You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Children’ tag.

(A Morgan-Franquemont reunion about 1951) Click the pic for a larger view.

Maybe I thought my sister might drop me—why else would I be crying?—pretty sure that’s my best diaper.

Remember being young for just a minute. There’s no hassle waiting to destroy the next minute, no bus, train, plane to catch or deadline to meet. No, you’re just young. Your skin is soft without a blemish and your hair shines like  grass after a brief rain.  You’ve learned to comb your hair but your not exactly sure why you do it. There’s no need to worry and everything feels right once your parents are home; the fire place sets itself and your dog is always fed. T.V. goes on past bedtime but you’ve seen everything you wanted to see and the day has come and gone like any other. Dreams come and go like the wind without cause or problem or forecast direction.

Everything just is. Do you remember now? Shoes or belts seemed useless unless you were playing dress-up.

(Our Son-in-Law running after his son.)

The world is an empty beach to run with dad close behind.

The sky is endless and full of mysterious clouds to watch as they drift by.

(My cousin’s son, Ross Franquemont, takes a selfie as he flies by the Northern lights in his U-2 plane.)

Remember the first time you stared at the clear night sky and realized there were more and more stars to see up above as your eyes adjusted to the blackness. Remember the morning dew on your bare feet. This is about the time you discovered ,’brain-freeze.’

There was so much to take in and share with your cousins and friends.

A la speed-o suit; that’s me.(Morgan dock at Lake Bonaparte-about 1956) ( AND… the person who edits this glob weekly* asked a good question: why am I the only one wearing a bathing suit? The dock is clearly wet?!?! Hmmmm)

Days come as easily as picking up a pencil. The scribbling on the paper wears a smile and it seems your masterpiece is, in fact, a heroic depiction of something meaningful to older folks—it’s some miraculous sketch of objects you’ve yet to see or a panorama of places everyone hopes to go. It’s good to be loved. Daylight loves you; nighttime is a blanket. The rain sounds loud upon the window pane and snow dances in street lights with winds that come from the moon you can’t see.  The pets always sleep on your bed.

Everyday is safe. Every night is cozy. You get along with other  kids, even with those who seem so different!

Being young harbors within it a certain kind of peaceful hope.

(View of Lake Bonaparte from our ‘half-way’ dock.)

Without notice, you assume the older folks will always be here.

Life seems a garden of acceptance.

You can wear any hat you want when you’re young!

(And on Youth Services hat day because we could.)

Routines begin to form. If it rains, you stay inside. If it is sunny you go out. Parents rush off in the morning and come back later after your nap but you’re never really alone, not that you’ve noticed or ever thought about. Tooth brushing is a daily important thing, not the best, but you watch as globs of toothpaste slide out of your mouth onto your cheeks around your out-stretched smile in the mirror and it tastes sweet. Tooth paste types change from being white, then striped, sometimes dotted or with a hidden line of stuff surrounded by white. You just do it.

You think broccoli may kill you but not if you eat just a bit. Vegetables are stupid but they’re the gateway to dessert.

I once thought food first filled my feet, legs, then my middle section, then my arms and finally my head: that’s when I was full. I made sure to save room in my head for dessert.  People talked over dinner but mostly we all came to eat. Someone would say something funny and we’d laugh but always, without fail, my dog’s head was near my lap, soft, warm, nudging my legs occasionally for that bit of something I didn’t care to eat or wanted to slip him anyway.

I hadn’t a care when I was young. Music filled the air and dancing had no steps, just movement.

Of course, I learned later in life that my life was not a universal experience. No, while I was in college there were children in Vietnam who awoke in the night to run out of their homes in fear Napalm bombs would hit their homes and burn them alive as it had some of their friends the night before. And other children weren’t lucky enough to live at all but died without ever knowing what a refrigerator was. Somehow, learning the truthful horror about some life on earth during my twenties put much of my childhood experience in a time-capsule that I cemented in a corner stone of myself.  My memories were too good sometimes to be shown in the face of another’s reality.

