Until 4 year-old Robert Charles forced the introduction, I had no idea just who or what the Backyardigans were. But as I’ve said before, the Nana learning curve is steep. I had to climb hard and learn fast. Do you know who they are? I’d love to hear about what you readers have had to learn for your grandchildren.
As I found out, Backyardigans are just one more set of peace-loving, gentle natured cartoon characters, beloved by many preschoolers, including my darling grandson. They include a moose named Tyrone, a hippo named Tasha, Pablo the penguin, Uniqua and Austin, creatures whose species eludes me. I was never good at science.
I absolutely adore this little guy. He is almost a clone of his father, my son, both physically and emotionally (translation: gorgeous and challenging).
After Robert goes home, I follow his long established, clandestine route through my house. I turn out all the back bedroom nightstand lights (on the little brass tap-tap-tap switches), turn on the daylight sensor front porch light switch, reset my dishwasher to “normal wash” from his preferred “pots and pans” and “air dry” cycles, turn off his four favorite outdoor hoses, and once again mute the sound on my computer. We rarely catch him in the act but when we do he is nonplused, like a meter reader just doing his job.
Recently, the mysterious disappearance of his sister’s Princess Barbie was solved by the plumber who came to unstop the toilet in the children’s bathroom. After visiting his aunt and uncle on the other side of the state, a small palm frond was removed from their toilet by another expensive plumber.
Sometimes, if I am very tired, my mind wanders and I wonder just what I am going to do with Ryan Andrew. But there are signs that Robert is maturing, i.e. we no longer have to dump the dog food from the water dish after he has been at Nana’s.
Much as I long to dress him in button-on-suits and lace collars, he is his own little man and he does not wear such clothes. Even with the strong encouragement and approval of both his father and mother, he has turned up his little turned up nose to all such suggestions that he wear heirloom style clothing. Robert’s year round standard garb is a tee shirt, “short sleeve pants” and no shoes, except when he goes to preschool where both shoes and a uniform golf shirt are required. The shoes go on and off in the school parking lot.
Nothing makes him happier than for me to acquiesce to his perpetual plea, “Make me a shoowrt, Nana.” He has oodles of character shirts, including Disney, Spiderman, Autobot, Curious George, Diego and others. Still, has asks for more. So I sew, he hugs and I melt. I take some comfort in the fact that it saves me time, as few things are quicker than embroidering a kiddie tee shirt. But the real comfort is that I know Robert loves me and that he knows I love him, as evidenced by shirts and hugs and kisses.
I would so love to hear from readers about what you sew for your grandchildren. Am I the only Nana sewing unlovely tee shirts?