As a young mom back in the day when I had the first four of my children, I joined a Toastmasters Club in the metro area. This group met once a month so it was an opportunity to get out and learn a little more about public speaking.
One of the first tasks in the group was to learn how to tell a joke in public. I got up to the podium and said, “My husband told me not to say this but…” The group burst out laughing. I had not even finished my intro let alone my joke! (I should have sat down right then!) “…but I have never told a joke in public!” They roared with laughter again. That definitely was my cue to sit, but I dug my heels in and told the joke which totally flopped! lol!
Over 30 years later (maybe 40) I continue to collect real life stories and such for my someday comedy routine.
When the grandkids come to visit I am always up for helping out with any certain training going on in their little lives. Recently, a few weeks ago, little T came to visit, age 3 and a few months, and in the ending stages of potty training. His number 1’s were going fine. Not the # 2’s. So, during his 3 day stay, he burst out, “I have to go poop, Oma!” So we ran to the nearest bathroom and I closed the door so he could have his pwivacy, as he called it. I told him I would sit outside the bathroom on the chair near the laundry room. He told me when he was done that there was a snake in the toilet! I thought, that sounds ok. Then, I did the poo poo dance: I yanked off a 2-3′ piece of t.p. and danced around waving it while celebrating T’s victory! “Great job, T! I’m so proud of you!”
Just a few days ago, T came to visit with his family. “I have to go poop, Mom! But I want Oma to help me!” I ran into the house with him and he asked for his pwivacy again. There wasn’t exactly a snake this time but he went. I’ll spare the details. As he finished flushing and such, he said, “Oma, do that poop dance!” So I tore off the 2-3′ long piece of t.p. and did my thing!
Back to the local library and I found a book called The Secrets of Happy Families by Bruce Feiler. Although I did not agree with everything in the book, I was so intrigued by some information in the chapter titled: The Right Way to Have Family Dinner. Telling stories about your history and your family’s history is so very very important in raising our children and grandchildren. Children need to know they are part of a bigger picture, part of a larger family.
It’s important for the children to know where you grew up, how you met your spouse, some of the joys and trials and more. Having a strong intergenerational self is important for the children to be able to grow up, be resilient, and move forward.
Grandmas, it turns out, are central to the wellness of the child. When a problem comes up, tell a story about a relative who had a similar trial and how it worked out. When you are eating a meal and telling these stories, it’s win win. Eating together is nurturing. Eating with family, hearing these stories, is nourishing. Being able to hear the stories and then putting yourself into the family history is so key. Let the children know that they are part of a bigger picture.
A lifelong study of mine is going through the book of Proverbs in the Bible.? Presently, I am reading through the Proverbs, in addition to? studying from Proverbs commentary by Charles Bridges.? This particular commentary is from The Geneva Series of Commentaries.? I am just reading/studying a few verses at a time.? I keep a spiral notebook on the table and notate each verse that includes a specific word.? In my notebook, the first page has WISDOM at the top.? On it are already listed and written out over 20 verses about wisdom in just the first 3 chapters of Proverbs.?? The next several topics are: instruction, understanding, justice, judgment, equity, subtilty (this is needed, by the way, to tell the difference between truth and error), knowledge, discretion, learning,? and many more.? I am already on my second page of notes pertaining to wisdom.? Here are a few verses:
Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.? For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold; she (WISDOM) is more precious than rubies, and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared to her.? Length of days is in her right hand, and in her left hand riches and honour; her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace; she is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her:? and happy is everyone that retaineth her.
Charles Bridges reminds us:
“Who does not admire this glowing picture of happiness?? This wisdom of this world affords no such happiness.? Yet cold and barren is admiration, without an interest in the blessing.? The happy man has found a treasure, where possibly he least expected it, under the chastening of the Lord.? David and Manasseh found ‘God’s house of correction to be a school of instruction.’? Under all circumstances, however, prayerful diligence in the search of wisdom ensures success.? The naturally wise man is a fool in heavenly wisdom.? The man of prayer getteth understanding, draweth it out to light, as out of the hid treasure…Here the wise man, himself enriched with the merchandise of fine gold points out to us a better merchandise.? It is the search for ‘the pearl of great price,’ MORE PRECIOUS THAN RUBIES, YEA, THAN ALL THINGS THAT COULD BE DESIRED.? So the Apostle judged.? So upon a trial he found it.? All the world’s show, all his former valuable ‘gain, he counted as dung and dross’ for ‘the true wisdom’ _ ‘the excellency of the knowledge of? CHRIST JESUS his Lord.’? NEVER WILL SOLID HAPPINESS BE KNOWN WITHOUT THIS SINGLENESS OF JUDGMENT AND PURPOSE.? THIS INESTIMABLE BLESSING MUST HAVE THE THRONE.? THE WAVERER AND THE HALF-SEEKER FALL SHORT.? DETERMINED PERSEVERANCE WINS THE PRIZE. (Philip.? 3:12-14)