I sent this Calvin comic to members of my family, and my sister, Carole sent me back an e-mail regarding her daughter, Regan who I must admit was the most precocious child I have ever known:
I really think that Calvin and Regan are of the same mindset. I had a conversation with her about heaven when she was nine. I told her that if she continued behaving the way she had been, she would not be able to get into heaven…..(well it worked for Mom to say that!!). Her response to me was, “You have not been to heaven, so how would you know how bad is bad enough for God to not let me in!!”
LOL……………this is the very same child who at the age of four was confronted by Carole, who asked in exasperation: “Regan, why can’t you ever just do what I tell you to do????” To which Regan, with tears in her eyes replied, “I try Mommy, but the bad side of my brain tells me to do it, and the good side of my brain tells me not to do it………..and the bad side always wins!!”
Oh yes, we Clark sisters have many such stories that could have earned us a pretty penny, if we had only had the ambition to figure out how to market our funny and challenging children!! I, having moved way beyond ambition, have merely been focusing on my children’s children in order to better document for my family’s posterity, through pictures and video, the various personalities and antics of the “gang of ten” grandchildren!! Take for example, Josh and Mayce…………they are an interesting and entertaining duo. Josh has always been very solicitous of Mayce…..getting the booster seat for her whenever it is time to sit down for a meal, making sure she is happy by sharing his toys or getting her a snack or something to drink. Mayce, on the other hand, is quite happy to have all of this attention when she wants it, but her charming and demure personality can suddenly turn cranky and ill-tempered as it did last Sunday. While we were all at Christine’s for dinner, the twosome were having a great time giggling, running around the house, etc…………………until a black cloud seemed to descend on Mayce from out of nowhere, and suddenly she decided that she wanted nothing to do with Josh. Poor, poor Josh………he tried to win her over by putting his arm around her and when that didn’t seem to work, he tried putting his face in front of hers all the while declaring over and over and over again, “Mayce, you are my best “fweind”. At any rate, whatever it was that caused Mayce to turn on Josh was not going to be easily overcome. There is a saying in the Clark family that whenever a toddler becomes crabby and uncooperative, we simply state, “He/She is just tired!” and that would let the parents off the hook so to speak. LOL Given this amusing relationship between these two, I turned on my video camera while I was watching the two of them for a couple of hours one day last week. The end result of that video, after some minor editing, can be viewed at the end of this blog. (if anyone is curious). :-)
Here in Ohio, fall has finally taken hold………..which brings up a question…… why must the trees with their beautiful lush, green leaves in the summer and their gorgeous, vibrant, orange, yellow and red leaves in the fall……….why must those leaves “fall” to the ground???? I mean……why couldn’t they just simply disintegrate right there on their branches??? Is it so the hardware stores can increase their profits with sales of rakes, leaf blowers, and lawn/leaf bags in the fall (because, heaven forbid, we can no longer burn those leaves!)?? Or is it so someone with an OCD mindset will be forced to turn her attention away from political blogs, “put her two feet on the floor”, grab her rake, leaf blower and lawn bags and head outside to restore “order” to her unkempt and littered yard?? Just asking. Anyway, last Friday I went out to the yard while the TGIFriday grandchildren were at my house and as it was a fairly decent day weatherwise, I decided to attack some of those pesky leaves and prune back some perennials. Well, one by one a few of the kids followed and were surprisingly eager to pitch in. Tommy and Sydney opted to prune the hydrangea, Natalie took over the lawn mower and Sam and Luke took turns with the leaf blower………I comandeered the rake and together we made pretty good progress. At one point I heard Sydney tell Tommy…………”This is the most fun I have ever had”!! LOL (Christopher are you listening?). Of course, after about a half hour they all gradually fizzled out and returned indoors, but hey!! a little help is better than no help!!
Apparently, Nana is making some impact on a couple of the grandkids in another area of their lives. One day last week Jennifer stopped over with Natalie and Ryan and Natalie proceeded to tell me (quite proudly, I might add) that she had made her bed exactly as she has seen me make it in the past. I told her to text me a picture so I could admire her hard work and this photo shows off her bed making skills. Now, not only has Natalie been observant, but so has three-year old Josh. As the little ones usually follow me around whenever they are with me I never hesitate to provide instructions for the various household tasks. For instance, if I happen to be making up a bed, I will show them how to tuck the sheets in and to pull them taut enough on which to bounce a coin. I have explained to them that I learned this little snippet of advice from Papa (a carryover from his basic training days!!). And so it was that I received this text picture from Christopher of what awaited him when Josh called him up to his room one morning. Isn’t it interesting what kids pick up on?? I guess since I can not be known as the “great” singing or dancing or athletic Nana…….I will have to be content with knowing that I will be known to them as the “great” neat freak Nana!! LOL
This coming week OSU fans will be celebrating beat Michigan Week and although Michigan is not having their greatest season, we will be playing at Ann Arbor and the Wolverines can redeem their season by knocking off the undefeated Buckeyes. I found these pictures of the OSU football team from 1897 the first year that the two teams played each other and the infamous “snow bowl” game of 1950. At least 9 inches of snow alone had fallen on Columbus that Saturday morning and by game time, the temperature was hovering near zero as 30 mph winds swirled around the stadium. Amazingly, some 50,000 fans made it through the turnstiles where OSU officials did not even bother to take tickets and so any spectator crazy enough to brave the elements could walk right in. Michigan won that game 9-3.
Of course, before the game takes place, we will all be taking time out on Thursday to give thanks to our God for all of His many blessings. This year our large ensemble will gather at the old homestead on Oakland Park with Christine and Mike hosting the day’s festivities. No matter where Thanksgiving Day finds us gathering, and no matter what our personal circumstances may be this year, by looking at the “glass half-full” as Crick would do, we will be able to view life’s challenges with a grateful heart. Curiously, today’s devotional reading reflects on exactly this point.
Thankfulness takes the sting out of adversity. That is why I have instructed you to give thanks for everything. There is an element of mystery in this transaction: You give me thanks (regardless of your feelings), and I give you Joy (regardless of your circumstances). This is a spiritual act of obedience-at times, blind obedience. To people who don’t know me intimately, it can seem irrational and even impossible to thank Me for heartrending hardships. Nonetheless, those who obey Me in this way are invariably blessed, even though difficulties may remain.
Thankfulness opens your heart to My Presence and your mind to My thoughts. You may still be in the same place, with the same set of circumstances, but it is as if a light has been switched on, enabling you to see from My perspective. It is this Light of My Presence that removes the sting from adversity. from Jesus Calling
Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good. His mercy endures forever. Psalm 118:1
May you all enjoy a Blessed and Happy Thanksgiving.