I’d been given so much and never knew. I’d been raised in the midst of modest but successful homes full of choices, flavors, designs, music,  friends and surrounded by mowed yards and shoveled driveways all owned by smiling people.

If you’re life was like mine, it’s okay. It’s okay that we may have been born some of the luckiest people on earth. Thing is, now it’s our time to give thanks. Now, if we haven’t already, it’s time for us to payback life anyway we can.  We have to fight for what we believe is best for this earth and give thanks to those who died for our right to do so. If we have something to teach, we have to do it. I think Thanksgiving has never seen a generation who has more to be thankful for than mine. Now, more than ever before, it’s time for my generation to stand up and speak about what we feel is right.

My generation owes the World a difference.

We can do this. It’s time to be young again, strong, wide-eyed, questioning and full of spirit. Spirits don’t age like our bodies, not really. Look in that mirror as you did as a child and see your face, see your smile and remember who you really are. You’re one who can make a difference.

We all can get along; we have to get along and help each other prosper—this is our task and purpose.

Franque23—Happy Thanksgiving.

*Barbara Mullenix gets all the credit for anything spelled correctly in these globs and none of the blame for all the rest….






Mom takes a look....

Mom takes a look….My first born has her second born….

It got me thinking…

Gainesville back in the day

Gainesville back in the day-you tell me when? Anyway, it was at least a simpler time, call it a slower moving time? in some ways …

Of course, the grass always looks greener-back then there was no internet and maybe three stations on TV. Calls were made through operators; there were no fancy coffees but for Maxwell house which  even Millionaires couldn’t buy …

But some things don’t change…like having babies and keeping that eternal on going string of humanity going, or not… Lots of great people, some we base our thinking upon, chose for whatever reason not to have children—* Way too numerous to list,,we can just remember Newton, Mother Teresa, both Wright Brothers, Beethoven ,Chekhov and Poe to name a few who didn’t have children.  It’s not mandatory that a person have children, but how people have avoided that  DNA driven push to go on I haven’t a clue–I couldn’t.(of course, some couldn’t have children) I was 30ish when a brick like feeling hit my head and said, “Have children,” so I proposed and, thankfully, my wife did have three.


Home sweet home-

Home sweet home-way back in the day….(1750)

It was back in 1750 when the man who lived in this castle sired all the Von Franquemonts/ Franquemonts that are in the world today—err, I bear the name. He liked having babies…and his 50  or so kept women gave him plenty. His name was Karl Eugen, and at the time, I guess his legitimate wife(s) didn’t mind the flock.

I’ll be going to this castle soon,,,and then to the outer rubble of what is left of the Von Franquemont castle–something to look forward too.

Thing is, and why this post is about children,, is my first-born just had her second born, Kai Louis Bhaca Shiohira was born yesterday 8/15/16 in Cape Town…He’s our 7th Grandchild.

Kelly and Hiro are still dancing!

Kelly and Hiro are still dancing! Parents for the second time… Maya and Kai are lucky to have them as leaders.

The string of humanity is amazing…and the push all parents make to get children grown up is even more mind-boggling. Children are a worry and love that is never forgotten. It was when our children reached 12ish that I realized,,Hey-this isn’t for 18 or 21 years-this is forever… and it’s  great, the forever.

Trouble is, America completely misses the point. Ruled by most businesses who seemingly care not one iota for life, families, children and education of the young, American’s struggle to raise families with shrinking incomes, devalued dollars and the poorest of Family leave benefits when children are born…

In fact….as my cousin’s son flies through the skies,, his photos remind me that this family benefit/leave policy prevalent in the US is upside down….

32271_1446662118859_4151214_n Ross does a flip in the air.

Thing is, if you look at this world-wide graph of benefits given to new moms and dads, you’ll see American’s get the short shaft when it comes to having time off, paid time off mind you, to bring their children into this world in a loving, home giving environment..


So, Basically, America as it is now stands to give no credence to the new family, the new child, the new life-the one the entire world depends upon if we are to continue.

Babies are legacies

Babies are legacies, and so much more,,,the future.

