Grumpy the Gator

In Grumpy the Gator, a group of children playing encounter a grumpy alligator. The story teaches children to always keep a safe distance from animals in the wild, and to find an adult if they see an alligator.

Grumpy the Gator

Its Always A Story With The Hendersons

Beach Buddies and Mermaids

“What is your name? How old are you? I’m six.”
“I’m six, too. I go to school. What grade are you in? My Mama says I can’t go too far in the water.”
“Did you know I am a mermaid?”

I stood at the edge of the ocean. Waves rolled water in and out bringing warmth and sand to my feet. The back of my sun hat slapped against my neck as strong breezes rolled across the ocean. A string kept the hat from escaping and flying across the beach and into the ocean.

Some of our family had decided to have an afternoon at a local beach. Time to let the children run and play in the sand and splash in the water. The adults stood laser focused on each child while watching for rushing water and any need for help. Sometimes sand or water gets in the eyes and the young ones need assistance in cleaning their face.

On this particular afternoon the children in our family played, giggled, hid their feet under the sand, looked for sea shells, and watched for dolphins. As the fun continued, I noticed a young girl moving closer and closer to our family.
This girl watched us and began smiling. After running back to the blanket where her parents were sitting, she rushed back to begin talking with us.

The questions and comments came pouring out of her mouth. She was six. Her Mama said it was okay to talk to us. Her Mama was on the blanket “up there” and she pointed to her family. She told the children in our family her name, age, and asked if they knew she was a mermaid.
Giggles, jumping waves, and sharing beach toys quickly became fun activities.

As I stood and watched the children, I noticed their ease of chatting, laughing and sharing toys. The conversation went from one topic to another. No fussing. No arguing. Just good summertime fun with new friends.

The warmth of sunshine and the ease of new friendships brought a smile to my face. I began thinking of how often we take for granted the simple things in life. Times are stressful and become more busy with each passing moment.
Yet, here on this Sunday afternoon, children who had never met and may never see each other again, began playing and chatting like they were best friends.
They shared toys, giggles, and stories. Some stories were true and some were “made up”.

I hope that I will always be open and ready to enjoy time with new and not so new friends. These children reminded me of the love God has for each of His children.
These young ones had a major impact on me that day.
I’m still smiling thinking about the joy of being with the group and watching them enjoy the wonders of life. The children became “beach buddies” for the day.

Have you played in the sand lately? Have you visited the beach recently? What makes you smile?

Blessings, sand, and giggles,
Melissa Henderson aka Mimi

  • JD Wininger
    Posted at 10:35h, 07 September Reply

    Oh My Goodness Ms. Melissa. So much to love about this post ma’am. Remember how it was to simply greet someone with a smile and make a new friend? No pretense, no need to pontificate on world events or solve the world’s problems. Just greet one another with an expectation of friendship and finding common interests. Simply accept one another for who we are, not what we have or what we’re worth, or what I can get from you. I think that’s how God wants us to live isn’t it? Thank you so much for giving me a little reminder of what freedom tastes like my friend. God’s blessings.

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 12:27h, 07 September Reply

      Amen J.D. I agree with you. Thank you so much for your kind comments. I pray we all show God’s love to each other today and every day. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Jill Weatherholt
    Posted at 13:39h, 07 September Reply

    What a beautiful story, Melissa. We can learn so much from children. Thank you for sharing this blessing.❤️

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 14:05h, 07 September Reply

      Thank you Jill. I love the lessons we can learn from the young ones. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • karenruhl
    Posted at 13:56h, 07 September Reply

    Hi Melissa, what a sweet story. We need another beach trip! I love how children are free to talk to other kids, most of them just want to play and have fun. I hope the story about the little girl being a mermaid is real – how fun to meet one in person. 😉

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 14:06h, 07 September Reply

      Thank you Karen. The young girl was so sweet. I wonder if she really is a mermaid. The young ones in our group believed her. haha! Yes, come to the beach soon. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Nancy E. Head
    Posted at 14:12h, 07 September Reply

    You are so right, Melissa. It’s the little moments of life that can bring such joy. We have to work to not overlook them. I hope I never forget that my dog was so upset about me leaving for work today that she jumped into the drivers seat and wouldn’t get out of the car without my husband pulling and pushing. Just a simple moment to smile over.

    These simple moments make life so rich. Thanks and God bless!

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 14:27h, 07 September Reply

      What a sweet dog! She was showing her love for you. Yes, the simple moments can bring the best smiles. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Jessica Brodie
    Posted at 17:04h, 07 September Reply

    I love how easily kids make friends. We should still be making friends and enjoying life in this way! Thanks for the reminder and the inspiration. God bless you, Melissa!

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 20:28h, 07 September Reply

      Thank you Jessica. Children can teach adults many wonderful lessons. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Yvonne Morgan
    Posted at 17:13h, 07 September Reply

    We all need to enjoy such wonderful little moments in life. Thanks for sharing this beautiful story.

