Yes, I know he was only 4 years old at the time.
Yes, I know that at 4 years old, children are vulnerable, trusting and naive. I understand that they need a loving, nurturing environment in which they can feel secure, stable and safe. A kid needs someone to trust and depend on.
Parents. Those are the people who are assigned to keep the kid safe, and his life balanced.
Grandparents. Those are the people who are tasked with doing everything they can to make the parents' job harder. And I love my new job. It includes playing imaginary tennis with imaginary tennis rackets, making elaborate tents in the living room, and hair-pulling.
So I wrote my grandson Cayden a letter. We lived only as far from each other as the distance between Anderson and Elwood at the time, but that's OK. Kids need to walk out to the mailbox and retrieve a real actual letter every now and then.
The letter was simple.
We have a little problem at mamaw's house.
Your toy dinosaurs are coming alive at night when we are asleep, like in your movie "Toy Story." They are causing all kinds of trouble for me. They are making a mess!
I love you. Mamaw."
Yes. I. Really. Did. This.
And let me tell you...it's way more fun than any Santa Claus myth.
But it's one thing to hear that news in a letter. It's another thing to see pictures.
So naturally I included a few pictures as proof. His dinosaurs were posed on the kitchen table, standing amid open containers of Play-Doh. They gripped balls of yellow Play-Doh in their wide open plastic mouths. The T-Rex held a plastic Play-Doh spatula between his bared teeth, while his big foot was mired in a Play-Doh puddle. The brontosaurus had a Play-Doh ball stuck on the end of his long tail.