It's a growing world

It’s a growing world..How could the United States be one of just nine countries to offer no set leave time to new moms and dads as a National law?

the generations before and after us are the point

Our generation and the generations before and after us are the point.

The laws in place for Family Leave after birth in America, or more aptly put, not in place, are just sick. Personally, I find this more than appalling as an American-it’s disgusting. Big business only cares for money; why work for them; why support anything they want when they don’t even give a hoot about new life, the life that will push us forward when we are gone?

Here’s to the children, our new hope for humanity. Right now, I hope maternity leave for both parents changes here in America…isn’t that due?

My generation went to Woodstock because we believed in change--when will we get it?

My generation went to Woodstock because we believed in change–when will we get it?

Our family want to know--When will America change?

Our family wants to know–When will America change, and value children-families?

Franque23 loves his children and Grandchildren…don’t we all.?


We can help a young South African school aged child by donating as little as ten dollars to this link:

This post is about helping school age children who live in South Africa.  47% of the schools in many

districts have no (5)


Kelly Shiohira is organizing this effort through seeking donations from family and friends. Me? I wanted to tell you, my glob-blog readers, about this task at hand … and why I believe that with your help the effort will succeed.

But who is Kelly Shiohira?

Kelly Shiohira is organizing an effort to help students of South Africa. Kelly is dedicated to improving International Education by finding  teaching methods that might better help students assimilate knowledge. I’d imagine there’s nothing like asking a child who speaks the “clicking language” to learn from a text-book printed in English or in any other language as well!

Kelly has her hands full of challenges, but that’s always how she has liked life to be. I know.

Kelly is my  daughter.

Kelly has been in South Africa for over three years now, and before this time she taught English in a Japanese High School for five years. She’s a keen knack for devising well thought out plans and effective ways that might bring vision and intention into action.

As a young child, Kelly took an interest in music.


I rocked with my first-born at an early age. At 17, Kelly’s classical playing abilities earned her the highest rating given by an international review board


Kelly has thought big from the get-go, and has always seemed to be a bit larger than life…

While in college, Kelly continued her childhood fascination and love for  horseback riding by winning a U.S. Southeastern Hunt Seat Championship, and ran an entire stable of horses, giving lessons , etc., while earning her BA at the University of Florida.

One with her horse, Toby.

One with her horse, Toby.

Soon, her quest to learn the hardest language she could think to learn while at University of Florida  led her to go abroad to Japan.

Whle teaching in Japan, Kelly decided she'd like to wander around in the Himalayas with one other person....she did-

and, oh yeah, Kelly passed the official, Japanese government run test to show fluency in the Japanese language while teaching English to Japanese children…

During her time teaching English in Japan, Kelly decided she’d take a trip to the Himalayas with one other person.”Is this safe? Love, Dad.” She went-

And then there’s that annoying trait of hers to always want to be on top of things-the very top.

Really, Kelly? Love , Dad.

Really, Kelly? Love , Dad.

This inner drive is also what landed Kelly earning her black belt in Japan with the guys, breaking this bone or that in the process.293311_10151109849187020_138221013_n

Then came that one year at U of Penn where she was invited to join the Philomathean* Society founded in 1813 for the purpose of founding a society for the advancement of learning. Kelly soon landed a husband and then the two of them packed off for Africa after she’d earned a Masters in International Education, .

That’s really where this post starts and where you and I come into the story.

Why should we donate?

Working in Jo-burg, South Africa, for an educational firm was an eye opener for Kelly. She traveled the bush-land, Swaziland, and other remote places seeing first hand how the rubber meets the dirt roads of education in South Africa. Now, several years later, she is working in absolutely rural areas outside of Cape Town. For many, what Kelly has encountered along her way in this new region might make looking away or closing those opened eyes a reasonable choice, but not for Kelly. She opened her eyes wider, and took a hard look at the logistics and needs of the educational system in the region.

Somethings Kelly has seen there are difficult to read about, and nearly impossible to imagine if you are like me, a working American. I hate to add–in the past 30 days within Kelly’s working region, a 4-year-old child and a 6-year-old child, both in different schools, drowned in toilets that gave way while the children were using them. See? It’s all hard to imagine.

