My granddaughter came over to visit tonight. 

We went for a walk before it got too late, her, my daughter and my grandson. She’s only three and I thought the two kilometre walk I normally take would be too much for her, but she’s such a little trooper, she had no problems keeping up. She even insisted on pushing the stroller from time to time.  

I really look forward to seeing them all, but there’s just something about my granddaughter! At one point during the walk she looked up at me and said, “Nani, I love you when you read me books!”

My heart just melted!

My grandson is still a Mama’s boy. He’s fine as long as he can see my daughter. But then my granddaughter was just like that too, at his age.

When we got back my other daughter opened the door for us.  And soon the third joined us, and their husbands, and we were one big happy family.

When my Somali son in law brought a tin of candies for my granddaughter, my husband cajoled some of the chocolates from her, and one big one she insisted on keeping turned out to be a macadamia nut covered in dark chocolate that she took a bite of and then handed over because, ‘that one’s for Grandpa’.

My Afghan son in law teased her, telling her that he was going to take all of the candies. She argued back saying no, they were hers. So my son in law said that if she took more than one she’d have to fit them all in her mouth at the same time. She said, no, she’d choke!

It was so cute!

They went back and forth, back and forth, and then after a while she said, “Nani, I want a book.”

And we went upstairs to the spare room, where I keep the treadmill and we sat on the walking part, like we do everytime, because then we’re in reach of the lowest shelf where I keep all the picture books, many of them signed to me by various children’s authors.

We read, and we read, then she picked out Robert Munsch’s Love You Forever.  I have two versions of it. One’s hard cover in a fancy case, signed to me, and the other is a paperback that is just signed.

I was a bit nervous taking the book out of the fancy case. I was worried I wouldn’t be able to keep my composure.

I’m a sucker for this story! I know what people have said about it! That it’s not really a children’s book, it’s a sappy adult book, and that some people find it creepy that the mother drives across town to climb in the window and pick up her grown up son and rock him back and forth, back and forth, but I think children understand that as hyperbole.

I’ve heard of so many ‘experts’ say that it doesn’t appeal to children, and the illustrations are hideous (which they are!) and yet, the story touches me deeply, and yup, I got choked up when I read it to her.

When we’d finished reading it, my granddaughter did a strange thing. She said, “Okay, I’ll take this one.”

To me the fact that she chose it, says that it is so a children’s book. In fact it’s one of the rare ones that can appeal to children and adults at the same time.

But I gave her the paperback one that wasn’t signed to me. Somehow I wasn’t ready to part with the other one.

This is one of the only ways that I ‘spoil’ my granddaughter.

She has tons of books!