Now that we’re into the second week of 2024 it feels nice to be falling into a routine again.


I’m not sure if others felt the same, but between the Thanksgiving-Christmas-New Year’s holidays and various illnesses in our household we seemed to lack any kind of routine the past couple months.  At least one of us seemed to be sick through most of December and in some cases both of us were at the same time.  Life seems to be finally getting back on track.


This week, after about a two-month break, our local library started their programming up again.  If you think libraries are only a place for checking out books or getting free Wi-Fi, you should take a second look.  Our local library, and all the ones in our county, have great programs for families and especially children.  You may find the same is true where you live.  The program I am most familiar with is Bouncing Babies, described as a time for stories, rhymes, music, and bouncing games for ages 1 to 18 months.  Jenni and I usually try to take our granddaughter Emma to this on Wednesdays and give her mom a chance to do other things.  We spend an hour singing and bouncing as well as learning to share toys with about twenty other children who are all at the same stage of learning how to share! (The adults are generally pretty good about sharing!)


This past Wednesday, Jenni had a church event to attend so it was just me and Emma for that hour at the library.  I don’t know the names of any adults who attend, but that afternoon I could describe to Jenni various children and she knew exactly who I was talking about.  One in particular I just refer to as my “girlfriend” and Jenni instantly knows it is the little toddler who likes to bring me every toy in the room.  Sometimes when you are the only grandpa in the room you become a “chick magnet”!  I don’t know about Emma, but I’ve been able to make several new friends through this program!  The hour gives the moms in the group, and the occasional dad, a chance to talk to other moms living the same highs and lows.  I’m not so sure they care what an old man has to say, so I just roll the ball to their children and do my best to monitor the toys that pass mouth to mouth.   The few grandparents in the group do tend to bond more easily.

I noticed this week that the other grandparents seem more exhausted than Jenni or I do.  But as far as I know they are caretakers 5 days a week so I totally get that.  For me, the one day a week that we have Emma is generally the ONLY day I take a nap! 


I was very interested in another library program announced at our meeting:  Potato Chip Party!  Evidently the children will learn the history of potato chips, eat potato chips, and make a craft (out of potato chips I assume).  Unfortunately this one is geared toward older children so I’ll have to wait a couple years to participate—with Emma of course!


Routine is important to someone with the mindset of an accountant, even in retirement.  It’s nice to be back into it.

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