Saturday, 3 August 2013

Great Great Grandpa David Went To School In A Dog Cart

Great Great Grandpa David Went To School In A Dog Cart

I am so glad that we went to see Great Grandma yesterday.  Not only did seeing her reduce my worry it also satisfied Emily and Ruth that she was OK.   

Eric and I passed the 90 minute drive catching up on each others lives.  Thinking about it now I am surprised and a little worried that we can live within 10 minutes of each other, know each other well and yet know so little about each others daily lives. 

August is not the time people normally make resolutions and I am going to make one.  I will have coffee with each of my children at least once every three weeks.  I do not want to miss out on their adulthood by being consumed by my Grandchildren and my life.  I realize that this is an easy trap to fall into as a Grandparent.  I love my children and I believe that a mother I still have a great deal to offer them and for them to offer me.

Great Grandma was up and dressed when we arrived.  She had been going through some boxes that she was given from her older sister’s home.  There was one last box to go through so Emily, Ruth and I helped her with this.  Emily found a treasure in the form of an old note pad that I remember always sitting beside the old black dial phone at my Grandfather’s home. 

And at the bottom of the box she found two rolls of paper.  Well she sat down and would have spent the day drawing if it were not for going out to eat.  Ruth found a square paper weight that she was enthralled with.  While the girls and I were going through the box Mom took Eric into her bedroom and gave him two harmonicas, one for him and the other for his brother Alexander.  These harmonicas belonged to my Grandfather.  I have a very faint memory of camping at Chesley Lake and Grandpa David taking out a harmonica in the evening and playing.
A cabin at Chesley Lake Ontario CA not the one we stayed in but how I remember ours looking

Once we were all back in the living room again Grandma told Eric, Emily and Ruth a story about Grandpa David. 
Grandpa David
One day when Grandpa was a small boy he had a very difficult day.  One of those days where you cannot live in your skin and so everything and everyone irritates you.  Grandpa’s mother was worried and somewhat upset with him and they had words.  The next morning when she went to get Grandpa David out of bed (Grandma Audrey starts to cry here) he cannot move his body below the waist: infantile paralyzes.  (Grandma Audrey recovers and quickly moves to the point of the story) To get to school Grandpa David used a Dog Cart.  In the summer his cart had wheels and in the winter skis. Grandma Audrey knowing she has the girls interest describes what she knows of the carts and how how Grandpa David got around then.

Grandma Audrey went on to tell us how as a teenager Grandpa David went to live at Sick Children’s Hospital for a number of years.  That it at the hospital that he attended High School.  The treatment at that time for Infantile Paralyzes and Polio was too spent many hours a day in an iron lung.   

When Grandpa D. came out of hospital he walked with one cane and one crutch and this is how I remember my Grandfather.  A competent man who would not let a physical disability stop him from doing anything.  Grandma Audrey ended her story by telling us about how he drove car. 

Grandma Audrey as a little girl with her father Grandpa David
All of us were captivated by Grandma’s retelling of her father’s early life.  I cannot tell you how blessed we all are to have Great Grandma and that she is willing to bring to life her father, my Grandfather, Eric’s Great Grandfather and the girl’s Great Great Grandfather in her stories of him.  This is how we live forever.  We do it in the stories that generations to come will tell about us.  It is in how we will be remembered.

Grandma Snyder

©2013- 2015 twosnydergirls

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Grandparents in the Middle

Grandparents in the Middle

The blog that I intended for tonight will have to wait.  Instead I want to share my experience today of being in the middle of two generations that I have a responsible to.  

 My parents the Great Grandparents

and my Grandchildren

 And I consider myself lucky to have three very healthy, self-sufficient, and happy children who require nothing more of Paul and I than we love them unconditionally.  That is very easy to do. 

Tomorrow Emily, Ruth and I were to visit their Great Grandmother.  Both girls were excited about this trip because we would be staying overnight: we were going on an adventure.  

As life will have it Mom called to say she was not feeling up to having us: she has a very sore neck.  Suffering from muscle pain myself I know that neck pain over time wears you down and I agreed with Mom, we would come another time and I tried to get her to agree for me to come down alone: no.   I was worried because I knew Mom was also looking forward to this weekend: I did not want her to be in pain, lonely and disappointed.

The girls were disappointed and worried about their Great Grandma so I made plans with Eric (their father) to leave early tomorrow morning and have a short visit with Mom.  We would arrive in the morning the time of day she said she is at her best and take her to lunch if she is up-to-it.    

So I called Mom with the new plans and I had to convince her. 
·        “No Mom it is not too much for me”
·        “Yes Mom the girls do worry they love you”
·        “No Mom you are not a bother”

So I will pick up my son and Granddaughters tomorrow at 8:00 am and take them to see Great Grandma. 

One problem solved!

Around 8:30 pm this evening I am just about to start this blog when Great John calls via Skype.  Great Grandma and Great John are a couple the details of how this relationship came about is for another blog.  Needless to say we all love Great John very much because he loves Great Grandma.   

Back to my story, John calls and is looking for help with Window 8 and his new touch screen computer.   

Wanting to help him I work out a system whereby using Skype on one of our computers and calling into John, he was able to see what I was doing on the other Windows 8 touch screen computer.  I was able to show John in real time how to send emails.   

John lives in Jacksonville Illinois and I wish I could be of more help to him.  We did figured out how to send emails because once again he is sending me updates on Cahokia Mounds.

So what am I tying to say?    


The events of today have helped me focus in on two things that bring me joy:

1) Having my Parents alive to share their stories and lives with me, my children and grandchildren. 

   2)    Being able to of  support and to provide care to the generation before me and those that are coming after me.  I do this out of love because Mom and John have provided me support and care and James, Emily and Ruth will provide it to me in the future and I must admit that my children have started to do it now. 

 This is what it mean to be a member of a Family!

Grandma Snyder 

©2013-2015 twosydergirls

Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Family Fun on a Budget

Sidewalk Chalk and the Driveway

     As Newbie Grandparents Paul and I learned a very valuable lesson about how not to entertain Grandchildren.  Wanting our Grandchildren to find our home fun we would go out and purchase what was being advertised and the 'best' toys: yes we/the toys were a hit.  

     Between visits our Grandchildren would grow a little older and what was fun last year was now “for babies”.  So it was that we found ourselves with a toy box full of ‘baby toys’ and we unwittingly were in the process of teaching our Grandchildren to expect new and expensive toys from us.  This is not what we wanted for them or ourselves.  When we thought back on our own experiences as children visiting Grandparents or special family members we  learned a valuable lesson.

Grandpa and Grandma’s house is fun because it is just that Grandma and Grandpa house: it is about the relationship we have with our Grandchildren and that never goes out-of-dated.

 So with only a $3.00 dollar box of sidewalk chalk,
  a driveway cleared of cars,

a stick, duct tape

and lots of imagination  
Grandpa, Grandma, James, Emily and Ruth all enjoyed the most amazing Sunday afternoon.

“It is a happy talent to know how to play” 
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Today James, Emily and Ruth want to play with the toys that their parents played with and luckily we still have a few of those around.  So a word of advice to parents don't give away all of your children's old toys keep a few of the most loved ones for their children to play with.

Grandma Snyder 

Envelope Junk Journal make in a day

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