Kelly’s note is below, it explains more, and posts links to where you might help her endeavor to create healthy, working, learning environments for the children in her region. She’s asking for as little as ten-dollar donations….Two links are below, and I note that Kelly thinks the  PayPal  link is a bit harder to use, especially if you don’t have a PayPal account, where the second link is easy.

(the easy link to use to learn more and donate, )

If you know anyone who might help her in this regard……please forward the post…and I hope you now have a good idea of why and how I think this effort will succeed-Kelly’s in the driver seat.

From Kelly Shiohira:

“Hi everyone,

After a long year of working in the most rural of rural schools in South Africa, a friend and I are working hard to set up a charity that will address some of the challenges the children we interact with routinely face. While they are struggling to improve their circumstances and move out of poverty through investing time and energy in education, their lives are endangered by poor school infrastructure and their future success stymied by lack of quality education.

Our plan is to set up a charity in early 2016 with the following objectives:
1. Placing USA and UK Mathematics and Science teachers and students in rural schools in South Africa during their holidays as part of a culture and knowledge exchange.
2. Periodically engaging in community-based development projects such as maths and science Olympiads, local festivals, etc.
3. Helping the schools build safe, eco-friendly toilets and other infrastructure supports desperately needed.
We hope to have our first batch of teachers in place during the Northern Hemisphere Summer holidays, so more about that later. But in the meantime, we thought that we would start with objective 3 and try to raise money over the Christmas period amongst our friends and family to help some schools build safer, cleaner toilets. We would like to ask that instead of sending a Christmas card (I know you are all rushing to the Post Office to send me one!) you might be interested in donating money through  this link….. This is an easy link to use for donations.

We have calculated that £250 / $380 will be enough to build an eco-friendly toilet. The communities will assist in the building but require the material.

To contribute: Please follow this link if you want to use PayPal!

or this one if not….

We will ensure that the money we receive will be placed in a bank under the charity name (which…ideas and suggestions welcome!) and you will have access to the balance, and we will supply you with the details of how/what we purchase and how it is used.

We hope you will join us!” Kelly Shiohira.

So this is it in a nut shell.

I bought a fast food hamburger combo this past week that cost about $6.50. It’s odd to think about how so little of all that we have here in America can do so much in another country.

Cheers, and please help Kelly help the students she’s come to know and love. Help her make it over this next hurdle in her life. If you do, her vision and dream for a better education for African children will come true.

The children are counting on us, and don't even know it.

The children are counting on us, and they don’t even know it.



The Isis and other extremists may be shifting world power, but not in their direction. No, it’s the Russians who are emerging center stage, not just in the Middle East, but on a world-wide front.

Putin has shown his ability to lead his army in the direction he chooses-Detente be damned-he flips the switch and the bombs fall.

bomb-2_3459908bThis picture is captioned: Russians bomb US-backed Syrian rebels.

So yeah, while America remains grid locked on who to blame for just about anything that’s ever happened in our country or elsewhere, Russia has its eye and muscle on its soft southern underbelly, where newly formed countries feature large Muslim population. As a well read, knowledgeable, and longtime friend wrote- “Putin has many dogs in this fight.  14% or so of Russians are Muslims and some, like the radicals in Chechnya, are already terrorists. The vast majority of Central Asia is Muslim.  This includes the so called independent republics of the former Soviet Union like Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. “ *

Russia’s southern frontier and even it’s internal populations have large Muslim populations, and Russia intends to rule these populations with an iron fist without apology.

It's another no brainer.....a hoax head's up!

It’s another no brainer…..a hoax head’s up!……

There is currently a huge hoax e-mail circulating among FB and other sites that fictitiously put very harsh words in the Russian President’s mouth , words that pertain to immigration into Russia…forget those posting….those are bogus.


