My wife and I keep our three granddaughters through the week. The oldest is three and a half and I'll call her V in this post. Her twin sisters are about ten months old. I probably don't have to say this, but......they keep us busy! I have a study that has a large desk with a glass top and two sets of Ikea bookshelves with glass doors. The study also has a fifteen pane glass door from the front entrance into the study. Our coffee table in our living room has four large glass panes as the top of the table.
Our oldest granddaughter, V, likes to sit in a chair at the coffee table to eat her breakfast and her afternoon snack using the glass pane table top as her dining table. By the time she leaves for the day, the glass is covered in crumbs and sticky substances and smudges. Clear evidence that a toddler sat there enjoying her snacks!
I remember when my kids were young and we had fingerprints and smudges on every glass surface they could get their little hands on. My daughter's favorite thing to do was to rub her fingers all over the window glass in the car where she sat high in her car seat. That window always looked a mess. She would draw pictures in any fog condensation on the window or would wet her fingers in her mouth and draw on the window. I don't know how many times I cleaned her car window over a few years time!
Her daughter, V, is now doing the same thing in our car whenever she gets the chance. Not as bad as her mom, but she still has the same talent. When I'm at my desk checking email, blogging, etc. on my laptop, V likes to come over and ask me to hold her. I grab her up and set her on one knee to spend some time with her. Her latest thing to do at my desk is to draw robots and robot dogs on a pad of paper that I jot my to do list on. While sitting there, she will also have a few TicTacs from a side drawer in the desk. By the time she leaves she has done a number on the glass top. After she leaves for the day, I will glance into the study and see the fingerprints and smudges all over the edge of the glass top on the desk and then I head to the kitchen to get the glass cleaner.
It dawned on me today that those daily fingerprints and smudges will only be around for a short time as V and her sisters get older. I envision that sometime in the future V will no longer want to sit on Pawpaw's knee or hang out with me like she does today. I know that I need to savor every moment I have with these three angels and enjoy the fingerprints and smudges. Those things are evidence that she was here and that she left her mark. V has left her mark on the bottom edges of the TV as she began to stand up and walk in her earlier years. She has left her mark on the bottom portion of windows as she was learning to pull up and stand up so she could look out the window or pat her little hand on it.
V's twin sisters are now beginning to leave their little prints and smudges as they crawl and pull up to those same windows and sit with me at my desk. I enjoy these times and know they will pass quickly. I figure that my wife and I have a short window of a few years with them in which we are a large part of their world.
These little angels are also leaving their fingerprints on my heart in the form of sweet memories and I hope that my wife, Nana, and I are leaving fingerprints on them that will help form and shape them into awesome people.
So, I will continue to clean the glass daily or weekly with a smile on my face, knowing that three little angels have passed through this space! The twins just woke up from their nap and they have taken their turns helping me finish this post. Both have left new tiny fingerprints on the edge of my desk top.
Do you have grandchildren or great grandchildren that leave their mark in your home and on your heart? What are the prime years that grandchildren think their grandparents are awesome? Do you feel that your time spent with them has helped guide and shape their lives?