I know some of my readers follow stories about my four-year-old grandson, Prince William. Here’s the latest.

He came for a visit yesterday. Had not seen him since Christmas Day, because he had been on vacation, or at least he described it as a vacation. When I asked him to name the vacations he had been on, he rattled off, Disney World, plus a Cruise to the Bahamas, a week at Hilton Head, trip to New York, and his latest three day trip to Chattanooga area.

He has such a phenomenal memory, plus an uncanny manner of describing his experiences. He loves trains, and described trains in Chattanooga turned into hotel rooms, where one could sleep on a train. Then visited the Tennesee aquarium, and he’s always impressed by fish and sharks.

Before leaving on the trip, took his pet fish, Captain Hook Number Two, to my daughter’s house until he returned. This is Captain Hook number two because his first pet, Captain Hook number one, expired.

When I told him he was the only person I knew, who had been on five vacations and only four years old, he just grinned and continued describing how they went on top of a mountain and could see five States. Asked me if I had ever seen five states at once. I said, “Yes, the last time I was in Tennessee.”

He was in such a happy mood, coming in carrying a large bag with a pirate ship and the dozens of moving parts and accessories he set up on my dining table and wanted me to play pirates with him.

I asked him about snowboarding, and apparently, no snow to snowboard in Chattanooga.

After a short period of stories about his latest trip and playing pirates, he wanted to play all his familiar games, chess, table tennis, tic-tac-toe, doodley squat and drawing pictures.

After lunch of his favorite, porridge, sliced tomatoes, and chocolate milk, wanted to go in back yard and hit golf balls. I said no, no, too cold. When he came back with his favorite argument, telling me I could put on a coat, hat, gloves and scarf, I still said, too cold for me.

Despite all the store-bought toys he received for Christmas, he still gathered up several empty boxes, taped them together across my living room, filled them with various items, and pretended he was going on a trip with his Dad to the dumpster. Then took a long piece of wood, propped between two chairs and pretended to make a bridge for his little cars.

Interesting for me to observe all the store-bought toys, in no way, shape, form nor fashion, stifled his enthusiam to be creative, coming up with ideas of rigging together items like empty boxes, boards and chairs, to make something to play with. I absolutely love watching a small child coming up with creative ideas, out of the blue, to enjoy and get excited over.

Seems to me the more I join in and participate with whatever idea he comes up with, the more new ideas he has to express himself. I emote over any expression of new ideas he comes up with. Wondering if I’m playing with an Edison or an Einstein.

But who knows what the future holds for any four-year-old today? What I do know is if we are privileged to be a part of their growing up years, we can play a role in encouraging their development of a love of learning. So long as they are exposed to a variety of things, like music, art, technology, building, farming, sports, travel, history, and family love and attention, they will grow up to be happy productive individuals.

I would encourage anyone, particularly those in the Senior category, to find time to spend time with a child this coming new year. Your life will be enriched by the experience.



EMAIL: annecleveland@bellsouth.net

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