Putin clearly drew a line in the sand for Muslim populations and other minorities back in 2012…

“On the whole, the adaptation of guest workers is a separate and comprehensive issue. We must create the conditions for immigrants to normally integrate into our society, learn Russian and, of course, respect our culture and traditions and abide by Russian law. In this regard, I believe that the decision to make learning the Russian language compulsory and administer exams is well grounded. To do so, we will need to carry out major organizational work and introduce corresponding legislative amendments. I’d like to ask the Federal Migration Service and other departments to submit specific proposals to the government. These proposals should be openly discussed with ethnic minorities as well as public and religious organizations. This should be mandatory for all guest workers regardless of their future employment.” Putin 2012.

See, Putin’s words don’t exactly throw a warm blanket on the opportunity for immigration into Russia.

No, the Russian stance on immigration into their country reads more like, my way or the highway.

I find myself wondering how the French are feeling about immigration right about now. In America, for sure, we have trucks, planes and ship loads of people who hope to build fences high enough to keep Mexican’s out, and think Muslim is short hand for hooligans, murders and religious fanaticism.

What to do in a world seemingly gone mad? Russia has answered the bell, and may not stop fighting until the entire Middle East is riddled with pot holes the size of bomb blasts. Remember also, Russia has a 1980 score to even in Afghanistan.

President Obama has done an about face on his, “No Boots on the ground,” philosophy toward conflict in the Middle East, but the forces he can command through the America people are minuscule in comparison to the turmoil he hopes to quell. Russia, on the other hand, is willing to bomb the piss out of anyone in the region, and maybe beyond.

In my mind, two scary prospects are building in the Middle East at this time. One, Putin is equipped and well-disposed to take the lead in the fight against terrorism in The Middle East; Two, Halliburton has been pushing the US to safe guard its oil resources located in the Middle East, and all of its future pipeline construction plans.** Is it possible that this money driven world power-Halliburton- might get in bed with another country if America proves too ineffective at maintaining peace so it can go about business as usual? It’s a thought, and maybe you think this idea an impossibility, but Halliburton has never been about America, only about using our country’s troops to build and safe guard its fortunes.

In the end, maybe never soon enough, it does seem America and the world will have to stop talking about terrorism and flat out fight it, house to house, passport to passport, and wiretap to outer space eavesdropping. Russia already has. Terrorism is not a game, but there’s a saying- follow the leader.

Some would say we can educate and feed the Terrorists organizations out of desperate acts and into prosperity. That is certainly taking the high road, and the very long road with regard to the situation. For now it seems the world can’t effectively keep the terrorist out of our places of worship, living and businesses. What to do? Russia will drop bombs-more.


*Thank you reader Marc

**Here’s the low down blog on Halliburton…


My daughter, Kelly Shiohira, is currently working in Africa in the field of International Education and holds a Masters from U. of Penn. She has called for the distinction between pro choice and pro abortion.

“Do not confuse “Pro-Choice” and “pro-abortion”: They are not the same. People have various reasons for being pro-choice. Many of us are feminists: We believe women and their bodies should not be controlled by the patriarchy that still dominates government. Many of us believe in the inherent goodness of people: If you give people a choice – a real choice, where they have the means to ensure their baby is supported – they will make the right one. The corollary is that many of us believe women who do get abortions are in desperate situations and need support rather than condemnation. And many of us are rationalists: We can separate emotion and logic and agree that the systems are not in place to support the population we have, let alone an influx of abandoned children. We see the dangers inherent in banning abortion: Abandoned babies born to the poor in secret and left in dumpsters; illegal procedures both painful and life-threatening; and, if they survive infancy, maladjusted children growing into adults prone to the cycle. We want real solutions for women, not legislation. We want fundraising for the women and children nutrition programme, free access to medical care, early and parenting education programmes. We want a society where no woman feels she has to make that choice, where every child and adult is adequately supported and developed. Then we can talk about legislation.”

Of course, I’m proud of my daughter who reaps some clarity from within the barrage of emotional hog-wash that’s being tossed on the issue of Women’s Rights with regard to abortion. This is not an easy task.


Book one, Avatar Magic, and book two, The Code of Avatar Magic are on kindle now. Please enjoy this Sci-fi romance.

Book one:
Book two:

(Thanks to work matey , Ann, for takin’ ye shots.)

