It takes time to get to know each grandchild and it is the extended time that is so precious in our hearts and minds. The moments of hugs and cuddling are so needed to this old lady's soul. I hope those times are special to each child's heart also and that they will remember something good about their grandparents.
It makes my heart leap with joy when the youngest ones greet us by running to us with hugs. I will always cherish that greeting of love that only grows more precious as the children grow older. The quiet times of reading books together as they intently listen to each word and inflection. Listening as another child reads a chapter book to me that is just the kind of book I would have chosen when I was her age.
There are the little conversations that leave me wondering when the child became so wise and knowledgeable. The shared glances of mischievous grins, just overflowing with love. The times when the driving grandchild walks into the house, introducing a special friend. The enjoyment of conversation over a meal together, catching up on the grandchild's busy life and being in awe of the wonderful woman she is becoming.
I savor the snapshots in my mind of watching as the older siblings lead the younger ones in bedtime prayers - seeing the love between them all. Listening to conversations between the children that make me smile and chuckle. Feeling such pride as I hear the dreams and goals expressed by each child. Gathering all these moments of memories and locking them safely away as treasures in my heart. Thank you, God, for the blessing of grandchildren. There is no greater gift in life.
"Children's children are a crown to the aged, and parents are the pride of their children" (Proverbs 17:6 NIV).