Wednesday, April 27, 2011

On Being A Nana by Rie McGaha

On Being A Nana by Rie McGaha

My granddaughter, Meagan is eighteen months old. We live in the same house, so I am watching her grow up on a day-to-day basis. She is larger than other children her age. At three feet tall and thirty-four pounds, she's the size of the average three year old. There is nothing unusual in this once you know her mother is 6' 2" and normally weighs around one hundred and ninety pounds. Meagan's daddy is 6' 7" tall and weighs in right around two hundred and eighty pounds. Meagan is also a little genius, and I don't mean that in the way grandparents think their grandchildren are all so smart, cute and funny. While I do think that about all 34 of my grandchildren (#'s 35 & 36 will be here later this year), Meagan is literally a genius with an IQ way above her age group.

At eighteen months, she knows colors, numbers, shapes, and sings songs like Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. She already pretends, and invents her own games. Also very adept at figuring things out on her own, like how to open the baby gates, get to stuff on high shelves, and she watches the things the adults in her life do. She knows how the quad works and thankfully, she is not yet strong enough to pull the starter cable. Her daddy allows her to operate the throttle and she likes to go fast. She is also allowed to drive our trucks while sitting in our laps. (Now before I hear any complaints, we live in the country, one-lane roads, and we have over 400 acres with no neighbors or traffic. The mail Jeep going by is our traffic.)

As I sit and watch her going about her little baby games, I am constantly amazed at how her little mind works. She is also talking very well for her age, and not just saying words. She says full sentences and is very observant. One day while I was in the bathroom, Meagan walks in and looks around, went to the shower, looked up at the faucet, then turned to me, and said, "The water's off." And went on her way. The TV in the living room and in Meagan's room is tuned to Nick Jr. all day long. At first, I thought it would be too much TV for her, but she only really watches certain things. The Backyardigans, Dora The Explorer, and Go! Diego, Go! are among her favorite shows, and the Fresh Beat Band gets her full attention.

Meagan is also a brute and fearless. Nothing scares her, and when one of the adults trip, she rolls with laughter. When we hide behind a door and jump out when she walks by, it cracks her up. Being chased results in peals of laughter, and any time she can bop one of us with a toy, she's in baby heaven.

The dynamics between my grandchildren and I are so different than they were with my children at that age. I love having all the fun with little of the responsibility. Sure, I cook for her, bathe her, and watch over her, but I am also much more lenient as a Nana than as a mom. I love being able to give my grandchildren the things I couldn't give my children, simply because I didn't have the resources then as I do now. I also allow my granddaughter to do what she wants. She drinks coffee with breakfast, shaves her legs, uses deodorant, the blow dryer, and loves having her nails painted.

Being a Nana is a very cool job that I've had since I was thirty-four. Yes, far too young to become a grandmother, which is exactly what I told my daughter when my oldest grandchild, Mathew was born. I told her if he ever called me "Grandma," I would smack her. Now Mathew is eighteen and graduates from high school in June, and being a Nana has been the best job I've ever had, and one I recommend to everyone.

~ * ~

Author Bio:
Rie McGaha was born and raised in northern California along the shores of Humboldt County where her grandmother often took her to dig for clams and watch the whales migrate. Being raised with the mountains on one side and the ocean on the other, gave Rie a deep love for nature. She has resided in the Kiamichi Mountains of SE Oklahoma for more than ten years where she rescues animals, nurses them back to health and tries to find homes for them. In her free time she enjoys riding motorcycles, and is a member of
The Patriot Guard, and supports our troops. She is the mother of 12 and Nana of 33.

Rie McGaha's Links:
The Pagan & The Pen Book Reviews: 



                                             Calen by Rie McGaha


When Calen MacLeod begins having dreams of an ethereal beauty who beckons to him, he passes it off as just having an itch he hasn't scratched in a long time. But when he leaves on a journey to find her, following the directions she's given him in his dreams, he begins to doubt his sanity. And when he finds himself high in the Mackinaw Mountains in a secret fortress with unicorns and a pink and white castle, surrounded by women, each one more beautiful than the next, it's a fantasy no man would want to wake up from. But Arianna is the only woman for Calen.

The women of the Fortress have lived in peace, hidden away from the humans who tried to annihilate them all. But now a 500-year-old demon is out to destroy the women's matriarch, Ariella, and he'll stop at nothing to complete his mission. When Calen MacLeod shows up, he throws a wrench into Damon's plans. Never let it be said Damon isn't ready for anything, but when he kidnaps Arianna and takes her to modern day San Francisco, is he ready to meet Calen, who will stop at nothing to save his ladylove?

Calen by Rie McGaha Excerpt 
The fire rose in the dark, casting its light in a wide circle. The woman stood with her hands raised over her head, her back arched and her face tilted toward the moonless sky. Only a backdrop of black velvet covered in stars glittering like diamonds lay overhead. She chanted in a language strange to his ears while her body swayed rhythmically. Blue, red and yellow sparks shot from the fire. The wind gusted and blew her long hair back, while her sheer gown billowed around her. He was mesmerized, enchanted, aroused. He remained in the shadows, wanting her, but not wanting to intrude. Suddenly, all went still, and she looked directly at him. Though he remained hidden, he sensed she knew he was there. She began walking toward him, but stayed  within the circle of light cast by the fire.
"Come," she whispered.
He stood frozen in place.
"Come to me," she whispered again.
He remained where he was.
"When you are ready to know, come to me."

Calen bolted upright, ready for action, but nothing stirred. A dream, he thought, his eyes growing accustomed to the darkness.


Tina Donahue said...

Meagan sounds adorable. A 6'7" daddy, huh? Does he play basketball? :)

Delaney Diamond said...

Meagan didn't have any choice but to be tall, did she? Sounds like you're having a ball with the grandkids, which is the way it should be.

Sarah J. McNeal said...

You live in such an idealic place or at least it sounds like one. You're so lucky to have meagan live right there with you so you can be a part of her growing up and her memories will include you. Mother's Day is coming up so you and your daughter can both receive special treatment at your house.
I wish you all the best, Rie and Meagan, too.

Fiona McGier said...

Not ready for grandbabies yet...looking forward to when I will be. But then I didn't even want a baby until I was 30! So I guess I've been a late bloomer that way...we made the newlywed stage last for years and enjoyed every minute!

Haunting look on that man's face on the cover of Calen. Good luck with sales.

Ari Thatcher said...

I am SO ready for grandbabies! So far they continue to bide their time in arriving. I think it's such a joy watching them become big people.

Adele Dubois said...


Thirty-six grandchildren? Wow. That's a lot of love to go around. Congratulations.

Best wishes on your release, too!


Rie McGaha said...

Thank you all for coming by. I apologize for not being here earlier but today was one of those days. Meagan's mommy is expecting a lil brother for her and had an OB appt. so I had Meagan all morning, then I had my debut podcast with guest, non other than Ms. Sarah McNeal, followed by grabbing purse and shoes to dash out of the house to drive a couple of hours over to Ardmore where I met the husband/wife truck driving team, Marty & Tracie, who brought my newly adopted doggie from NC all the way here to OK. Whew! It's been a long day. Thank you, Tina and Sarah for having me here today. You two are in my top ten of favorite people.