Teaching the boy to play catch may have been an error in judgment. He throws everything now, gleefully. I'm taking a cue from the only "parenting" book I've read and saying "we don't throw hard/pointy/heavy things. But we can throw the soft ball!" and handing him the ball. Aren't I a superstar?
The book I've been reading, courtesy of sister Deborah, is How to Talk so Kids will Listen and Listen so Kids Will Talk. I really love the techniques and ideas. I can see myself using a lot of them, especially the problem-solving bits.
As I was reading through their examples of how to talk to your kids, I could hear Fredi in every quote. They talk about praising with detail, so the kid will know you really saw/heard what they wanted you to. So when they give you a scarf, you don't say "I love it!" you say "I love these wide red stripes, and the fringe on the end. It's really going to keep me warm on that walk to the bus." That's Fredi, through and through. She was truly interested in everything her grandkids had to say. She listened attentively and heard just what they were trying to say. She did that with all of us. I miss her so much.
The boy is doing great. Careening through life with a big grin, as usual.
How are you?