How To Keep A Toddler Busy (First of a Series)


                                   Image Copyright Being Aunt Debbie


My grandson, D.M. is almost 2 years old now. I can’t believe how he’s grown! He’s been in his terrible twos for quite awhile. His attention span is next to nothing. His mind must be racing with all the thoughts of what he can get into next. He should be exhausted by the end of the day. I know I am, just from trying to keep up with him all day! It’s hard to keep him occupied. Sometimes, he finds something interesting to do on his own…..

I was peeling potatoes one day and he thought he would help me. He pulled a chair up to my utility cart, retrieved a potato from the potato bin, opened the silverware drawer and pulled out a spoon. Then he got up on the chair. Away he went….he worked at that potato for several minutes, then gave up. I can imagine how that potato would’ve looked if he had stayed interested long enough!

Random Thoughts….

Tonight I woke up from a short nap, (Yeah, I’m old and I need a nap on occasion) and something made me think of the phrase “shit on a stick.” There are many meanings to that phrase and I’m going to ignore all of them but one because quite frankly most of them are disgusting. I’m thinking of corn dogs and caramel apples….foods you eat on a stick or in my house “shit on a stick.”

I’m not sure why or how the conversation even started because I just woke up, but I got to thinking about all the fun foods you can eat on a stick; foods served on a stick that must have originated with fairs and carnivals. It made eating food easier so you can walk and talk and have all that fun…..well, the fun we had when we were kids. I’m too tired for that kind of fun now but I still like “shit on a stick”.

There are more foods on a stick than I had initially thought. There are the best-known foods like caramel apples, corn dogs, cotton candy, suckers, popsicles, ice cream bars, the Chinese favorite chicken on a stick, and backyard favorites, kabobs, and corn on the cob. I did a quick Google Search and found several others, many of which I have never heard of and don’t even know what they are. I found a few familiar foods that sounded like they might be good….not good for you, but good. There’s meatballs, pretzels, frozen & chocolate-dipped bananas, sausages, frozen & chocolate-dipped Hostess Twinkies, deep-fried Hostess Ho Ho’s, pork chops, frozen candy bars and rice crispy treats.

It’s fun to eat “shit on a stick” isn’t it?

Oh, I almost forgot to mention one of my favorites…. Jose Jalapeño on a stick. See him in action below with Jeff Dunham and Peanut:

Beware The Snapping Turtle

Wow.  My son, C.F. decided to go for a walk this evening. He found a baby snapping turtle. He brought it home and we ooed and awed at its tiny cuteness. Everyone except for D.M. He was fine until C.F. put it on the floor and the tiny little thing took off like the road runner.  We had to put him in a plastic bucket to get a picture because he was moving so fast! I was amazed at the fact that it was as tiny as a peppermint candy. I took a few pictures of “Tiny” and then C.F. returned him from whence he came….

Image Copyright Being Aunt Debbie

I remember someone telling me that snapping turtles jump and being a logical thinker and all, I didn’t believe it. However, I did some research and many people claim that they do, in fact, jump. I found a video on YouTube to share. They do jump, I suppose. Although it’s a bit more like a “push off” than anything else and I suppose if the dang thing is big enough, it could quite easily propel itself forward a great distance, especially if it’s pissed off. Oh, and word of warning: The bigger ones CAN take your finger off so proceed with caution when dealing with snapping turtles!

Watch out for ‘Jumping’ Snapping Turtles! LOL.

Random Memory….

When I was a kid, it was a simpler time. We didn’t have VCRs, DVD players, CDs or DVDs. We didn’t have cell phones; just the old fashioned kind with a cord. We didn’t have satellite dishes, satellite radio or flat screen TVs. We had a tube-bearing color TV with a few basic channels and if we were lucky our parents got cable. We didn’t have microwaves or computers. We didn’t have MP3 Players; just radios & record players that played LPs & 45s. We didn’t have digital cameras; just the kind with a roll of film that had to be developed at the store. If we didn’t have a flash bulb we’d have to make sure our pictures were taken outside. I could go on….but I won’t because all of you old enough to remember these times knows exactly what I mean by ‘simpler times.’

In this ‘simpler time’ we had to find something constructive to do or our parents would make us clean our rooms or clean out the garage. My sisters and I chose to keep busy outside riding our bikes or walking around the block over and over again. (This was back when it was safe to walk around the block without an adult.) We had a pool to play in and a swing set in our back yard. We spent countless hours playing house, school or doctor, or tormenting our neighbor.

Our neighbors were very nice people.  They were a couple about the age of my parents, with 3 kids. The 2 youngest girls were around my sisters’ ages and the oldest boy was my age. I remember when my parents told us we were moving next door to them. I was horrified! I couldn’t imagine living next door to Michael Victor and what would my classmates thinkwhat would they say? Oh, how I prayed no one would find out!

We always pretended to hate each other, in school and at home, but we always had fun. We had water balloon fights and my sisters, his sisters and I chased Michael all over the neighborhood and he chased us too. We spent a lot of time conspiring against him & trying to sneak up behind him with a big ol’ water balloon. Sometimes, we caught him by surprise but usually he was one step ahead of us! He always got even! We had tons of fun – I guess I can’t speak for Michael, but I remember those summers most fondly and I always wonder where Michael went to and what he’s doing these days.

I recently found one of his sisters on Facebook so I’m hoping contact with Michael will eventually follow.

Oh, how I wish for simpler times again… Those were the days……

Toxicity Part Two

As if we don’t have enough environmental toxicity to deal with, we always have a few toxic people in our lives that need to be “cut loose.” You know who I’m talking about. A friend, a friend of a friend, an obnoxious neighbor, it could even be a relative – those people who drag you down, drain you of energy or put you, a loved one or your dreams down as if no one else’s feelings matter. There always seems to be someone who has something negative to say or can’t help but stir up trouble; the behind-your-back-talker, the nay-sayer, the one you just can’t quite trust. They aren’t happy so they don’t want you to be happy either. I don’t need them. You don’t need them. Cut them loose. Declutter. Clean out your closet, so to speak.

I’m all for giving people a second chance, possibly a third but there comes a time when enough is enough. They can’t hurt you if you let them go. If you don’t mean enough to them, for them to be loyal and kind to you then let them go. Declutter. Remove the toxic people from your life.