Saturday, 4 January 2014

Winter Flu

Stay Healthy this Flu Season

I am going to state up front that I am home from work for the second day with a winter flu.  How did I get it? Well, we can trace it back to our beautiful granddaughter.  

Between the stage of our children leaving High School and becoming grandparents of school aged children we had a reprieve from the winter flu bug, or at least it seemed that way.

How as a grandparent can I not pick up and cuddle my ill granddaughter?  Yes, I did and now I have to suffer the consequences – I hate being sick!
What do the expert say we should do to keep the winter flu bug at bay?

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention offers us three basic steps:

Get your flu vaccine as soon as they are available. 

Did I get a flu vaccine this winter? No! I came up with all the excuses listed by the CDC. Will I next year? Yes!

Take everyday prevention actions to stop the spread of germs.  

I did all of this and kissed my ill granddaughter.  At the time it seemed like the right thing to do but in hindsight I missed an important teachable moment.  I could have offered her physical comfort and taught her that when we are ill we do not kiss other people.  
Take Flu antiviral drugs if your doctor prescribes them.  

Great Grandma came down with the same flu for the same reason and she was put on antibiotics.  I am suffering through with over the counter pain medication, copious amounts of water, Echinacea, Zinc, hot baths and sleep.

As we age we are joining the high risk category and with flu viruses becoming stronger and stronger it is a lesson worth teaching and learning from.
When our grandchildren are ill, if possible, ask their parents to keep them home. We can call them on the phone or Skype with them to provide comfort and support.

If you have to provide direct care, which many of you do, talk your ill grandchild about the reason you are washing your hands, or using alcohol wipes and in a loving way tell them up front that there will be no kissing and why.

Grandma Snyder

Note: I am not a doctor or an expert on flu please visit the CDC website and vet all medical advice through your physician.

Graphics without a source are from

©2013-2016 Twosnydergirls

Friday, 3 January 2014

Imaginative Play

 Supporting Imaginative Play

 Maplelea Dolls/ 18 inch Dolls

It has been a long time since I have blogged about Brooklyn and Isabella.   The dolls continue to play an important role in our granddaughter’s world of imagination and play. 
Emily is very interested in horses and farming so it was not surprising that she wanted the stuffed Maplelea cow for Christmas to go with her horse. 

Ruth loves puzzles and has been working through the puzzle of how to get their pet parakeet to speak so it was not surprising that she asked for the Maplelea parakeet.

In their choices of Christmas gifts the girls demonstrated how they are using imaginative play to work through real life questions, goals and desires.
Supporting our children’s imaginative play is a fundamental task of parenting.  Developing imaginative play supports our children in developing strong identities and interpersonal skills.
As parents we made sure that, like our granddaughters, our sons both had stuffed animals and a stuff doll to play with.  As a young parent I was surprised to watch my sons play with the dolls as I had seen girls play.  They nurtured their doll, disciplined them and talked to them.  Providing both girls and boys with dolls and stuff animals allows them to:

  • mimic adult roles through their play;
  • build their social skills and develop problem solving skills;
  • build their ability to think in abstract terms, to be imaginative and to develop flexible versus concrete thinking;
  • practise communication skills, as they talk and listen to their dolls and with other children who are playing with them and
  • learn emotional regulation and how to work through problems.

I remember our youngest son after a very difficult day, one where he was sent to his room, playing with a favoured stuff bear.  He replayed the day taking on the role of the parent and after about 15 minutes, he returned to the living and apologized for his behaviour.  Through his play he came to some understanding of either his behaviour or our role as parents that allowed his to move forward.  I have often wondered which it was and it was important for me to accept his apology without questioning him further.

I often replay a difficult day at work and pretend/imagine that I change the outcome.  In this ways I work through my feelings of frustration, embarrassment or self-blame.  By the time I get home am emotionally balanced again and ready to join the family.  I am utilizing a skill I learned as child – just like my youngest son.

Grandma Snyder

© 2013-2014 twosnydergirls

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Homemade Spaghetti Sauce and Sautéed Vegetables

I want to thank the Italian Food community on Google+ for inspiring my experimentation with gluten free pastes.  

In a sauce pan using 1 tablespoon of Coconut oil sauté:

  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 green or yellow pepper
  • 1 onion
  • 1 package fresh mushrooms
  • 3 cloves of garlic crushed

Until tender (keep warm and set aside)

Course chop four tomatoes add these to the sauce pan that you have removed the vegetables from.

  • Add to this one 1 6oz. can of tomato paste and
  • ½ a cup of red dry wine.
  • Your favourite Italian herb.

Cook your sauce to the consistency that you prefer.

Cook your pasta noodles and toss in 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

I used gluten free noodle.


Grandma Snyder 
 ©2014 Twosnydergirls

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Beginning of a New Year

I have a tradition - on January 1st I take out all of my journals and re-read those treasured pages again.  I have been journaling off and on since I was twelve years old, for 46 years.

Writing down my thoughts, worries, hopes, prayers, inspirational verses and the adventures life put on my path is important to me. 

Paul reminded me recently that when we first met I entrusted him with one of these dreams: to write childrens stories.  I have no memory of telling him this and yes it is a dream of mine.

Written language and I have a love hate relationship I love to write and my learning disability means I frequently butcher the English language despite my best efforts. 

I never edit myself when I journal, I write with abandon without a thought to who might read them they are messages from me to me and I will leave instructions on what is to be done with them upon my passage from this life.

You might think that after reading my first journal writings 45 times I might be tempted to skip over the writings of my 12 year old self - No.  With each passing year her words, bring new meaning to me and challenge me to grow spiritually.

I have come to understand myself through my journals.  There are themes within those pages that I need to pay attention to.   Worries and fears that must be tackled again and again with each New Year.  Dreams and goals that I have been put off too long.

My yearly tradition has netted me some very positive gains over the years.  For example, my dream of going back to school and indulging in my love of knowledge: I journaled about this often between my 15th and 18th birthday (I dropped out of High School at age 16).  I was encouraged by my own words written on those papers to go back to College and get my Nursing Diploma at age 18, then years later at the age 24 to attend University where over the next 15 years I earned my Bachelor of Social Work and again five years ago when at the age 51 I returned for my Masters of Social Work.  

Teaching my grandchildren the value of writing down their thoughts, hopes and expectations of themselves and life is important to me.  Writing and encouraging children to write is a theme that appears often in my blog.

Instead of making New Year's resolutions I sit down with the past and embrace the self-awareness, love and encouragement that I find there.   I listen to the younger Marjorie, and honour her struggle.   I review the paths that life has taken me down and I turn around secure in my ability to meet the new adventure that the coming year will bring.

Grandma Snyder

©2013-2015  twosnydergirls

Junk Journal number 16 and 17 flip through

I spent much of the weekend making these two journals to travel to Victoria BC with our son.  I do enjoy making journals. Grandma Sny...