My wife and I watch two granddaughters, ages 1.5 and 3.5, a day each week while their mother works at a part-time job.
It has required us to dust off our parenting skills and, while feeling our late-60s ages, we are able to have a pleasant day.
We are able to give them much of our time, time we didn’t have when raising our own children because of jobs, and are realizing that this is what grandparents do best.
Both girls enjoy the attention and seemingly simple things take a special quality, such as today when my 3-year-old granddaughter and I were playing catch only a few feet apart with a large ball.
My wife and I took them for a short walk on our little-traveled gravel road. The girls saw wild roses that would bloom in a few weeks, grasses that were heading out, and the progress of their daddy’s soybeans in the field.
My wife spotted a dragonfly resting at the edge of the road. She had the girls look at the dragonfly’s almost clear wings.
Then the 3-year-old moved to change position and stepped on the dragonfly taking the fly out of the dragonfly.
While we are showing them the wonderful things in this world, they are showing us how to look at things with complete innocence.
When my sisters and I were very young, my parents bought us a set of the Encyclopedia Britannica and a set of the Book of Knowledge.
Think of it, a mere 20 volumes that contained knowledge and an encyclopedia to back it up.
While my sisters and I looked up things we were curious about in those books, I don’t believe we did them justice considering all the subjects they covered.
My granddaughters will never know about using an index book to find information on a subject and by the time they are in high school, it is entirely possible Google will be replaced by something bigger and better, although I can imagine what.
In high school, I took a summer course in typing, never knowing that there would be a day when a keyboard would be in daily use and approach being a requirement to get anything done.
It is looking like touch screens will replace keyboards and voice commands will replace touch screens. Then what?
For all the advancement in technology, one of the favorite things we do on our weekly visit, especially on a nice day, is blow bubbles.
And they never fail to produce laughter as we watch them blow in the wind.
Today’s bubble blowing event was held after lunch, where peanut butter and jelly sandwiches were served by request.
There was also time for rock climbing on a rock retaining wall.
It was a good day for young and old.
Playing catch, blowing bubbles, climbing rocks – all at a time when we have satellite communication, smart phones at our finger tips doing amazing things with ease, and more knowledge about our surroundings than we can ever appreciate.
It is a refresher course about the pleasure of simple things and it restores my soul.
My granddaughters don’t know what great teachers they are.
Rye is a Farm News staff writer and farmer from Hanlontown. Reach him by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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