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 20:29h, 07 September Reply

      Thank you Yvonne. I agree. We all need to enjoy the little moments. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • dscales24
    Posted at 17:16h, 07 September Reply

    Beautiful story, Melissa, and a reminder to cherish the small pleasures every day!

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 20:29h, 07 September Reply

      Thank you so much. Yes, cherish the small pleasures God provides each day. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Ava Pennington
    Posted at 18:39h, 07 September Reply

    Reminds me of what Jesus said about entering heaven as a little child. No pretense, no self-absorption, just an openness to the relationship being offered.

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 20:30h, 07 September Reply

      Amen Ava. Thank you for this reminder about Jesus and the children. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Janet from FL
    Posted at 20:31h, 07 September Reply

    Sounds like such a fun beach day with family! One thing I love about the beach is watching kids play. It doesn’t matter if they are grandkids or strangers. They always make me smile and laugh!

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 22:01h, 07 September Reply

      Thank you Janet. Yes, a fun day listening and watching the young ones. Their energy and imagination inspire me. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Kathleen Barrett
    Posted at 23:57h, 07 September Reply

    Enjoyed this post very much. I have five grandchildren. I could picture the two youngest laughing and romping on the beach making new friends. Sweet summer fun! Precious children. Loving Savior.

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 15:18h, 08 September Reply

      Thank you Kathleen. Five grandchildren! How wonderful! We have two. Yes, precious children. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • laurabartnick
    Posted at 00:08h, 08 September Reply

    Very sweet story, Mimi. I felt myself relaxing as if I was next to you on a beach blanket on the sand, listening to the sweet little girl’s conversation. Thank you.

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 15:17h, 08 September Reply

      Thank you so much Laura. The young ones are truly blessings. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Lynn J Simpson
    Posted at 13:42h, 08 September Reply

    I’d say I haven’t played a lot in the sand lately! I love the ease that children accept one another. May I grow to more to have an open heart like a child (as Jesus calls us to be like too).

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 14:24h, 08 September Reply

      Amen. Lynn, I agree with you. I pray I will have an open heart like a child. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • ordinarilyextraordinarymom
    Posted at 14:12h, 08 September Reply

    Children often show us the simplicity and beauty of life in the most unexpected moments.

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 14:25h, 08 September Reply

      Yes, we can learn wonderful things from children. Their simplicity and innocence are amazing. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • June Foster
    Posted at 14:27h, 08 September Reply

    Lisa, I love the way you take time to enjoy the simple things in our world. Your posts are like a breath of fresh air.

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 15:16h, 08 September Reply

      Thank you June. No one has ever called me Lisa, but, I like it. haha! You are so sweet! Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Karen Jurgens Harrison
    Posted at 05:36h, 10 September Reply

    I love this, Mimi. I remember those kinds of days! Even as an adult, I recall the ease with which passengers spoke to one another in fun conversations on airplanes and while waiting at airport gates. I grew used to overhearing businessmen chat openly about money and investment strategies to pass the time. Of course, that was back in the days before cell phones and the internet! Now heads are buried and eyes focused on a hand-held screen. I miss those sweet days of innocent trust, but I’m encouraged to hear your story of the children sharing and becoming beach buddies. Isn’t childhood wonderful! Sending you love and blessings xoxo

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 12:47h, 10 September Reply

      Thank you Karen. I was truly encouraged by these young people. I agree with you. Too many heads buried and eyes focused on the screens. We are missing opportunities to share His love when we don’t engage with others. Have a blessed weekend! 🙂

  • Diana Derringer
    Posted at 00:13h, 14 September Reply

    What a wonderful experience and lesson that goes with it. Thank you.

    • mimionlife
      Posted at 13:00h, 14 September Reply

      Thank you Diana. Yes, a wonderful experience and lesson. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Jeanne Takenaka
    Posted at 20:55h, 22 September Reply

    Melissa, I loved this. Thanks for the reminder to be open to unexpected encounters and to remember the joy of digging my toes into the sand. I actually spent a little time at the beach last month when we visited Hawaii for a memorial service. I needed the peace of the sand beneath my feet, the ocean breezes, the sunshine on my skin, and the sounds of children’s laughter carrying on the breeze.

    • Melissa Henderson
      Posted at 12:37h, 23 September Reply

      I love the feeling of digging my toes in the sand. We’ve moved from VA to SC and love the beach. Have a blessed day! 🙂

  • Anna Smit
    Posted at 07:48h, 10 October Reply

    Loving reading your stories, Melissa. Took me a while to find your new site (via your Amazon author account), but it was fun reading on your old blog too. I loved the story about the coins.

    Yes: kids do make friends so easily. I still remember being introduced to the Little Mermaid at a sleep over at my Aunt and Uncle’s the year we moved back to New Zealand from Germany. Sweet memories with my sister, being spoilt by our Aunty, after almost 6 years without family nearby. Thank you for reminding me of that special evening.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 13:40h, 11 October Reply

      Thank you so much Anna. I’m not sure why the old blog is showing up, but that’s okay. I love to read comments there, too. 🙂 Have a blessed week! 🙂

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