The things they say.

Three and a half year old granddaughter singing out loudly from the back of the car: “When I grow up I’m going to be a mommy. Or a daddy. Or a monster.”


Nearly seven year old grandson on the beach at Port Elliot. He is having a wonderful time , jumping in and out of the waves with his parents, then his aunt, then his grandparents. He runs around splashing and leaping, enjoying the way the sunlight catches the plumes of water he is kicking up, the breeze in his hair and the sheer joy and exhilaration of being in the moment. Suddenly he stops thigh-deep in the water, freezes into a pose with arms spread, somewhere between a surfer’s crouch and a swooping seagull, and laughs out joyously to the sky, “I am a Man of Waves”.


Bedtime story time with both of them: three and a half year old looks at me seriously and says, “I’m going to suck my thumb and I don’t want to take it out”.

Me: OK, in that case, I’d better suck my thumb too.

I copy her – thumb in mouth and index finger alongside nose.

Me: Ugh! I’m not doing this. I don’t like it. It tastes horrible.

Her: No, it tastes nice.

Me: It tastes horrible, yuk.

Her: It tastes nice.

Nearly seven year old grandson glances up from his book and says, in a very nonchalent, superior, cool dude voice, “You’ve just got different tastes”.

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