Okay, about three months ago our head honcho team leader of the youth services department mentioned the possibility of a huge pirate ship display…. Basically, I haven’t slept since, but I will tonight.

Ahoy! And a bottle of rum(at home,)

Ahoy! And a bottle of rum(grog at home,)

So yeah, we like to do up, Talk like a Pirate Day…-psst… this ship is 15 feet long and about 7 feet high to the top of ye mast.

Team matey's doin' er justice.

Team matey’s doin’ er justice.

Thing is, we’ve got pigs in the hold….

Shiver ye bacons

Shiver ye bacons

The crew cruisin’ is an odd sort….

kinda a beachy, fishin' crowd...

kinda a beachy, fishin’ crowd…

We have look-outs….

what this oceans needs is a mermaid.......I just might do it.

what ye might meets on the rolling tide—

It's idea time!!!!

It’s idea time!!!!

This is a book you will enjoy reading–and its historical fiction, the protagonist lives in California today….trust me-

Love the book....

Love the book….it be a treasure-

Speaking of love, what this ocean display needs is a mermaid…….I just might do it.

Errrr,, no, maybe not these two...

Errrr,, no, maybe not these two…and I dare ye to walks thee plank here*(interesting talk like a pirate day site….)

Thing is! Ya gotta keep rolling the ideas until they land right.

This is the one Mr. Frog is hopping to find...

This is the one Mr. Frog is hopping to find…

Back to the boat–in all it took five-hours to put up,,,plus, many more to build the three main parts, and all the trimmings. If me had my trunk, I’d laced her up with full riggin’ an two more sail…this ship could’ve taken me all year. I had to wheel clear of too much clock.

Arrrr,,, me Morgan relatives would turn proud to spy ye captain.

Arrrr,,, me Morgan relatives would turn proud to spy ye captain.

We always follow whatever the parrots says-he sounds so much like us… fact, just like us.

squawk for grog.

squawk for grog.

The ship in all er glory,,,,and now to sleep…or rest for a week’s vacation coming my way.

One like the ship i'll be riding next week......

My old fishin’ boat, one  like the ship I’ll be riding next week along with my wife and two grandsons……this be my dock, and fishing lake….Lake Bonaparte, New York.




Book one, Avatar Magic and book two, The Code of Avatar Magic are on kindle now.

1)If I had back all the time I spent getting my three children buckled in their car seats when they were young, I’d be young now.

2) A recent anthropological discovery places a new found ruins in Africa at 200,000 to 300,000 thousand years old*, so put all the history books about man’s beginning here on Earth away…we haven’t a clue, but maybe those rare crystal skulls that have been found around the globe are making more sense?**(Note-this article notes they may be fakes.) This means when Columbus sailed the ocean blue, mankind had most likely done the same thing about 200,000 years before, if they weren’t riding in space ships.

3) Greece, the Euro does matter. It means more than like who wins dancing of the stars this month, but still most American’s don’t know much about the so called Grexit crisis. If Greece goes belly up on the Euro it will default on a 357.7 billion debt (in US dollars)that it owes to the International Monetary Fund. Of thirty companies listed in the Dow Jones Industrial average, twenty-seven deal heavily in the European market. If Greece tanks, we all might need some sort of diving gear if we hope to financially weather the economic storm Grexit could cause around the globe.

4) Europe’s financial crisis in 2007 was worlds worse than American’s great Depression of 1929— I hadn’t realized that as I flipped channels around that news coverage

5)America owes the International Monetary fund approximately 86% of it’s yearly Gross National Product. But not to worry, right? Greece, Singapore a few other name brand countries have the US well beat in terms of carrying a disastrous debt ratio. But the shocker to me was Japan-their debt per year is 200% of their Gross National Product at this time. I figure this may be due to Fukushimas’ Nuclear power plant melt down, so there’s another point to consider when we allow the power industry to build plants that can hose our entire future-more than just end life on the planet as we know it.

Franque23 is having fun learning, and I want those buckling up seat belts years back…..

here are links for both of my books in the Avatar Magic Series:

Book one, Avatar Magic and book two, The Code of Avatar Magic are on kindle now.



