Author: Tattooed Nana
In February I rounded the corner on another decade, and I’ll be celebrating my birthday with friends and family over the weekend. I welcome your good wishes, but no gifts, please, unless you’d like to donate to a couple of causes close to my heart (see bottom of post). In the meantime, I will be reveling in some of the gifts bestowed on me by the past six decades.
Personalized Sound Effects
That would be the squishy, crunchy noise my knees make when I go downstairs. Not up, just down. If I want sound effects going upstairs, I have to wear squeaky shoes.
A Suit of Armor
Well, actually it’s more of an impenetrable slab of human brisket that stretches from my ribs to my hips. Hit me with your best shot! I’m well padded.
Non-Stop Video Games
Some of the foggy-floaty things obstructing my vision can be surgically removed from the outside. Those inside my eyes hone my reflexes as I blink and shake my head in pursuit of a clearer view. I’m up to skill level 60 in this game.
A Hirsute Scavenger Hunt
Every month my tweezers and I go searching for the hair that has been sneaking away from my eyebrows to colonize my chin and upper lip.
Blonde, gray, what’s the diff? They’re both shiny.
A Larger Space to Dwell In
My concept of marriage has expanded and become more flexible, allowing my husband and me to express our identities as individuals and as a couple without the confines of straining to meet unrealistic expectations. Whew! I sure do enjoy the breathing room.
A Ticket to Adventure
Success is no longer doing something well, but trying something new. Failure? Not on the table. If I give my best and learn in the process, I’ve still succeeded.
A New Language
The word “son” entered my vocabulary when my beautiful daughter married the love of her life, and “grandson” was added when they presented us with the miracle of a new life.
What stirs the soul more than “Nana!” bellowed in the sweet voice of a little boy?
A Life Preserver
In three letters, G-O-D, who has blessed me, sustained me, and brought me to this happy occasion. As long as the Source of Life gives me life, I plan on celebrating and growing from all it brings. Even in the darkest heartache, I know I am never alone. If I’ve not been abandoned in the last 60 years, why should I fear those that remain?
Cheers to all of us who greet each day, each year with optimism, gratitude, and humility. Frankly, we rock this thing called life. (Still humble, just sayin’.)
And now for the modest request…
These two causes have touched my life, and every penny goes directly to good works. If you feel like giving, please consider…
MJ’s Army fights ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease). The world lost a good man when ALS took my cousin Michael Jaillet, but his memory and courage live on. The fight goes on. Help MJ’s Army find a cure and donate to research that will bring this fatal and heartbreaking disease to an end.
Cats Haven is a no-kill shelter for abandoned or injured felines in the Indianapolis area. They receive love, medical attention, and, if health permits, placement into permanent homes. This handsome one-eyed fellow, my guardian and companion, came our way because of their dedication.
Or reach out to any worthy cause that speaks to your soul.
Here’s where you’ll find crafts, DIY ideas, recipes, short cuts, and life savers for those of us who take care of little ones. If you have a great hack, please e-mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A group of women all over the age of 80 have become a pop sensation in Japan.
Why? Why not? See them in action here and enjoy!
Here’s a quick and easy (and cheap!) game I created for my grandson.
The best part is that you can take it outdoors, to the sandbox, or anywhere you need a distraction and not worry about it getting dirty, broken, or lost – because it’s so easy to replace.
All you need are miniature red cups (okay, they’re probably shot glasses), and an empty egg carton. Fill, stack, recombine…it’s a pre-puzzle, if you will.
The Crafting Chicks have all kinds of cute snack ideas that you can make with your little helper. Directions are here.
If you’re read my Facebook page or Nana Says blog, you know how much I value exposing children to the wonders of a natural environment.
This beautiful picture comes from Traditional Medicinals, and they have suggestions for bringing children closer to nature. Click here for more lovely pictures and good ideas.
The big kids may be heading back to school, but the little guys still have plenty of warm weather left.
Formulamom.com has plenty of great ideas to keep the wee ones entertained – just when you thought you’d pulled your last rabbit out of the hat. Click here to see more.
In this year’s AIDS/LifeCycle, 68-year-old Anne Stacy of Houston, Texas made the 545-mile ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles in memory of her son. Click here to read more of her inspiring story.
She is personally and professionally dedicated to helping children become their best selves – more courageous, more compassionate, and more engaged in the care of their world.
These three links are from her, and I pass them along to you for your consideration:
- if you have a girl in your life who isn’t into pink, purple, or ponies: No Gender Stereotypes
- if you want that little girl to have a healthy body image: Strong Is the New Pretty
- if you want your little ones to know that people with courage and a conscience can change the world: Children’s Books for Social Good
We will grow old in the world our children create. Let’s make it a good world for us all.