Tag Archives: children

The simplest toy

“The simplest toy, one which even the youngest child can operate, is called a grandparent.” — Sam Levenson There are colorful toys, singing toys, funny toys, educational toys, old-fashioned toys, and toys that wear out quickly.  Grandparents are all of the above.  Every child should have at least one or two – hopefully more!  If your child …

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Not a child

“My dog is not a child substitute, according to its pediatrician.” — Rita Rudner On a recent weekend visit, Drew and Megan were laughing about their having unintentionally referred to Grady as “Pasha” a couple of times.  I laughed too, but before the weekend was over, I had done it myself.  It’s an easy mistake to …

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The world’s best teachers

“Children and animals are the world’s best teachers– but very few adults really want to be educated.” — Ashleigh Brilliant Educators have long known that learning is optimal when the lessons are engaging and fun.  What better teachers, then, than animals and children?  I hope there are more adults wanting this sort of education than …

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Do not cease to play

“We do not cease to play because we grow old, we grow old because we cease to play.” — George Bernard Shaw Everybody who needs more fun time, raise your hands.  OK, that’s settled…we need to make more time  for play! Of course, when I say “play” I’m not talking about watching TV, or even playing “Angry …

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Something absolutely new

“The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new.” — Rajneesh (Osho) As most readers know, I normally schedule these posts well in advance, usually by about two weeks.  However, today I am making an exception and …

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Carry your childhood with you

“If you carry your childhood with you, you never become older.”  — Tom Stoppard Here it is: photographic evidence that a lot of things about me haven’t changed in nearly half a century.  I still love cats.  I still love yellow.  I still wear my hair in a bun often (no wisecracks about librarians here).  And the camera, well, …

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You wouldn’t be ashamed

“So live that you wouldn’t be ashamed to sell the family parrot to the town gossip.” — Will Rogers We don’t have a family parrot, but we have something a bit more risky: a son with an exceptional auditory memory (which tested at the level of a 13-year-old when he was in kindergarten) and a …

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A big journey

“Childhood isn’t just something we ‘get through.’ It’s a big journey, and it’s one we’ve all taken. Most likely, though, we’ve forgotten how much we had to learn along the way about ourselves and others.” — Fred Rogers One of the most sobering things about being around children is the realization that everything we do …

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More than a hundred

“One father is more than a hundred schoolmasters.” — George Herbert Watching someone fight bravely the battles Jeff has fought these past 9 months, it’s easy to get overly sentimental about him.  Yet I think I can say without exaggeration that I have never known a man more devoted to his wife and children than …

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After ecstasy

“After ecstasy, the laundry.” — Zen saying Perhaps no quote can so succinctly capture the experience of parenthood, especially in its early stages.  The unsurpassed joy of holding a newborn baby is quickly tempered by the grinding realities of sleep deprivation, miscellaneous messes to clean up and a never-ending pile of laundry to be done.  Yet there is joy even …

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Memory is a child

“Memory is a child walking along a seashore. You never can tell what small pebble it will pick up and store away among its treasured things.” — Pierce Harris Memory is nothing if not selective in what it retains.  Hence five people may truthfully give five different accounts of the same event.  Yet some memories …

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New possibilities

“Play energizes us and enlivens us. It eases our burdens. It renews our natural sense of optimism and opens us up to new possibilities.” — Stuart Brown, MD If you have a favorite hobby, sport or other recreational activity, why not schedule some time for play this week? On the other hand, if you don’t …

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A happy talent

“It is a happy talent to know how to play.”  — Ralph Waldo Emerson Sometimes we confuse recreational activities with play, but the two are not always linked.  It’s possible to turn recreation– especially organized and scheduled pursuits– into just another task on our to-do list.  It’s also possible to play while engaged in duties that  most people …

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So much faster

“They outgrow us so much faster than we outgrow them.” – Jodi Picoult Drew and Grady flew in to see us on Matt’s birthday. I had not seen Grady in nine months, and during that time he went from a somewhat precocious four year old to a very mature five year old. His birthday is …

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Bursting the bounds

Because today’s quote is long, I’m going to save it for the end and try to keep my comments relatively short. I found myself unable to find any part of the passage that could be cut out into a short sentence or two. In addition to sharing a birthday with each other, Jeff and I …

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Geniuses

“A certain group of geniuses can easily learn even the world’s most difficult languages: they’re called babies.” — Ashleigh Brilliant Are you bilingual, or (even more impressive) do you speak several languages fluently? If so, I envy you. I’ve always wished that I could communicate in many different languages. I suppose it’s because I like to …

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How beautifully difficult

“A child is a guest in the house, to be loved and respected– never possessed, since he belongs to God. How wonderful, how sane, how beautifully difficult, and therefore true.” – J. D. Salinger As I think about it, “beautifully difficult” is an excellent way to describe what it’s like to have children around.  I …

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The keeping-place

“Christmas is the keeping-place for memories of our innocence.” — Joan Mills I couldn’t find anything about who Joan Mills was, but she must have had memories of Christmas that were similar to my own.  For me, no other time of year brings as deep a connection to childhood. Perhaps it’s the combination of scents, sights …

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Vitally appealing

“The emotional energy created by the critical illness of a child is unlike anything else in a family. The medical situation devours much of the family’s life and leaves its mark on everyone involved: parents and siblings, grandparents and friends. Passions are generated, enormous resources are called upon, any moment can suddenly turn into a …

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A logic all their own

“Summers had a logic all their own and they always brought something out in me…they made me want to believe.”  — Benjamin Alire Sáenz As incredible as it seems to me, the summer is already beginning to wind down.  The days are getting shorter and there have been a few touches of cool weather here …

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So much your own

“Child, who sculpted you, that your face is so like mine and yet so much your own?”       — Joan Walsh Anglund  (I think*) I was about to draft a post for today when I realized something exciting: it’s Grady’s birthday! But without giving you the exact date, or the number of years that …

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Come as children

O men, grown sick with toil and care, Leave for awhile the crowded mart; O women, sinking with despair, Weary of limb and faint of heart, Forget your years to-day and come As children back to childhood’s house.   — Phoebe Cary Today I invite you to set aside a few moments for remembering what it …

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The years teach us

“It is very strange that the years teach us patience – that the shorter our time, the greater our capacity for waiting.” ― Elizabeth Taylor (the novelist) One of the great blessings of having parents who live a long time is the ability to learn from them about how to handle what lies ahead.  As my siblings and …

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The best baby-sitters

“The best baby-sitters, of course, are the baby’s grandparents. You feel completely comfortable entrusting your baby to them for long periods, which is why most grandparents flee to Florida.” ― Dave Barry OK, you can blame this post on Jeff.  I preempted the post I had originally scheduled for this date, because Jeff told me …

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Be with yourself

“Children especially need solitude.  Solitude is the precondition for having a conversation with yourself.  This capacity to be with yourself and discover yourself is the bedrock of development.” — Sherry Turkle Much has been written about the changes technology is bringing to the way we relate to each other.  Does it connect us more closely, …

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