Sunday Snap: Forever in my Heart

My dad in his younger days. Always missed and forever in my heart.

 “That’s my father.”  … Seemingly an innocent and offhand remark made by the youngest of his three children, those three little words meant much more to our dad. I know it made him feel proud and happy to be that father, that figure of authority and loving protector of his family.
It was a responsibility he took seriously, a role that only he could execute with his unique brand of friendship, understanding and humour…” 

~ excerpt from That’s My Father, 03/21/13

I’m thinking of relatives and friends who lost their fathers very recently.
My heart goes out to them today.

   Wishing all the wonderful dads
a Happy Father’s Day
❤ ❤ ❤

Thanks, Mom!

Mom cut my bangs

Dear Mom,

Thank you for the many, many things you’ve ever done for me. As it is for most mothers, they are far too numerous to list here.

An endless list, actually. Hey, you even took it upon yourself to trim my bangs from time to time. Why would we bother driving to the beauty parlor when you were there, eager and happy to do it? How hard could it be? And naturally, your other daughter’s bangs didn’t escape your butchery expertise either.

Now Mom, I understand we were a one-income household at the time and you liked saving money wherever possible, but don’t you think your scissors-happy ways may have been a tad aggressive, especially for a school photo, recorded for posterity?

This practice of yours was nearly as darling as your penchant for dressing up my sister and me as twins. Never mind that I was two and a half years older than her.

And yet, as I flip through this old family album, my heart swells.

I see your smile.

I hear your laughter.

I feel the love.

I see my happy childhood, personified, in all of these snaps of captured memories.

And you know what, Mom? It makes me realize I wouldn’t change a single thing.

– Love your daughter,
Jennifer

Wishing a Happy Mother’s Day to all the loving moms out there!

Imagination

kids wearing coffee filter hats
Sunday Snap: Imagination

 Coffee filters have many uses.
All you need is a little imagination.
And a little brother to share them with.

This photo wasn’t taken yesterday – our angels are 10 and 12 now.

“That’s the real trouble with the world, too many people grow up.” ~ Walt Disney

Sea Star

seastar

Sunday Snap: Sea Star

There’s treasure children always seek to find
and just like us
you must have had
a Once-Upon-a-Time.*


Did you know?
 Marine scientists have replaced the starfish’s common name with sea star because it’s not a fish. It’s an echinoderm, closely related to sea urchins and sand dollars. There are 2,000 species of sea star living in all the world’s oceans. The five-arm varieties are the most common. Sea stars have an eye at the tip of each arm.

Common name: Starfish (Sea Stars)

Scientific name: Asteroidea

Type: Invertebrate Carnivore

Average life span: Up to 35 years

Weight: Up to 11 lbs

 source: National Geographic

 

*from Curtains by Elton John & Bernie Taupin

High School Speak-Out

Last Friday, I had the honour to serve as one of three judges in our local high school’s speak-out competition.

Held and sponsored by Badger’s Quay Lions Club, this year’s event boasted nineteen students competing from Pearson Academy, the highest number of participants in all of Atlantic Canada. Good on you, teen citizens!

Purpose of a Speak-Out:

• To provide youth with the opportunity to practice and build skills through public speaking
• To encourage youth to have a public voice in issues of concern to them

And the winners are:

Left to right: Leah Lewis, Megan Kelloway, and Bridgette Burry

Bridgette, 3rd place. Topic: The dangers of drunk driving.

Leah, 2nd place. Topic: Being “Seventeen” in today’s world.

Megan, 1st place. Topic: How cancer in a family affects the children. As the winner, Megan will go on to compete at the regional level next month.

Megan had us teary-eyed (her mom survived)
Leah had us laughing with her take on Seventeen
Boys took part but were outnumbered by the girls.

What stood out about the winners: plenty of eye contact, how well they articulated their thoughts, and how animated and relaxed they were with the audience.

19 participants (plus a few more) attending the event from Pearson

I thought all the students did very well with the preparation of their chosen material. As per speak-out regulations, however, several excellent speeches received penalties for exceeding time limits.

I enjoyed this event immensely and would love to be invited back again, and I’m super-encouraged by the high level of participation and interest in public speaking demonstrated by our local youth.

Has your child ever competed in a public speaking event?
Share your experiences with me below.

Dancing with the Waves

Not to be confused with last month’s Jumping the Waves.

