Anyone following either of my blogs knows I watch my 3 year old granddaughter every day. She and I are a team and love doing many of the same things. PAPA says I spoiled her by making her love animals so much, but I do not agree. Her dad is a hunter and watches animal programs with her, all Dora’s friends are animals as well as Diego, Kai Lan, Wonder Pets and many of the kids shows. Not sure why I get blamed!
One of the things we love to do is go for walks. Our favorite thing is to walk the 3.2 miles to where PAPA works and have lunch with him. This past Wednesday we did just that. Half way there is a laundromat with a nice clean bathroom. We usually make it that far before she has to go (ahem, good excuse anyway, usually I am getting bad by then too).
As we were leaving the laundromat there where the drive meets the road, was a roadkill. An opossum was laying there, mouth open and run over. There was no blood, just a dead opossum that had tire tracks on it, but she was fascinated. She wanted to look at it and made lots of remarks about it’s teeth and big mouth.
For the next mile and half she talked about the opossum’s situation. (Well, with the exception of the short time she asked if we could please go to a garage sale because she really really wanted to go…. another love we both have!) She asked about how it got hit and I was able to talk to her about playing in the street or crossing the street so she did not get hit. She informed me that if what happened to the opossum happened to her then her mom would be very sad.
She saw two squirrels playing in the road and told them to get out or they would end up like the opossum. More conversation about death followed and she informed me that if that happened to her mom she would be very sad.
All this week she has talked about the opossum and asking questions about it. Do they growl? Can it growl now? Do they bite? Can it bite now?
It has been a good time of learning for her and I want to use it to its fullest as she talks and asks questions. Not just about playing in the road and getting hit, but about death itself.
It has been learning for me too. Having her by herself and not with other kids has given me opportunities that many times are missed when you are a parent and dealing with everything. Daycare does not provide this learning. However, for me it is one on one with her all day. Yes, I have things I should get done, things I need to get done, but they sit. At my age they sit for some time at times as I am too tired at night to stay up late and do them. However, God has blessed me with this little girl to enjoy, work with and help understand life and Him.
Use your opportunities to the best. Encourage their questions and not push them off. Little ones learn and want to learn way more than we give them credit for at times!