Tag Archives: Human Interest

Amusing Monday: Stories of grandchildren and more

During the past year, many of us have become new grandparents or added to our assembly of grandchildren. In our community of mobile families on the Kitsap Peninsula, local children don’t always get to know their grandparents as well as we would like. But it’s my hope that parents and grandparents can try to foster that special relationship in the new year.

I think it’s great when an older friend of the family steps up to play the role of grandparent, helping a young family in various ways. We also have new technology that can connect grandparents to their grandchildren through video conferences.

Children can be a source of joy and amusement for parents and grandparents alike, and sharing our stories can be part of the amusement.

To connect these thoughts to today’s “Amusing Monday” feature, I’d like to reprieve some stories that first appeared in this blog in November of 2008. As I did then, I’m following those stories with some definitions of love from young children. Both lists were found on the Internet, but I was unable to identify the original sources.

When you’re done reading about grandchildren and love, you may enjoy some more of these kinds of amusing tidbits from previous “Amusing Mondays”:

The odd things that people say, Sept. 20, 2010

Science eludes young students, April 23, 2012

The amusement of grandchildren

My grandson called the other day to wish me a Happy Birthday. He asked me how old I was, and I told him, “62.” He was quiet for a moment, and then he asked, “Did you start at 1?”

After putting her grandchildren to bed, a grandmother changed into old slacks and a droopy blouse and proceeded to wash her hair. As she heard the children getting more and more rambunctious, her patience grew thin. At last she threw a towel around her head and stormed into their room, putting them back to bed with stern warnings. As she left the room, she heard the three-year-old say with a trembling voice, “Who was THAT?”

A grandmother was telling her granddaughter what her own childhood was like: “We used to skate outside on a pond. I had a swing made from a tire; it hung from a tree in our front yard. We rode our pony. We picked wild raspberries in the woods.” The little girl was wide-eyed, taking this in. At last she said, “I sure wish I’d gotten to know you sooner!”

A little girl was diligently pounding away on her grandfather’s word processor. She told him she was writing a story. “What’s it about?” he asked. “I don’t know,” she replied. “I can’t read.”

I didn’t know if my granddaughter had learned her colors yet, so I decided to test her. I would point out something and ask what color it was. She would tell me, and always she was correct. But it was fun for me, so I continued. At last she headed for the door, saying sagely, “Grandma, I think you should try to figure out some of these yourself!”

Our five-year-old grandson couldn’t wait to tell his grandfather about the movie we had watched on television: “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.” The scenes with the submarine and the giant octopus had kept him wide-eyed. In the middle of the telling, my husband interrupted. “Mark, what caused the submarine to sink?” With a look of incredulity, Mark replied, “Grandpa, it was the 20,000 leaks!”

When my grandson Billy and I entered our vacation cabin, we kept the lights off until we were inside to keep from attracting pesky insects. Still, a few fireflies followed us in. Noticing them before I did, Billy whispered, “It’s no use, Grandpa. The mosquitoes are coming after us with flashlights.”

Definitions of love

“A group of professional people posed this question to a group of 4 to 8 year olds, “What does love mean?” The answers they got were broader and deeper than anyone could have imagined. See what you think:”

“When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn’t bend over and paint her toenails anymore. So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That’s love.”
Rebecca – age 8

“When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different. You just know that your name is safe in their mouth.”
Billy – age 4

“Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other.”
Karl – age 5

“Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your French fries without making them give you any of theirs.”
Chrissy – age 6

“Love is what makes you smile when you’re tired.”
Terri – age 4

“Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK.”
Danny – age 7

“Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more. My Mommy and Daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss.”
Emily – age 8

“Love is what’s in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen.”
Bobby – age 7

“If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who you hate.”
Nikka – age 6

“Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday.”
Noelle – age 7

“Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they know each other so well.”
Tommy – age 6

“During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn’t scared anymore.”
Cindy – age 8

“My mommy loves me more than anybody. You don’t see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.”
Clare – age 6

“Love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken.”
Elaine – age 5

“Love is when Mommy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford.”
Chris – age 7

“Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day.”
Mary Ann – age 4

“I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones.”
Lauren – age 4

“When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you.”
Karen – age 7

“Love is when Mommy sees Daddy on the toilet and she doesn’t think it’s gross.”
Mark – age 6

“You really shouldn’t say ‘I love you’ unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.”
Jessica – age 8

Watch the crazy orca … but ‘hold onto the boat!’

I’m not sure who’s having more fun in the video below — the killer whale or the man and his son who were treated to a close swim-by. According to accompanying notes, the video was shot over the weekend at the southeast side of Vashon Island.

