11 May – The Chuck

I hope this writing finds all of you doing well. James still running marathons, Jim finally moving around with a walker. 🙂

Bob Goss graduated with two advanced degrees in Law. Good job, Bob.

I’ve probably got a dozen things hanging on my agenda that I should be gabbing and worrying about, but I’ll choose not to share those for now. I’d rather keep it light hearted this month, but don’t let that sway you from sharing you stories.

I joined a writers group in LA last month. Each month we have a writing assignment, for this month it was humor. Most of you know that I’m not much at humor …

… so I just did the best I could. Here’s my humor piece, I hope it brightens your day:

The Way of The Two-Year Old

Somewhere between high school and going back to work after retiring from the Air Force, Saturdays became critical. IÂ’m not sure when the transformation began or when it finished, but I do know that if I didnÂ’t have Saturdays for my yard work, to prepare the lesson for my menÂ’s Bible study, and to type a few lines to satisfy my muse … I would live in a jungle, surrounded by heathens, and I would most certainly go hopelessly insane.

I try to learn something new ever Saturday.

Occasionally, Cindy, my wife, and I get the added pleasure of caring for Malachi and Asher, our twin grandsons. It is usually when they are too sick to stay in the day-care center while our daughter works. I believe the nursery is a breeding ground for super-bugs. I suggested a while back that the Department of DefenseÂ’s Biological Weapons Division visit my grandsonsÂ’ day-care to collect those superbugs and use them against the global terrorists. They would surrender in weeks, and weÂ’d be done with the war.

Drippy noses and hacking coughs aside, I love my grandsons. They were born in Arizona in October of 2005, shortly before my daughterÂ’s marriage crumbled into dust. Now they live on the other side of Shreveport, so Cindy and I get to see them fairly often.

After they moved here, we transformed our backyard into a playground. There is a redwood swing-set with a spiraling sliding-board, complete with ladders, a sandbox at the base, and a small fort on the second floor. We also have a grey, plastic castle with a blue door, a secret passage behind the fireplace, and a collection of plastic swords and baseballs in the tower. Our patio is populated with two of those kiddie-cars designed to be powered with busy little feet, a kitchen set filled with pots, pans, and dishes, three small push mowers that make different sounds as they move along, and a smorgasbord of balls, blocks, and brightly colored things. Yeah, they like coming to our place. It must be because they love us.

I think they would love us even if Cindy didnÂ’t bake such great cookies. There is something about watching a 2 year-old eating a cookie large enough to hide most of his face that makes a grandparent happy. Smokey, our dog, appreciates the boys too. He gets excited when the boys get cookies, because he has learned the way of the two-year old. They will eventually grow tired of the cookie, or they will drop large pieces of it as they push a toy mower or drive their little car around the patio. And it is nearly impossible to climb a spiral slide and to maintain a good hold on fresh-baked cookies. When the inevitable happens, Smokey is there to pick up after them. He must love those boys.

This past Saturday, Smokey was a bit over-zealous in guarding the boysÂ’ cookies. I had to confine Smokey to our sun-porch before I procured replacement cookies for the boys. Asher surveyed the yard from the lofty fort, while Malachi was below in the sandbox. I gave them each a fresh cookie and sat down in an Adirondack chair, hoping the sweet treats would keep their attention long enough for me to finish reviewing my lesson plan for Sunday.

Malachi sat in the shaded sandbox holding his new cookie in his right hand. He carefully inspected the raisins in the sweet, oatmeal disc. I imagined that he was savoring the moment. I smiled, watching with great anticipation for the impending big bite. Then, as if he was pretending he was a giant excavator, he bent over a took a big bite of sand. Totally unexpected.

This Saturday I learned that itÂ’s nearly impossible to get all the sand out of a two-year oldÂ’s mouth, especially when he wants to keep it there.

I may never understand two-year olds. — Charles Sutherland

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