Archives for April 2006

Tidying Up

Hannah has started to take great interest in putting things “away.”  A couple of days ago I took advantage of this, by enlisting her help in unloading the dishwasher.  She put the pot lids in the drawer with great gusto.

The problem with all of this tidying up, though, is that Hannah doesn’t share our adult concept of what things belong where.  I lost the remote, and found it in the magazine rack.  I’m doing the laundry, and I find a bunch of toys in with the dirty clothes.  Clearly, someone put them there, in an effort to organize her world.  And, quite frankly, the fact that I don’t see the logic behind the placement is my own darned fault. 😉

Practice Makes Perfect

Yesterday was so lovely and sunny, that we couldn’t pass up the chance to take Hannah over to the park to play.  As usual, she really enjoyed the swing, and riding on the little elephant bouncy thing.  However, her favourite part of the outing was walking around on the bark mulch.

The ground at the park is somewhat uneven, and the bark mulch makes it even trickier.  At first, Hannah could barely take one or two steps before she fell.  After 10 minutes of relentlessly walking this way and that, though, she was quite good.  She could change direction, stop and start, and handle the slight changes in level.  It’s pretty amazing to watch how quickly she picks up new skills at this point.

Easter Update

I’ve been negligent in letting you all know about Hannah’s 2nd Easter.  For the most part, things were good.  Hannah enjoyed the colourful Easter eggs, and visiting with family.  She did not like the chocolate egg that we let her taste.  And, for the most part, the car rides weren’t too horrible. I call that a success!

Jim MacMichael, 1921-2006

Noni and Papa

On Saturday Night, my grandfather Jim MacMichael passed away. Jim was my grandfather on my mother’s side. Jim was born on June 18, 1921 in Gays River, Nova Scotia. In fact, he was my step-grandfather, but as my grandmother and him were married before I was born, Jim was always my “Papa”.

My first memories of him were at their farm on Gladwin Road. At a very tender age I immediately thought he was cool because he had a farm and a tractor, and nothing is cooler when you’re young than a man with a tractor. He taught me how to drive that thing up and down the long driveway, to the berry field and back. He was always working on something on the farm, but he’d always take the time to show us kids what he was up to.

In the barn, he had a poster of a man flushing himself down the toilet with the caption, “Goodbye Cruel World”. I always thought that poster was funny, until one day I came to the barn and the poster was gone. Papa said that he’d finally done it, and flushed himself. I was dumbstruck. The barn was a place where real magic happened for me, and Papa made those memories that last a lifetime.

We are not often aware of the impact we have on the life of another. I’ve been reflecting on how his love and example have affected my life. Papa was the first guy I know to have an office in his house, and on his office wall was a map of the world. To this day, I still have a map of the world on my office wall. Papa was the first guy I knew that had a satellite dish, and he would show me how he could get television signals from all over the world. This was endlessly fascinating for me. The day he died I was working on Hockey Night in Canada. Little did he know that the kid he was teaching how to use his satellite would end up on arguably the biggest show in the country. Now that I have a child of my own, I look forward to her having those experiences with our friends and family.

I last saw him on Super Bowl Sunday when my Dad and I went out for a visit. His health was failing, but he was in great spirits. We talked about the War, the bombing missions he flew over Germany as a kid of barely 20. It was the first time we really talked about it, about being that young and scared to death. He asked about his great-grandchild Hannah, excited to hear how she was growing and developing. We both knew it was going to be one of the last times we saw each other. He told me about the past, and I told him about the future. What he had done in his life paved the way for my life, and the lives of my children. And that by any measure, is a life well led.

Goodbye Papa.

Happy Birthday Grannie!

Happy Birthday Nan!

 

What Hannah taught me today

Sometimes I’m not sure who is learning more, Hannah or Amber and I. Today Hannah taught me a very important lesson. Hannah has been walking in fits and spurts, mostly just trying it out and still using crawling as her main mode of transportation. Today, Hannah decided that today was the day she was really going to walk. She would get up, walk a few steps, fall down, and try again. Pretty soon she was laughing as she was falling around the room.

For the most part, when adults try something and fail, we tend to get discourged and do everything to avoid putting ourselves in that situation again. But as Hannah fell time and again, she was laughing, because she knew that every time she failed, she was getting better. Hannah knows that the important thing isn’t that you fall down, it’s that you continue to get up.

UPDATE: Video should work now for everyone, let me know if you can’t play it.

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