Autumn Begins

The trees are proclaiming a change of season, mostly by dropping their leaves. Our house is approximately 2,600 feet above sea level, so we are noticing a slight change of green rather than pastel colors. Neighbor Logan is again catching the school bus at the stop sign, and John is involved with fall events at Tennessee train clubs.

Yesterday Logan came over to visit for a couple of hours after school. As usual, he shed his shoes at the door and later took off his socks, as well. I didn’t know that his mother told him not to watch television or play on the computer, that he should just visit with me. We had a snack, and Logan asked what board games we had. I refused to play checkers, his favorite, because it takes my every last brain cell to keep him from trouncing me. That’s as much a statement of my failure as it is his ability. Last time he wasn’t keen on Peggity, my favorite, but he settled for it. I’m still good enough that I can make him win every other time. We may have played ten games now, and he is beginning to grasp the strategy. If we continue to play, he will soon be like Tom, my childhood neighbor who beat me EVERY time 65 years ago. It’s a wonder I recovered.

Logan asked to look in grandson David’s closet. He caressed the Nerf guns but didn’t fire them. He asked to play catch with a tennis ball. We did it for a little while, but picking up all the balls I dropped made my knees protest. He streaked to the place where we keep balloons and soon had a blue one blown up.

092817 Logan blows up a balloon.jpg

Our grandsons have played balloon games with us since they could run. We batted one back and forth, developing games as we went. Logan ruled that the object was to keep the balloon off the floor. Next, he used his head instead of his hands. It was only a matter of time until he rolled on the large green exercise ball that I use as a computer chair. He jumped on it and rolled forward, head first, landing in a wiggling heap on the other side. He asked to read a book, but I didn’t know where there were any he would like. We changed venue for ballooning, going to the living room. He set my grandmother’s small chair as a net. I imagined her sitting there with a sweater pulled over her arms, and she would have laughed with delight. Logan’s forceful blows sent the balloon behind the chaise lounge I was sitting on. His bare feet pounded the hardwood floor, and he launched himself onto the back. He used the rounded back as a fulcrum to retrieve the errant balloon from the floor. He had a workout of sorts, but I had the best geriatric exercise in the world, reaching for that balloon.

092817 Behind my view of balloon venue.jpg
View behind my seat to play balloon.  Note padded back of the furniture.
092817 Logan's view where we played balloon.jpg
Logan’s view of the balloon arena.

Shawn texted, “Do you have a little boy over there? You can send him home now and thank you for having him! He loves you guys.”

I replied, “No computer and no TV!!!”

This is when I found out we were supposed to avoid electronics. Shawn said, “Wow. I am impressed. We asked him to not do that, just to spend time with you, and I wasn’t sure he would listen. I’m impressed.”

Shawn wasn’t the only one who was very impressed.

26 thoughts on “Autumn Begins

    1. I discovered I laugh more playing our silly balloon games than at any other time. We are blessed that our grandsons usually keep their phones pocketed when we are together. For Logan, computer games and watching TV are constant temptations. I’m very happy we didn’t have those battles with our children.

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    1. Logan was seemingly content to avoid the computer and TV, but I didn’t know he was supposed to be abstaining. His self-control was remarkable, because he adores both. After he left, I remembered where I stashed some tiny airplanes for him to play with. I’ll remember next time.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, I play, but I do not have the gift of teaching. I left a beginning piano book on the rack, and Logan was very interested. I worked with him twice, but I simply do not know how to get him to follow instructions. A real teacher could have thought of ten ways to lure him into the page and the notes. I was more frustrated than Logan was. I backed off and suggested to him that he just experiment with the keyboard. He has musical ability — he can carry a tune without getting off pitch. Perhaps he would have the gift of playing by ear if he had a chance to develop it. I suspect both he and I lack the patience for this endeavor. You were sharp in noticing the piano, and your suggestion was a very good one.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Anne,
    I can see you cherished your time with your adopted grandchild. I wish he could visit you every day. His parents are old school if they keep him away from electronics, which I feel is quite the right thing to do at that age.
    Do you know i once had to beg/cajole the principal of my daughter’s school to reduce the computer time for the children of her class and instead give them some time each day to develop their handwriting ? Seems like having a beautiful script or spellings is no longer ” cool”.
    You can have a list of ” !0 Things to do when Logan visits” and stick it on your refrigerator. And if you have done it before or he has been bored, remove it and put another in.
    Are fall days, soupy days for you too ?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good suggestions, Susie. If Logan came here regularly, I think I’d keep books from the library here. I did it once, and he didn’t like the books I had chosen. We should ask to take him to the library to pick out things himself.

      It hasn’t been cool enough that we’ve wanted soup. We have some in the pantry, waiting.


  2. It doesn’t surprise me how kids who have not been babysat by electronics can find other things entertaining. Even as adults, we don’t realize how addicted we are to them until the lights go out. A few years back after a tornado in Alabama, we lost power for a few days and we had the best time playing board games by candlelight. And, the quiet. As soon as the power came on there was a whir throughout the house that is constant but that we don’t notice until we don’t have it and then we do. You are a wonderful influence for that child. You are lucky and blessed to have one another.


    1. Thank heavens we never lost power because of a tornado! I’m scared silly of those things. We were without for eight days, once for a hurricane and once for a blizzard. Like you, we weathered them nicely. We enjoy Logan, and his parents say he loves coming over.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Lovely blog, lovely house, lovely boy. I’ve never played Peggarty – is it fun? Balloons are such a great, versatile thing to have as a back-up aren’t they? And they can be easily stored. Glad the two of you had a good time. Xx


    1. The game is played with pegs on a square board. First player to get five pegs in a row wins. The rows can be horizontal, vertical, or diagonal. The game is no longer produced, but daughter Lise bought me a used one. We’ve kept a supply of balloons in our house for about 15 years. I just confirmed that, finding a photo taken in April 2002 Grandson Nathaniel is holding an orange balloon when he was two years old. He is now 6’5″ tall.


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