I thought it only fair to feature both of our grandchildren enjoying the ocean!

Travel Theme: Warm

Jumping the Waves

Photo first published here: Sunshine, Surf and Sand

I’m away, so comments are closed. Have a lovely Sunday! – JKP

How to Use Nature to Connect with Your Grandkids

Today’s post is brought to you by my guest, author Susan Day.

Photo by Fay on Unsplash

Spending time with your grandchildren is one of the best things you can do for them, and for you too, for that matter.

Sure, kids love gifts and candy, and they get really excited about going to a theme park or spending time with their friends. However, there is a secret world which exists right outside the window and one which has a powerful allure. I’m referring to nature.

Nature offers an endless array of beauty and wonder, and for the most part it’s free and easy to access. Taking your grandchildren outdoors is a great way to build a strong connection with them. Just spending time and ‘being’ with children is important for their wellbeing.

Some children don’t get outdoors enough, and the simple act of wandering along the street, running at the park or tramping through the beach sand is an experience they are sadly missing out on.

Ignite a Sense of Curiosity

Research tells us that curious kids are intelligent kids. The more questions they ask, the more their minds grow and develop.

Nature has a bounty of things to be curious about. You could literally spend hours outside with your grandchildren exploring, and you don’t have to live near a forest or a beach to enjoy nature either. It’s in your yard, in your neighbor’s yard, at your local park, or any place a tree is growing and the birds are singing.

Do your grandkids know where bees go, and what they are doing buzzing around those flowers? Do they know why some birds migrate, and others live in the same area all their lives?

Point Out the Beauty in Small Objects

Each time your grandchildren come to visit, make a point of taking them outside and showing them something nature is doing. It might be new buds on the tree or the color autumn leaves are turning.

How many people rush through their busy days, not noticing subtle changes happening around them? Isn’t there something magnificent about the way birds take off or the way clouds move across the sky?

“Isn’t that interesting…” you might begin to say, and then point out an aspect of nature that is happening right under their very noses.

Look at a Leaf

What shape is it? Does it have any spots or spines? Compare it to another leaf from a plant that is growing close by. What things are similar? What are different? You could also begin a leaf scrap-book and share details of trees and shrubs that live in your area.

Analyse an Ant

Who doesn’t love bugs? Well, most adults don’t find them interesting, but kids love ’em! Bugs, beetles, aphids, and ants are like miniature dinosaurs or creatures from outer space living in our backyards. Without interfering with their busy lives, make a point of sharing these remarkable creatures with your grandchild.

Marvel at Moths

Moths, butterflies and dragonflies all go about their daily lives in nearly every place on earth, living in the most amazing ways.

Your grandchildren will love to learn about them. They will enjoy the wonder nature has to offer through your eyes, and come to a deeper understanding of how remarkable the world really is.

“I’d Rather Watch TV, Grandma!”

Nature has a way of going about its business whether we are watching or not, and all the while our televisions and devices are nagging us to watch and engage.

You may find your grandchildren are not used to examining nature in so much detail. They may not understand what you are getting at, but one thing is for sure: they won’t forget the time you have spent with them and how important nature was to you. It is a privilege to be able to see what nature is doing, and stand in awe of what it will do next.

What child doesn’t deserve to be introduced to all of this wondrous world?

No doubt your grandkids will grow and mature, and will find themselves stopping to admire a flower or cloud patterns. They will turn to a friend, their partner or even their own children, and share memories they have of you and how you introduced them to one of the most magnificent things on this planet – nature.

About Susan Day

Susan Day is a passionate author, educator and, of course, a grandmother. She wants to empower all grandparents to build meaningful relationships with their grandchildren. Discover here the Top 10 Things Happy Grandparents Never Regret Doing.

Susan lives in Australia with four dogs, three bossy cats, two rescue guinea pigs, and an errant kangaroo.

***

Interested in sharing one of your original articles as a guest? Feel free to submit your ideas to jennifer@jenniferkellandperry.com. Preference is given to topics relevant to my blog, such as books, writing, nature, photography, travel, children and pets. – Jennifer

Sunday Snap: the Challenge

wishes to all
for an inspired and creative week

❤ ❤ ❤

Sunday Snap: Play*

*Sunday Snap is a brand new feature on my blog, starting today. Drop by every Sunday to see which favourite photo I’ve chosen to highlight. 🙂