Real Kid Stories
by Nita Holstine
I am always trying to remember stories and times that I want to make a record here to remember. One of the fun games of James' when he was 3 was one where James and his PawPaw would use the toy helicopter and airplane. They'd fly from tree branch to tree branch. Hiding and zipping around. James would fly either the helicopter or the airplane but he was always the good guy. He would never be the bad guy.
On one early summer day, James at age 3 came running inside yelling, PawPaw come and see a cucumber in the sky. So Randy goes out with the little guy. Sure enough, there was a cucumber and it was in the sky. It depends on how you look at where "on the ground" is and where "in the sky" begins. Only about a foot off the ground, it was indeed, in the sky.
This is the telling of an event in the young life of Jarrod Henry. He is the grandson of folks I used to work for. His mother had just bought him a new puppy. They'd looked and looked and finally decided on one. They had his doghouse ready for him in the back yard. They were ready. Now, the details are not clear but at some time during the night, Jarrod found that his puppy was on the back porch crying and not in his house. Jarrod was found in the doghouse asleep while the puppy was asleep on the porch. We don't know how big the search party before the 3 year old was found.
Car Race Magic
Grandpa Randy always watches car races. Except for Grand Prix perhaps but when a race is televised, we watch. At 3, James rarely watched any television but would be busy in the living room near this PawPaw. One day he just happened to be watching the screen in time to see a big crash of a lot of cars. Oh my, look at that! And he jumped into Pawpaw's lap and stayed there for the rest of the race. It became a ritual when there was a race, he and his grandpa watched together.
I had been thinking of kid stories and remembered the time when James had first come down for his week of my vacation. The week ended and we suddenly discovered that his mom had no summer day care so he had to stay on. We did find a day care center that would take a temporary kiddo and he started there. After the first day, he was greatly distressed and I asked what was wrong. He showed me his unbuttoned jeans. He couldn't snap them or zip them. His new teacher was just that, new and young and very pretty. So I dropped everything else and made 2 pair of jeans with stretchy waistbands. With his shirt out, you couldn't tell they weren't the regular Levi brand. He was ecstatic. He could do it himself and didn't need to ask his teacher for help. I was wonderful and could make magic things happen, indeed.
I was reminded of this today when a dear friend said, "Hidy." Yes, it is about James Wizzam (that's a whole other story.) Now, go see if you can make someone else smile.
Our oldest grandson turned 20 not long ago. He has graduated from the Marine Corp training and then got married. Grown up indeed. Back when he was 3 years old, he liked the grocery store so he could look at people. He was a small fellow and enjoyed sitting in the cart's seat (so I wouldn't have to chase him.) He would cautiously look at each person and if they made eye contact, he'd say "Hidy." 99% of the time, they would flash a big smile and say something like "well, hello. How are you?" and have a brief conversation. That made him happy. But one day a very sour old lady gave him a mean sneer and growled at him. He was heartbroken and tears fell from his little eyes. I told him that she was having a very bad day and that we'd just find someone else. It only took a few seconds and he had someone talking nicely to him. A big smile goes a long way.
Note about James William Moore. In the stories on this page, James was two and three years old. He went on to graduate from high school, has just completed Marine Corp. boot camp, got married and will return to begin combat training soon. What amazing things happen in just a few years. Photos coming soon.
I hadn't looked back at this page in a long time but it's been over a year. Time to keep adding to the collection.
One of our favorite stories is about Andy Elliott, brother to Randal Elliott. We (Randal was not born yet) were having a fine quiet day around the house when the phone rang. It was Joshua and we had a few hello-s, how are you-s. I realized that Andy had gone the other direction when the phone rang. And it was oh so quiet in the house.
I get to the living room to find Andy shaking up two canned red sodas. Just fixing to open both of them. They would have sprayed the ceiling and all the furniture but I had made it to the scene within a scant second of disaster. I could hear Joshua laughing and laughing while he waited for me to come back to the phone.
One of Randy's (aka POP or PawPaw) favorite stories to tell is about when James was about 2 years old. He and his mother were spending the night with us and she was giving him a bath. Randy was already in bed ready for sleeping. By the sounds of the adventure, James was out of the tub for maybe 30 seconds when he slips and falls to the floor. A record time between bath and needing another bath. His mother could be heard to say, "Oh James" and put him back in the tub for another rinse cycle. Splash, splash!
