Letters from Oupa and Ouma…

30 Aug

IMG_5125.JPG Grandparents play an important role in the life of children. They have so much to offer by just being grandpa and granny (or in our case, Oupa and Ouma, Mamie and Papi).We all have the odd story that our grandma used to tell us, or the special treats they had for us hidden in the secret cupboard. I remember my mamie telling the story of a car being made especially for her, in a unique colour, blue-tomatoe (bleu tomate). It took years and years and years to be made (because of the odd colour, she would explain), only because it was not really being made. I remember the piece of bread with a sugar-cube inside, as well as the special sweets that only my mamie had in her small cupboard. I remember the piggy bank that she would keep for my sister and I and the few francs that she would add every time we would take down the rubbish as we left her flat. I also remember the strange story of the creation of the world where God created the world and sent an angel down, and the angel came back up and said ‘Every one is laughing’. And God would say, well, that’s not good. So God tried again, and that time, the angel came back up and said ‘Every one is crying”. And God would say, well, that’s not good. And He tried again until there was some people crying, some people laughing, some people singing etc… Of course, with hindsight, I realise that this was a really really odd story but as a little girl, I loved hearing it. These are insignificant memories, but they are special to me.

We live in Cape Town and all our kids’ grandparents live far away. I’m very thankful that though they live far away, they are all very involved in their lives one way or another. Whether it is by phone, by web-cam or by plane, mamie, ouma and oupa make every effort to play an active role in our children’ lives.

A month ago, Ouma and Oupa started to write some letters to our children for no particular reasons, and yet for many important reasons. Oupa doesn’t get to see the kids often and decided that writing to them would open up the lines of communication. I think it’s a brilliant idea.The first time, Phillip called the kids to tell them that Oupa had written a letter to them, it was almost like a non-event. But Oupa can write very well, and he writes about interesting things, from the weather in Spring to Shakespeare’s play “The Merchant of Venice”. And as the letters keep coming, I detect a growing attraction in them with an attitude of ‘I wonder what this letter is about…’

Living in the age of technology, these letters are emailed, which means that I can keepsake them 🙂

I hope that many years from now, these letters from Oupa and Ouma will be as sweet a memory for them as the sugar-cube in fresh bread is for me.

Liewe Leanna, Killian en Matteas,

Hier by ons in Springs is dit nog regte winter maar dit reen darem nie. Die bome se blare is almal dood en die gras is ook dood en vaal. Niks is groen nie . Ons kan nie wag vir die lente om te kom nie. Ons hoop julle is nog almal gelukkig en gesond. Ons is baie lief vir julle en verlang baie na julle.

Drukkies en soentjies,

Oupa en Ouma

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4 Responses to “Letters from Oupa and Ouma…”

  1. thekooymans August 31, 2010 at 4:33 pm #

    This is such a great idea and a keepsake for the kids! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  2. Coppa August 31, 2010 at 3:52 pm #

    Quelle bonne idée! Ca forge un lien très fort avec les petits.Ca m’a tout remué que tu te souviennes si bien de ta mamie Mimine comme tu l’appelais.je t’aime très fort ma fille

  3. Marraine August 31, 2010 at 12:02 pm #

    il est dommage que je ne puisse lire la lettre de Oupa et Ouma. Le reste est traduit sauf la lettre. Je pense que c’est parce qu’elle est écrite en afri…Gros bisous

    Marraine

  4. renettepickering August 30, 2010 at 9:10 pm #

    That is so precious. I hope that we’ll remind each other in 30 years’ time to do such sweet things for our grandchildren!

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