Sunday, March 28, 2021

We are just full of surprises!

"You're going to be surprised," my hubby said when he got up from MY desk and MY computer, even though he has his own in the same room. "I ordered you something that will fix something."

Yesterday I received an Amazon package and discovered new mouse pads for our computers. Mine was dragging and needed to be replaced. What a nice gesture. He knows how much I love and miss the beach. 

Now I see he had an ulterior motive. Look at the one he chose for his desk. Uh huh! So I decided a little surprise for him was also in order.

                                     Won't he be surprised! Wait until he unwraps HIS package.


Friday, March 26, 2021

Oh the things people say!

Wowser! That second Covid vaccine wiped me out for 36 hours, as predicted. I had chills, and lethargy like I have never experienced. No fever.  Once my babies went home, I went to sleep at 6:00 p.m. Bill said he thought I had died in bed. I was in such deep sleep.Woke this morning energetic, no symptoms. 

Some things I heard this week that made me snicker, raise my eyebrows, and wonder about rude people.

I gave the boys a pan of uncooked rice and plastic eggs to fill and then crack open. When they hooked the tops and bottoms together I'd say, "Oval." 

Two-year-old Charlie insisted, "No, Nanny! Pac Man!" He no longer calls me Nana, he likes Nanny.

When I received my second vaccine, the nurse advised, "Do not take pain reliever. Drink Gatorade to keep your electrolytes up." Then she leaned in and said quietly, "And if you get a severe headache, drink straight tomato juice." She might have been an alcoholic.

I stopped at the Goodwill store. There was a little, old, Italian woman with her older teen grandson ahead of her in line. As the young man at the register was ringing up the boy's purchases, the grandma snatched the sports jersey out of his hands and said, "Now-a you ah listen to me. I will a pay for this. You no seem a too bright, so let me explain. You a take off that price and put it on a my order. You ah get that?" 

Oh dear. It's not that the clerk looked "ah not too bright" he looked stunned.


Sunday, March 21, 2021

What lives in a hole?

I am so happy spring has sprung. Alex, 3 and Charlie, 2 have given me so much joy in the past two weeks. They come to Nana's home preschool on Tuesdays and Thursdays. They are having fun learning, and they think they are just playing. 

I surprised each of them with a homemade pop up bunny. I tied a knot in the thumb, middle finger and pinkie of a surgical glove, inverted it, and drew on a face. Stretched the bunny over a cup, added a tiny hole to insert a straw, and taped the hole so no air escaped. I poked the bunny down in the center of the cup and asked what might live in a hole in the ground. We are learning about the many critters that live  underground. (If you make one of these, tape it to the rim of the cup.)

I encouraged Alex to blow on the straw to discover what comes out of its burrow. When he blew, the bunny inflated slowly, but he kept blowing, and the bunny flew up in the air and landed on his head. He giggled and giggled. Poor Charlie wanted no part of it. "No! I scared. get it away!" 

He needs more time. We went outdoors and looked under large rocks to see if we could find insects and worms waking up. They are enjoying themselves, and so am I.

They loved water play. We predicted which things would sink or float. When they weren't looking I slipped some seashells and decorative turquoise, blue, and green beach themed stones in the pan. Gave them a big spoon and let them go "fishing." Charlie kept saying, "Oh, Nanny this is so shiny!"

Then we fished for magnetic number fishies. Hands on learning, the only way!

Hope you are enjoying the reawakening. Our grass is green overnight! Daffodils are sprouting. I love spring! How about you?

Sunday, March 14, 2021

I've been having palpitations

To say I have been in a panic or on a tangent for a few days would be putting it mildly.

I thought I lost access to my blog. Someone in this house signed onto the computer and watched You Tube videos, because that someone is a gadget guy who watches tutorials before he makes purchases. 

Somehow a password got changed, and I wanted to crawl into a ball and cry. I couldn't figure it out, and although my honey offered, he was unable to recover my blog page.

Today I tried something simple, and it simply worked. Now if I can get it to work again! 

My honey is outside happily smoking a whole chicken, because he is proficient at using his new gadget. And I am happy to be back on Blogger because he watched the tutorial. 

We have both had our first Covid-19 vaccine and feel somewhat protected. Hopeful anyway.

