Plastic Bags, Babies and Tina

“You broke a health rule, but you didn’t know,” I tell Tina. “But we’ll have to tell Mommy.”

Tina’s not to blame for what she doesn’t know, but this is serious. Maria has to be told.

When Maria gets home, I explain that Tina put a plastic bag over her head but she didn’t know she was breaking a rule. It was a heavy plastic garbage bag, not the filmy plastic that can smother a baby, but what an opportunity for a safety lesson!

I love Maria’s reaction.

“Ask Grandma why it’s wrong,” she instructs.

I explain that sometimes people can’t breathe when they have plastic bags on their faces.

“Sometimes people can’t breathe,” Tina repeats.

Then Maria goes on to explain that we can’t put plastic bags on babies or old people or kitties or anyone else, and has Tina give her the reason again.

I love the way Maria enters Tina’s world to teach her this important lesson. I’d thought of babies, and the soon-to-arrive baby in Maria’s home, but I hadn’t thought of old people and kitties. Fluffy Kitty and Kendra Kat are a big part of Tina’s life.

Tina understands this is serious business, and she listens respectfully.

That brings me back to a scolding that put a smile on my face.

We’ve had a happy playtime and it’s time for me to go. Or at least I think it’s time for me to go. Tina blocks the door, arms folded. “I’m getting so tired of you going home!” she scolds in her best annoyed grown-up voice.

I humbly explain that I have to go home to Grandpa. Tina forgives me, and sings me a little two-line song–made up on the spot–to sing to Grandpa when I get home.

“Teach me Thy way, O LORD”  Psalm 86:11


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