

We are reminded in Scripture that this is exactly what God does with His kids. He doesn’t see us as cast-offs without a future. Instead He repurposes our lives for His purposes.

Reminder from 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NLT): This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!

Feeling rusty? Feeling like a has-been? Feeling a bit tossed aside and useless? Cheer up, my friend. God isn’t finished with you. And a new life has indeed begun!

Mimi

National Grandparents Day – September 13

Hi all, just passing along some info I received from technology giant Intel wanting to inspire families to celebrate Grandparents Day by offering activities the generations can use for fun ways to bring them together by trading favorite skills that may become lost.

Please check out their great ideas. And whether your families are together or miles apart, the activity sheet provides some terrific ways to celebrate the day, especially with help from technology.

Mimi

Link to Intel’s Activity Sheet for Grandparents Day

This Mimi didn’t have a clue!

Clue GameSummer is winding down and there are only a few Mondays with Mimi before school begins on August 24. No sleepover this week; instead I drove to the boys’ house to spend the day with them there. And boy did we have fun!

I went prepared with a craft and some cookies to decorate. As you can see from the pictures, decorating and then eating the cookies was a big hit.

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We never did get to the craft as the boys elected instead to play some games. We started with Zingo which is a Bingo game with pictures instead of letters. That one was great for both a four-year-old and a nearly seven-year old.

But each time I suggested a different child’s game, Callan (age 4) would point to the adult version of Clue and insist that’s the one he wanted to play. He even broke down in heart-wrenching sobs when I told him it was for grown-ups and he wouldn’t know how to play it. He continued to sob and state emphatically that he did in fact know how to play the game so I finally relented and got the game.

And I quickly found out Callan was right—you don’t have to know how to play the game to enjoy it. The three of us just did our own thing, making up everything as we went along. You should have seen how happy the little guy was to play Clue with his brother and Mimi. I think we ended up playing for nearly an hour.

The lesson: this Mimi didn’t have “a clue” as to what really mattered. In my rigid mind I thought the game was only appropriate for adults who could play by the rules. But I was wrong! We had a blast despite never following a rule or reading the instructions.

There was such a clear contrast between the fun anticipated by Callan at doing his own thing with Clue and the fun I didn’t think was possible because the game was not age-appropriate. It all boils down to being able to look at the world through the eyes of a child. Rules, schmools! Sometimes you just have to throw caution to the wind and GO FOR IT!

So that’s my encouragement for the week. When it comes to enjoying time with your grands, just go for it. Don’t worry about how you look dancing to the Wiggles. Don’t let a little rain keep you from playing in it. Who says you can’t dress up in ridiculous clothes and pretend to be someone else or enjoy smearing purple icing on cookies and covering them with sprinkles.

Let’s abandon some of our restraint and embrace our inner child and just enjoy the moment, especially when those moments are spent with our grandkids.

Mimi

Racing Sandals in the Rain (more summer fun)

Dancing in the rain, Mondays with Mimi, summer rain, Pinterest pins, summer fun, fun with the grandkids, playing in the rain, Mondays with Mimi, friendship, enjoying time together

So the grands are coming in a few hours for an overnight and I’ve been telling myself all day I need to look at my saved Pinterest pins to find some fun projects to do with them. I’ve diligently saved all sorts of craft ideas and treasure hunt lists so I was fairly certain I’d find just the right thing.

Then two minutes ago I was reminded once again that the simple things that don’t require expense, time, or planning are often the most fun. Case in point…racing sandals in the summer rain. Take a peek.

A simple spur-of-the-moment idea that obviously thrilled both boys and Mom, too. It reminded me of when Konnor was about 2 and we had one of those famous summer downpours Orlando is famous for. Part of our yard contains a swale and it filled with water to the point that when you walked on it, you sank about 8”—which was just perfect for entertaining a two-year old for quite a while.

And while I know grandkids can be easily satisfied, sometimes I forget it’s that way with adults, too. Maybe you’ve experienced the same thing. You have a friend you want to invite over but think you need to put on the Ritz to show how much you value her. Because you don’t have the time to do that, you skip the visit hoping to reschedule in the future.

Or you make plans to meet at a nearby restaurant lamenting that you’ll each be spending $15 just to have a gab session when a coffee at Panera or enjoying the Wendy’s value menu together would serve the same purpose.

Let’s put away our own preconceived ideas of what constitutes a fun afternoon for the grandkids or a good time with friends. After all, it really is about being together and enjoying time with each other. Let’s not be so hard on ourselves or expect so much that we miss the wonderful every day opportunities God provides to connect with others.

Now, this Mimi needs to close right now because my swale is full of rain and calling me to do the sloppy, muddy happy dance outside with my grands.

Mimi