Gadgets of Growth & Goodness by Chrissy Guinery

A little red toolbox takes centre-stage on a huge, colourful, shag rug in front of a glowing fire.

My youngest grandchild and I are emptying the plastic toolbox of its contents one by one, until an odd assortment of gadgets and miniature replicas of ‘big people’ toys lay scattered about us. So far we have explored a blue hammer, purple toothbrush, two mini cars, three lego people, a plastic cupie doll, a leather doggy purse and some pretend food cleverly designed after a corn cob.

Different textures, shapes, bright colours and sizes are being handled with great fascination within his small, chubby hands; explored, felt, tasted, shaken, sniffed and licked, held high and then thrown down to be added to the growing number of toys littering the rug beside said little red toolbox.

It is a delightful bonding time as I watch his facials constantly changing and can almost see his brain taking in and storing new information as we comb through the box of treasures. I coax him in his hand gestures and smiles; in his strange noises as he finds his voice; in the contentment, stimulation, exploration and growth we’re sharing. We are making memories; beginning new traditions, and I know my time spent lolling on the rug with him is helping form his view on the wider world.

He’s a unique little fellow; quite different to the playful rowdiness of our older grandchildren with their toolboxes full of music, DVDs, ipods, books, colouring pencils, DSs and constant activity.

As we pause for snuggles and cuddles, sharing the happiness and joy of discovery, it’s prompting me to think about my own toolbox – what do I carry about, play with, gain happiness from, share and enjoy? I know I’m not your average adult, though who wants to be ‘average’ anyway, so what are my unique gadgets of goodness?

Laughter: I love comedy in books, movies and people. Relaxation: I know it is more common for me to be sprawled on the floor, than sitting proper on the lounge. Activity: I walk regularly and like to stay fit. Creativity: Other than my obvious passion for WRITING, I enjoy completing jigsaw puzzles with the grandies, and even get a kick out of the semi-challenging ones for big people – but, I draw the line at straight-edged sides – forget those never-ending puzzles with a thousand pieces of a hundred pictures of the same freaking things. Argh, I dislike those with a passion – that’s not a challenge – that’s torture!

Largeness of spirit: I’m the kinda gal who doesn’t mind a crowd, hamming it up, dining out or gathering friends together. And my little red toolbox would not be complete without a microphone: my gift of encouragement brings such joy to me (& hopefully others). I love public speaking, where I’m motivating people to rise; cheering people on to know who they are and discover their unique giftedness; to draw out strengths in people and to help them come to a place of love, joy and happy vibes.

As the embers burn low in the fire, his mummy returns to gather into her arms, her precious son and his assortment of gadgets. I pack the rug away into Buzz, with a dreamy smile on my dial and I’m all warm and fuzzy inside.