04 October 2009

Through the Eyes of a Child

I spent this evening in the company of my six year old nephew. He was here for a sleep-over which he's done many times before. Usually we play a game, make popcorn and watch a movie or two. This time I decided that we should try something different and I suggested we write a story together. Now, my nephew is a great storyteller (he's the inspiration for the book I'm struggling to write) so he thought this was a great idea.

We got into comfy clothes, sat down on the floor and began. I asked him to start the story and he did so with very little effort. Then I added a line or two and then back to him again. Sort of a call-and-response type of method. I wrote furiously, trying to keep up with all the ideas flying back and forth. After a bit, we finally agreed on an ending to the story and I sat down at the computer to type it out. He was quite impressed by this and by the fact that I would be printing copies out for him to take home. The one-page story, complete with pictures is titled "The Three Little Monkeys". And, I might add, it was his idea that we autograph each copy. This child thinks ahead! I believe he has plans to provide a copy to everyone on his street.

Afterward we moved ourselves to the porch to watch the full moon work it's way across the sky. We sat on blankets eating peanut butter & jelly sandwiches, popcorn and juice. My nephew is a talker and I sat there and really listened to him for a change. Really paid attention to what this little one had to say. What I discovered while I listened was not a child rambling on but a "person" with new ideas, new opinions, new hopes. And all of that stated with a confidence that was staggering. He made me laugh out loud and as I sit here typing I'm smiling as I remember something he said that tickled me.

Tonight was a good night. I co-wrote a lovely story, I had a picnic under the moon and I was given the opportunity to experience all of this through a child's eyes. We're already planning another story for the next time. My co-author insists that it will be a much longer story with more pictures. I'm very much looking forward to the next time.

Tonight's blog is also a thanks to a wonderful friend in Germany. His advice and inspiration were the foundation for the attempt at story-telling tonight. Be well Olaf :)


  1. Communicating with a child... I thought this was a lost art. i see so many young parents,yapping on a cel phone when taking their toddlers for a walk,what a missed opportunity!! I looked forward to walking my kids, when they were young, answering their questions, telling them what everything was,etc.. i KNOW that it pays dividends in the future.. Beautiful story,Diana! tom

  2. What a lovely night indeed! That will be a moment he will carry with him forever in his soul. I'd love to read the story!!!

  3. You are a good Auntie, Diana. I enjoyed this story very much. It made me smile! : )

  4. Thank you Tom, Tiff and Anonymous (?) for the comments. You have no idea how much they mean to me. So much appreciated :)

  5. Diana, you RAWK. :)

  6. Haha - a lost art indeed! I miss doing this with my own children. As stated by Tom, I have also seen too many parents strolling their children & gabbing on the phone. How stupid!! Embrace this time - as I walk with my 8 month old granddaughter I gab away to her - she probably has no idea what I'm talking about but who knows - we discuss the birds, the sky, trees, people walking by, whatever strikes my fancy. I laugh at myself because I think people are looking at me funny wondering if I'm nuts! Who cares - spending quality time with little ones is amazing!!! I hope I get a copy of the story (with the autographs :)

    Grandma J-Bird