Wednesday, July 17, 2019

The Kidlet Goes Rock Climbing

When I was a kid, we climbed trees. That was old school. Now days, kids climb mountains!
This is our 4 year old granddaughter learning to mountain climb.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Letting Your Inner Name Come Out

Photo from Amino Apps
If you lived through the 80's and 90's, you probably have an alias name. Most likely your name came from one of those magazine quizzes where you answer a few questions and your "true self" was exposed. My 'true self name' was Trixie. Undoubtedly this is a label most female astronauts go by. Or porn stars.

At our water aerobics class we were exercising in the swimming pool to the music, pretending to be skipping ropes or skiing down moguls, when we shared these alternative names that probably came from a Cosmo quiz. There was a "Misty", a "Sparkle" and a 'Double D". We concluded that with these names we could easily start a rock band. Or be in a movie. None of us even mentioned the possibility of going to SpaceX and becoming an astronaut. Hmmm.

"Double-D" then started to improve a bit, creating an off-the-cuff storyline for a blockbuster movie (aka porn. Or maybe it was a comedy?). Since we were clad in our water aerobic bathing suits and sweating to the oldies, it became obvious our destiny may be in film. A very low budget movie.

The water aerobics class then ended and we pulled ourselves out of the water, morphing back to our former identify - old retired broads with waving arm flaps. But just for a few moments, we had let that hidden true identity name come out and breathe. Luckily we put those names back in their box and locked them up. The world returned to normal. Thank God.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Pretend Play Helps Work Out Responses and Feelings

My little 4 year old granddaughter is a rather picky eater. She often tells me "NO" when I ask her to eat the different foods on her plate. So I found it rather surprising to see how she responded when she was the person preparing and serving a meal during our pretend play.

We were playing "meal preparation and cooking" using the wooden Melissa and Doug pizza kit. After a few hundred times of having her make and serve pizza, I told her I was full and didn't want any more pizza.

She responded back and said, "You HAVE to eat this!" and repeated this demand over and over again. This made me chuckle, and I responded back, "Why do I have to eat this pizza but you don't have to eat your lunch? If you can say 'no' to what you eat for lunch, I can say 'no' to pizza."

She then went quiet. She got up and left the room. She no longer wanted to play"pizza party".

I think I hit a nerve. Pretend play can do that. It can sometimes help kids work out their thoughts and actions in a safe environment. Other times, it is just a way to show that Grandma can't follow the rules.

Sunday, July 7, 2019

New Water Exercise Program in Bay Area

Exercising in water can be rather magical. Once you are in the water, your joints start working effortlessly and without pain. It is no wonder water aerobics, swimming, and other water exercises are what doctors recommend.

There is a new water exercise program popping up all over the Bay area of CA. It is called "TriFit". This is where different types of exercise equipment are immersed in the water, and you use the gear like you would on land, but in the water. For example, our TriFit program includes an exercise bike, trampoline, and weights that are immersed in the water. You then exercise at one station for a certain amount of time (or repetitions) and then move on to the next equipment station.
NuWave's TriFit Exercise Program
Exercise Bike in the Pool

NuWave, based in Mountain View, CA, provides this program to many pools throughout the Bay Area.  If you are looking for a more intense workout than regular water aerobics, this new water exercise program may fill that gap.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Taking a Moment and Turning it into a Navigation Tool

Our little granddaughter loves pink, yellow, princesses, and unicorns. It was her fourth birthday and her mom bestowed gifts aligned with the things this 4 year old girl would love - a pink princess dress, rhinestone clip-on earrings with a matching necklace, long yellow satin gloves, and the final touch - a jeweled crown.

Placing these symbolic items on this little girl momentarily changed her. I could actually see her countenance change and she BECAME a princess right before our eyes. She even GLOWED!

For a moment, I could see her awareness was aligned with her true self!  She was now radiating purpose and strength from within. I could feel and see this transformation. This inner connection was important, but enhancing this so it can become a life-time tool is even more important. So, this is what I plan to do to change this temporary moment into a life-long navigation tool:
  1. Place This in Long-term Memory. We can help her place this moment into her long term memory by talking about it and telling her  to remember it. For example, we can say,  "Remember what happened on your birthday when you dressed up with your new princess clothes? Remember how good you felt? Honey, you need to remember this moment and how you felt. Remember that feeling."
  2. Identify the Good Feelings. Next, we need to help her recognize the good feelings she had during this moment. We can do this by saying "Do you remember how you felt when you dressed up like a princess? Can you describe what you felt to me? Was it joy? Was it happiness? Was it peace?" Labeling and getting acquainted with good feelings helps a person better recognize those sensations and associate those feelings with different types of events. Recognizing positive good feelings can help a person gain confidence in when to proceed. Good feelings can mean this is a good thing. 
  3. Using Feelings to Guide Choices. When something comes up when she needs to make a choice or make a decision, she can reflect back on a past experience when she felt positive, or was TRANSFORMED (like her birthday and being transformed into a princess). With her former memory and feelings now activated, she can assess and evaluate how new options makes her FEEL and how it compares to prior moments when she was transformed. If she can recreate the same type of good feeling, then it will be a good decision.
I believe a grandparent's job is to help their grandkid learn how to better navigate through life and learn the ways to make better choices and decisions. Learning how to pay attention to ones feelings, and then using feelings as a navigation tool can help the child make more informed decisions. Learning how to connect with their inner self and activating those deep feelings associated with ones inner self,  is one way to help them align their choices to their life purpose.