Daffodils have blossomed in our backyard. So much fun helping three-year-old Alex discover signs of spring. he has been turning over rocks in search of worms and bugs that are waking up. He is excited.

 I used to teach my students to recite, "Thank  you, Jesus for my eyes, so I can see the flowers and the butterflies." Now Alex is reciting it. I love having my little guys back on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Charlie had a tummy bug, so he hasn't discovered the worms/bugs yet. Happy spring to you!

Sunday, March 7, 2021

Aw! You know what I mean.

 Bill and I have been together for 32 years. Every single day he makes me laugh.

Today I was taking a shower when he opened the bathroom door and asked, "Are you saving tooters?"

"Tooters? Taters?"


I don't know what you're talking about. I'll be out in a minute."

"Are you saving DIRTERS?" he shouted.

"Oh! Yes, for the boys. Save all the dirters you can."

When their mama was two, we used to babysit her often. She begged us for our dirter. We had no idea what she wanted. She cried and cried. We asked her to show us.

Ashley went to the pantry, rummaged through the trash can, pulled out an empty paper towel tube, put it to her mouth, and pretended it was a horn, "Dirter dir-dir-dir-dirt-dir-dirt! A dirter, see?"

Yes, Bill, save the dirters and tooters.

We had friends visiting from Boston once, and when they heard my daughter tell Ashley to go WARSH her hands, they couldnt believe it. They omitted their "R's and St. Louisans added them.

For the record, after I showered and WASHED, I hooked five tooters together. Won't Alex and Charlie be excited? I suspect they'll call them light sabers.

Any unusual vernacular in your neck of the woods?

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Young children should hop, skip, and jump through early childhood and have FUN learning

Spring has sprung, and I am in my element feeling fulfilled, useful, and HAPPY. I am back to babysitting my great grandsons, Alex, 3 and Charlie, 2. And we are having the times of our lives at Nana Linda's in home daycare/preschool on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Hubby was surprised when he came downstairs to our family room and saw  I had set up a preschool classroom. 

I feel like a flower blossoming. I am excited to help my little guys learn and have fun. My goal is not educational mastery, but educational introduction to skills and concepts, using age-appropriate games and activities. I hot glued plastic egg halves upside down for little hands to match the tops without getting frustrated when they can't actually connect the two pieces yet. They love this and feel successful every time!

I bought this basket, tray, and bag of jelly beans at the Dollar Store. Alex is having fun sorting.

See that blue felt basket? It had the felt bunny face glued on the front. I removed it and cut an opening for it's mouth and slipped it over the opening of the empty water/soda bottle. And I dressed that bunny up but you don't have to. Just a head on a bottle works, too.  They can see the jelly beans landing inside and filling up the bunny. I cut a small opening in the back of bottle to empty. This hand-eye, small motor activity enhances many skills, develops concentration, and is so much FUN.

Alex was so surprised to discover jelly beans inside the dry rice pouring box. I listened to his conversation. "Oh bunny, I will make you egg soup." And he had FUN doing just that as the ceramic bunny watched him do activities all morning.

These two darlings argue and fight, push and shove, scream and yell at home, and sometimes at their Nana's day care. But they are learning that I practice consquences of actions (as I did when I taught pre K for 40 years) And I do not rage or engage when they become obstinate or angry. I do address feelings. "You feel upset, angry etc. I'll help you." 

I use positive speech patterns and encourage them to do so, too.  Say, "I WANT IT NEXT."
Tell him you want a turn. I'll help you wait your turn. To the child who has IT: he WANTS his turn, soon. I will look at my watch and tell you when SOON is.

This technique works and I see social/emotional growth already in my honey-bunnies.

Too often adults want CONTROL This discipline technique requires work, but it does work to gain COOPERATION if adults use/teach children to use positive speech patterns consistently.

 Proof right in the picture that they CAN be in close proximity, share a table top, toys, and have FUN.

I can't say this enough: do NOT focus on misbehavior. Instead of "Hey guys, quit (whining, fighting, shouting)" say "Hey guys, thanks for taking turns and sharing the table and COOPERATING." 

Catch a funny bunny doing something right, instead of wrong.  

When they leave to go home they tell me, "I love preschool."

I do, too.