In our many efforts to get through bath time with James when he was 3, it was necessary to make games as we went along. PawPaw had invented the bugs bunny karate chops the dinosaur but then I was expected to know all the correct words and route they took as they went around the bathroom and into the bathtub. No other stories were acceptable and these games would end in "I want my PawPaw." Sigh.
So, one of James and my new games involved first turning on the shower to which he added his own version of an old song. At the top of his little lungs, he would bellow, "Shake it up Baby, Let's Twist and Shower." With this done, bath time was a much happier time.
The latest kid adventure that comes to mind is when James was 3 and he had called to tell us how he'd been oh so sick. He was glad to be feeling better.
I asked if he'd stayed home from school. Oh NO! He would miss something if he wasn't in school. Seems that it was the day for using the scissors and that was a weekly event. He wouldn't miss that day for anything. He wasn't about to sit home and be miserable thinking about the kids getting to make things at school.
James is turning 18, is graduating from high school and has been accepted on a full football scholarship at a Minnesota college. He is so very excited and his mama is scared silly.
During the glorious year when the little James William was 3 and spending a few weeks with us, it became our afternoon habit to stop by the Sonic drive-in before we went to pick up PawPaw from work. I first discovered this his idea of "soda" was something fizzy that comes in a glass bottles. Not so young grasshopper ! It can well be your choice of flavors in a cup with straw. Uuum good.
On one particular visit to Sonic we had just placed our order when a motorcycle policeman pulled up in the space next to us but on the driver's side. It took James two seconds to notice and be sitting up in the window and standing on the seat to look over the top of the car to wave and yell, "Hi Cop!" Oh he was so excited and fortunately the policeman was happy enough to smile big and wave back to him. James watched his every move and stared the entire time.
On another visit, I decided I would get me some onions rings. Sonic is famous for theirs made using real not chopped onions. I ordered James some french fries and of course, ketchup. I think it was the wonderful smell that got him. He tried them and liked them so much he left me only one and all of the french fries. By the time we picked up PawPaw, he had ketchup on his right ear, his left elbow and of course, his nose.
This story is one of Grandson Randal (namesake to PawPaw Randal) when he was about the age of 3. I enjoyed getting giant sheets of poster board and letting Randal and brother Andrew get to painting all over the boards. What beautiful items of artwork.
I just happened to look at one of Randal's one day and the thought occurred to me to ask the young fellow, how many moons do you think we have going around the earth. His pictures all had 2 suns and 3 moons. Well, he answered there are three. Sure enough, he'd watched Star Wars and saw where they had three moons around their planet and indeed, he thought we had at least three. He was disappointed to find out that we only have one sun and one moon. Ah man !
While James was the Bewitching Age of 3, he and I were outside one night discovering the wonders of his new flashlight. It was a fascinating new toy and we were having lots of fun lighting up the driveway.
It was a beautiful lightly cloudy brightly moonlight night. The clouds moved over the moon and it was noticeably darker. As we watched, I told James, "Just watch and the clouds will move on and the moon will be shining again." He went back to his play but suddenly, the moon is shining bright again and he looks at we in awe saying, "Wow, Grandma, How did you do that?" For at least a brief time, the sweet little guy thought I could make magic and the moon would shine just for him.
Randy related the story told by a co-worker one day when the subject turned to what kids can get into when they are three years old. One fellow mentioned how his twin teenage boys had been three once and he would never forget the day when he was in charge. He had picked the boys up from day care and was waiting for his wife to get off work. The boys being nice and quiet should have been a true warning sign but he smiled thinking he was just doing a very good job.
Several people passed by and gave him frowning glances but quickly looked away. When his wife got into the car she yells at him to just look at what the boys are doing. They had so very quietly taken mom's box of feminine protection product and opened the pads, taken off the tape and stuck them all the the windows within their reach. Now, they can laugh about it !
This story was related by James' mother, Janice (#1 daughter) not long after it had happened. James will turn 18 on August 21, 2003 and we're remembering back when he was 3 years old. Janice said that she had gone in the apartment for "just a minute" while James played on the apartment playground. During those few minutes, he seemed to just disappear along with all the other children. In the next 30 minutes, she had called the police and they began a door-to-door search.
Sure enough, he had followed the McDonald's french fries home with the other kids. The kid's mother asked this 3 year old shouldn't he tell his mother where he was, No, he replied. He was busy eating those fries!!
James' mom was sure happy to find him but I doubt she trusted that mother to watch over James any more, even for a few minutes.