Whatchamacallit? Thingamajig? and Snicklefritz?

final coverkindlehalfcoverI get so busy promoting my Fuchsia Minnesota and Brilliant Minnesota Series books that I have neglected my children’s series that I self-published. There is a little bit of a story behind these books. Whatchamacallit Thingamajig was actually the first book I wrote with my grandchildren when they were younger. I wanted to leave them something to remember me by, and what better than a mystery involving them and giving them a little glimpse into Grandma’s life when she was young.

Although I call it a children’s book it also is a great short book for adults to remember their youth, and promote showing their grandchildren who they were before the wrinkles.

As an adult and a grandmother we strive to be good role models for our grandchildren. We are not perfect and we had a life before children and grandchildren. We had fun, we made mistakes, and they all shaped us into who we are today. Much of the time we only share that which we feel will make us look good in our grandchildren’s eyes. We don’t share the fact that we almost burned down the barn because we were playing with matches in the hayloft. I had simple activities in my youth that children in this era don’t have. I also wanted to share that with my grandchildren.

I wanted to remind our adult self to keep the child inside of  us and let it out once in  awhile so life doesn’t get too heavy for us. Are these my best written books, absolutely not. They were my first, but they are meaningful to me because the kids played out the mystery acting out the pictures giving me feedback and ideas throughout the way.

Read them if you like, give them as a gift or don’t. I wanted you to know they are out there, they were written with heart and I am proud of them and my grandchildren. They are available in both Kindle and paperback.  And starting on September 2, they are both .99 as a Kindle download.

Maggie interviewr

 

 

 

My Heart is With My Granddaughter!


I love my grandchildren. This year I decided on each of their birthdays I will post a special blog about them. I know they don’t like to be in the spotlight but I want them to know how special they are to me.

Today is my Granddaughter’s  13th Birthday. I remember her tiny beginnings. She was our first grandchild and I jumped up and down with screams when I knew I was going to be a Grandmother and then panic set in. What did I know about being a Grandmother?

I remember when we got the call  she was here. I was overwhelmed by joy and love for a tiny being I hadn’t yet met.  A few days after her birth we were able to travel and meet her. She was the cutest, sweetest little angel I had ever seen. The first few days were a little challenging. There was a problem with milk and so she was a little temperamental and was awake and crying, making her displeasure known. Four of us grandparents camped in a tiny house along with her parents and took turns, holding her, singing to her, rocking her and loving her. She could do no wrong in our eyes. And there was another blessing during the time and it was the blessing of four grandparents forming a friendship that continues today. It seems like yesterday.

As she grew we rejoiced over every little accomplishment she made, her first words, her first steps and the first time she could say Grandma and Grandpa. Her twinkling eyes and cheerful spirits always make our days brighter.

I wish children could remember their early years and all the love they received from the special people in their lives and the special moments that were shared. They will only live on by the stories we tell, planting in their hearts memories that last forever.

My granddaughter is lucky because she has two very special parents who raised her and nurtured her into the beautiful young lady she has become. I am so proud of them and of her. She used to wake up in the morning and always remark, “It’s going to be a beautiful day.” My wish for her is that she can do that every day of her life no matter how old she becomes.

So Happy Birthday Ms Teenager. I wish you the joys of growth, the strength to get through the hills and valleys that accompany the teenage years and the wisdom to know the choices you are making for yourself are right for you. But most of all I want you to know you are so loved and you always will be.

Grandma Julie

 

When Children Speak, We May Want To Listen

Family Funecha

Family Funecha (Photo credit: RG&B)

Column: Something about Nothing, by Julie Seedorf -Column from Albert Lea Tribune and The Courier Sentinel week of  October7, 2013

The phrase, “out of the mouths of babes,” was resonating in my mind one recent evening as I was kid sitting with my grandkids. It means a young and inexperienced person can be remarkably wise. I decided that maybe we, as adults, need to listen to those babes.

Along with that I found that my grandchildren had some wise and remarkable people in their lives that are shaping their young inexperience into helping them become wise and caring individuals.

I know their parents work with them on being compassionate, kind, polite and accepting people but many of their waking hours are spent in day care, at school and yes, even on the bus. They come in contact with other adults that help to shape their lives.

My daughter in a sermon recently said “My mother taught me not to hate or to ever use the word hate.” I didn’t remember that but I think I can honestly say that I do not hate anyone. I may not like everyone or agree with everyone but hate to me is a very strong word that I do not want to have any power or place in my life. I hope I help shape positivity in my grandchildren’s lives.

That leads me back to the conversation with my grandchildren. My granddaughter asked me what year I was born, what year my mother was born and asked what color skin my mother and dad and grandparents had.

I wasn’t sure where this question was coming from so I had to ask. My granddaughter told me they were studying diversity in their class. She also told me that they were studying the history of the times when my grandparents and parents lived in the United States.

It made her sad to hear about the problems we have had with diversity in our country. We talked about hate and her feelings. My granddaughter sees the differences but they do not matter to her. She sees beyond the skin and looks into the heart of people. She has friends of many different nationalities. I saw that at a recent birthday party for my grandson. He too has friends of many different backgrounds.

I learned so much listening to her. She is learning to care about people who are different than her from her parents and from her teachers.

The next conversation happened when I jokingly said to my grandson “You’re a snicklefritz.”

Now I think of that term is a term of affection. I was surprised to find out from the Urban Dictionary that this was also a term for a certain kind of marijuana. Anyway, when I called him a snicklefritz, meaning that affectionately, he said to me, “No, I’m a gentleman.” He was very serious, and seriousness is not his usual demeanor.

I, being surprised, asked him what a gentleman is. He said, “Someone who treats girls and others with respect.” He is 6 years old and that threw me for a loop. I asked where he learned that and he said, “My bus driver.” Again I was thrown for a loop.

My grandson continued on, “We have to take turns letting others on the bus and we need to show respect for the girls. That means no hitting, and sometimes letting them go ahead of us. We don’t yell at them.”

My granddaughter who is 9 chimed in, “Yes, he is teaching us how to be respectful of others on the bus. We have drills on the proper way to get on a bus.” Then my grandson continued to inform me that his friend celebrated his birthday on the bus yesterday. The bus driver has a Happy Birthday sign when it is someone’s birthday and they sing “Happy Birthday.”

My grandchildren’s bus drive is making a positive influence on my grandchildren’s lives.

When I mentioned the phrase “out of the mouths of babes,” it is because it was an eye opening experience as to how each person that enters and interacts with my grandchildren makes an impact on their lives, positive or negative. To these inexperienced babes, that is the way the world is supposed to be.

Those young, inexperienced of the world people, can have their lives shaped any direction. They are not born to hate, they are not born to lie, cheat, steal, curse and hurt their neighbor. We, teach them that when we interact with them. We can’t shield our children from everything but we can teach them how to react to situations that will change who they are negatively.

What do we mirror ourselves to the children we meet in our homes, in our jobs, in our communities?

I’ll leave that answer to you, for you, to decide what you want to mirror to the children in your lives.