Today is my oldest granddaughter’s birthday. She is 16 and I am 66. I was 50 when she was born so for 2 months we are 50 years apart exactly, until my birthday and I move ahead. It has been something we have shared throughout the years. She looks exactly like her mother. Sometimes when she is far away, I cannot tell the difference. It’s disconcerting. Once she is close enough, and I know it’s her, I feel as though the world is right again. I see her mom’s mannerisms, her body type, her hair and even the way she moves her head and walks. I heard the same thing about my daughter when she was a young woman. She talked like me, looked like me, walked like me and we had the same mannerisms. My granddaughter has been in a PEPs group since she was 2 years old. Parents Education Program. The premise is to bring several families together who live near each other and have the same aged babies. The facilitator takes them through all the things that new parents have trouble with and answers questions, gives support. After 12 weeks, she goes away and the group either disbands or continues on their own. Her group has continued on – every week – for 16 years. It has decreased from 6 families to 3. But, those 3 have met continuously and each family has had another child of a similar age. The kids have a phone chat that they use almost daily. All their milestones occur at the same time. They have each been taking driver’s ed and hope to pass the test. Today, on her birthday, she took her test and did pass, but too late for the license. We tried. My daughter called me to grab the passport and birth certificate from the house and meet them at the department of licensing so we could meet there before 5pm. We were 3 minutes too late. Oh well. The important part is that her mother and grandmother both did everything they could to get her that license. We all knew it was impossible. The excitement of going for it was clearly the intent. Tonight, all the PEPs kids and parents and godparent and grandparent, met for dinner. I have made something for all 6 of these children every year. I found pictures of their 3rd birthday party and I had given them each a Raggedy Ann type of doll that looked like each one. Today, I brought a Sweet sixteen balloon for each of the three girls, with a tiara attached. I made a card with a photo of that 3rd year birthday for reference of how much they have grown. In researching what was the significance of 16 candles, I found some interesting numerology points. So, I wrote them out on the card and gave them each 16 candles. It was heartwarming to see these kids wearing their tiaras and excitedly discussing the driving tests. I love this age. It is the in-between time. My granddaughter died her hair red, cut bangs and put on stylized makeup. She aged 5 years in one day. Amazing. For her present, I made her a book of her dog. I painted the pictures and wrote the story line. She loved the book and made my day by saying, “Nana makes the best presents”. I thought I had gotten used to the joy that my own children brought to me, but it turns out that I get to have all this joy again with grandchildren. It was hard to raise three children. I wasn’t always that fun, but we did go on adventures. The responsibilities were overwhelming. Now, I have no responsibilities and I get to enjoy the grandchildren, care free. I can foresee the future of great grandchildren. I hope I am never too used to the changes of a child into adulthood.