Graceisms: How The Brilliant Mind Of A Preschooler Keeps Me Young At Heart

It is my great joy to be a regular babysitter to the world’s most precocious, thoughtful, insightful and hilarious three – year – old: Gracie.  You know those Moleskine journals you can get at Barnes and Noble? I carry one with me at ALL times. I write down ideas for sermons, my blog queue, professor quotes (blog post soon to come on that, get excited), and mostly, Gracie quotes.

As crazy as it may sound, some of the most delightful conversations I have during the week are with Grace. She tells it like it is, and the way that it is, by the way, in her mind, is pretty on point. We talk a lot about our families, how she has a nana and I have a Walsie, we talk about how we don’t know very many alligators, about how Goliath, the Philistine, would probably be nice to Grace if she met him, and about birthday parties she’s been to. We talk about who is having a birthday in her class, and we often sing “Happy Birthday” to her stuffed animals, to her blankie, to her snack…

Grace loves the stories of Zacchaeus, baby Jesus and baby Moses. She loves being read to from her Bible, and one of my favorite things is when Maggie (Gracie’s little sister) and I get to join Grace’s stuffed animals for “Sunday school” in her room.

So, for another “just for funsies” post, I give you the sweet and thoughtful hilarity of Grace.

The Sweet:

Once, while we were praying before bed, she told me all the people she wanted to pray for and then she said “wanna pray for Sawa grandparents.”

I brought her a cupcake as a special snack one day. She ate it slowly, as if savoring every bite, and after she’d finished she said ” I wuv my cuckcake so much. That be something really special for me.”

Is your heart melting yet?

We were doing a puzzle (don’t judge me, it was actually kind of hard for me, and she’s freakishly good at them). She’d done it a few times, so then she wanted me to try. Noticing that I wasn’t as quick as she, she became my cheerleader of sorts, saying things like “try it this way” or “maybe it doesn’t go there, but that’s ok.” When I finally finished the puzzle, she stood up and exclaimed “Good job, Sawa!”

We talk about our families all the time. She has one sister and I have two, how I have two cats and two dogs, and a kitchen table just like she does. She asked me one day, again, what my sister’s names were. “Ana and Jojo,” I said. “Ana and Jojo?” she asked “those are your ‘Maggies?'”

She’s often since then reminded me that I have two “Maggies” and she has one.

The Thoughtful

Her mind astounds me. One day, we were playing Duplos, and we made a town. She told me that it was downtown Florida.

Grace is currently obsessed with trampolines and balance “beans,” ever since the olympics. She told me a few weeks ago that she “went to Budapest a few months ago, to get a trampoline because the ones here are too big for her.”

Actually, she became quite the little sports commentator during the olympics.

“Remember that time the horsie splashed in the water? I watched that”

“Sometimes when I watch the horsies jumping, I like to say ‘WOW! That’s GREAT!’ But sometimes when I see a horse do something bad, I say *gasp*, *GASP* oh no! You knocked that over. Now you have-a (have to) put the pole back on one of the gates.”

When we play sidewalk chalk, we very often have to make the family table, with mommy,daddy, Gracie and Maggie, tacos or spaghetti for dinner, and a bowl of candy for later.

The Hilarious

I saved the best for last. I have been laughing about this all week. I try not to laugh when she says things, because she is, after all, a little person and no one likes to be laughed at. BUT, this one was just too much. I kinda lost it, but I tried to hide it. She was concentrating on taking her turn in our game, so hopefully she didn’t notice.  We were playing the Thomas game with Pooh Bear, Baby Katy (her doll from Budapest) and Giraffe.

It was Pooh’s turn, Grace informed me, so I helped him match the card with Rusty’s picture on to Pooh’s Thomas bingo card. “Winnie – a – Pooh,” Grace said “is a man who can get things. He’s a father AND he has two grandsons named Grace and Maggie!”

What. A. Mind. As much as its great to be adored by a tiny friend, it’s much more fun for me to adore her right back and to learn from her carefree spirit, her love of learning, her ability to let her imagination run wild. It IS possible to be inspired by tiny friends. I’m inspired by her love of Jesus, her concern for the birds who play on the roof, to whom she calls out “be careful, birdies!”, her love of people and animals, and her thirst for more: of life, of Jesus, of time with her family.

The kingdom of God, indeed, belongs to such as these.

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