Susan Berta of Orca Network tells me that the whales shown in the video are probably the three seal-eating transients that have been spotted around Puget Sound lately, though they could be another group.

These whales certainly were not in their stealthy hunting mode, so I was thinking that maybe they had a little time to play around and were checking out the two people in the floating craft.

Susan concurred: “I think the whales are often playing with us, checking us out, and just having fun.”

By swimming upside down, they can get a better look at the boat and its occupants.

Jeanne Hyde in her “Whale of a Purpose” blog talks about a group of transients swimming backwards. Could be the same silly whales caught on this video.

Amusing Monday: Quotes to make you think

This week I’d like to share 20 quotes about humans and their relationship to the environment. Some of these quotes are odd; some are witty; and some border on the profound. But I like them because they cause me to think.

Thanks goes to the Quote Garden for compiling a huge list of “environmental quotes” from which these were taken.

1. “The command ‘Be fruitful and multiply’ was promulgated, according to our authorities, when the population of the world consisted of two people.” — William Ralph Inge, More Lay Thoughts of a Dean, 1931

2. “Time and space – time to be alone, space to move about – these may well become the great scarcities of tomorrow.” — Edwin Way Teale, Autumn Across America, 1956

3. “Because we don’t think about future generations, they will never forget us.” — Henrik Tikkanen

4. “The rose has thorns only for those who would gather it.” — Chinese Proverb

5. “For the first time in the history of the world, every human being is now subjected to contact with dangerous chemicals, from the moment of conception until death.” — Rachel Carson, Silent Spring, 1962

6. “Give a man a fish, and he can eat for a day. But teach a man how to fish, and he’ll be dead of mercury poisoning inside of three years.” — Charles Haas

7. I conceive that the land belongs to a vast family of which many are dead, few are living, and countless numbers are still unborn.” — Author Unknown

8. “We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.” — Native American Proverb

9. “The struggle to save the global environment is in one way much more difficult than the struggle to vanquish Hitler, for this time the war is with ourselves. We are the enemy, just as we have only ourselves as allies.” — Al Gore

10. “Till now man has been up against Nature; from now on he will be up against his own nature.” — Dennis Gabor, Inventing the Future, 1964

11. “We never know the worth of water till the well is dry.” — Thomas Fuller, Gnomologia, 1732

12. “Man is a complex being: He makes deserts bloom – and lakes die.” — Gil Stern

13. “Suburbia is where the developer bulldozes out the trees, then names the streets after them.” — Bill Vaughn

14. “The activist is not the man who says the river is dirty. The activist is the man who cleans up the river.” — Ross Perot

15. “Economic advance is not the same thing as human progress.” — John Clapham, A Concise Economic History of Britain, 1957

16. “We say we love flowers, yet we pluck them. We say we love trees, yet we cut them down. And people still wonder why some are afraid when told they are loved.” — Author Unknown

17. “Why do people give each other flowers? To celebrate various important occasions, they’re killing living creatures? Why restrict it to plants? ‘Sweetheart, let’s make up. Have this deceased squirrel.'” — The Washington Post

18. Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect. — Chief Seattle, 1855

19. “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” — John Muir

20. “We could have saved the Earth but we were too damned cheap.” — Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

Amusing Monday: Boneheads teach ecology

A whole family of Boneheads resides in a place where water and the interconnections of life are explained to those who don’t get the picture.

Planet Bonehead is inhabited by cartoon characters who interact with the real world, as you can see in the music video at right. Music is a key part of Planet Bonehead.

The project was created by graphics designer Bob Donahue and his longtime friend Dan Roeper. Roeper’s sister, Patti Romano, became a partner, providing the essential educational elements.

Planet Bonehead videos can be viewed online or purchased as DVDs for use in the classroom or other educational settings. If this catches your interest, you can meet each of the Boneheads on a video called “Meet the Boneheads #1 — Global Warming & the Boneheads.”

For the complete set of videos, check out the Planet Bonehead channel on YouTube or on the Planet Bonehead website.

Amusing Monday: Animals Save the Planet

I have to admit a certain fondness for the clay animated creatures that have come to life thanks to Aardman Animations, which has fostered a bunch of creative animations, including Wallace & Gromit.

Since this is the week of Earth Day, I thought I would present the series of Earth-friendly tips offered by some strange but lovable animals. The short videos were produced for Animal Planet in the UK, and I’m not sure if they were shown in the U.S.

Aardman Animations, started by Peter Lord and David Sproxton, has an interesting history. Starting out with simple projects in 1975, the animations grew more sophisticated through the years. You may remember their first full-length movie, “Chicken Run,” which won numerous awards.
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