Avatar Magic, by Gerald Franquemont, is out on Kindle and it is downloadable onto most readers.)

Grandchildren are the reason we have kids. Oh, having children is nice for masochists and whatnots, but children you have to raise, grandchildren you get to praise.  I’m not saying I didn’t say a kind word or two to my kids as they grew up, but three words would be a stretch. Heck, after changing diapers for five years night and day, getting pee in the face,  risking my life in cub scout overnights, repairing girl scout camps on my birthday in the rain, hauling, storing, trying to sell and then having to buy one million boxes of girl scout cookies, flunking my kid’s seventh grade math test, blowing my fingernails off doing high school experiments again and again,  worrying all night wondering why my kid crawled out the window, who could forget paying for drivers insurance for 3 teenagers at the same time and finally, sort of, meeting their dates who I’d like to punch in the face(why wait) means my mind went blank years ago on who my kids really are, why I had them and where the rest of me might be found…

Then the Grandchildren started arriving. The skies cleared; worldwide doom and gloom seemed much further off than it had. Truth is, everything makes sense again. Things like why I let my kids live no longer keeps me up at night. Rome,  South America, even Russia seems so much further away-only yesterday plus several years I’d bought twelve one way tickets to each country. It’s true that I’ve already pulled my hair out but my grandchildren say, “Bald is beautiful, Bapa!”

And the Holidays-oh those joyous occasions. My family’s, “Don’t eat all your Halloween candy in one night” lecture has morphed into, “Eat all the candy you like dear; your parents will be picking you up soon.” Or phrases like, “How about ice cream for breakfast, lunch and dinner?” echoes off the walls of our kitchen. There’s nothing like stuffin’ a grandchild full of sugar and then watching them run in circles for an hour. Soon, I’ll put a lawn mower in front of them after the sugar overload and my work will be done here.

Just this week  our Grandchildren and us cranked out the craft box, picked out our pumpkins,  scooped out the innards, carved the faces, added a light inside, roasted the seeds with salt and had a Halloween ball of a time. Of course, we each shared our own kind of scary stories later that night.

We be happy---too much fun this year carving.
We be happy—too much fun this year carving.


This is actually this Grandson’s scary face…..


Our living room took on a new glow last night.

Now, some grandchildren are too young and they get their seasonal Holiday’s mixed up. Someone’s got Easter on her mind…..


This Grandchild, here at 3 weeks old, intends to rule the world. She’s begun this task by training her parents to service her every need, smile, squeak, fart and worse…..Crazy thing is, I wish I was there to help with that.

Okay, the truth. No one had as much fun with their own kids as I did.  I love my kids, in fact, all children, maybe that’s why I work in the children’s department in the Alachua County Library.

And so many fun times at the library-like magic binocular day!

And so many fun times at the library-like magic binocular day!

 We get to do stuff Kids would like to do. All you older folks should join us and dress up this Halloween...Make a time of it.

We get to do stuff Kids would like to do. All you older folks should join us and dress up this Halloween…Make a time of it.

Some say I’ve never truly grown up.  Me? I just don’t ever plan on getting cranky. Age is an honor.  In our house we’ve honored every single year we’ve had. “Look honey-Laura just spilled my drink! Isn’t that neat? How did she ever manage that?” We duck walked into the bathroom at night to brush our teeth; we chanted our names as we marched together around the outside of our house for no particular reason; we tickled; tricked;comforted; walked in the snow; fished; camped; stepped in puddles on purpose; did art work; read a zillion books; dressed up for church; cooked, cleaned and learned about life as a family. Simply, there’s nothing like having children, and Grandchildren ratchets the best experience life can offer into a whole new sphere of happiness.

Here’s to pumpkin faces everywhere! Remember: you could be one too-I don’t care what your so-called age.

Cheers from happyville.  A great poet once wrote that happiness is a choice.  Make the right one for your life this Halloween and always. If you don’t have children, make one smile and don’t forget to smile with them. These are the good ol’ days for every age.


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May 2020