Being a girl from a family of all girls, the idea of paintball would never have entered my mind. I’m not saying that my sisters and I were real prissy, but we weren’t into pain and getting totally dirty either. We were typical girls, who liked dolls and other girl things, when we were little, and while we liked to go camping, we still didn’t want any of the wild creatures of the forest in our camp unless it was a deer or a bird. Then, when Bob and I had children, we had 2 girls too, so I really never had to have much dealings with the kind of stuff boys are into, other than Bob’s love of mechanics, which didn’t really affect me much, unless he needed help on something.

Then came the sons-in-law and the 3 grandsons…and oh boy, what a shock to my rather girly system!! All of the dirt, cars, rough housing, and most recently paintball fighting, are things that have taken some getting used to. I simply can’t imaging choosing to get hit with paintballs. I have seen the bruises the guys have after one of their “friendly” fights, and while I’m no wimp, I think I’ll have to pass when it comes to letting someone shoot paintballs at me and leave me full of bruises. I’m quite sure that fact will come as quite a disappointment to the guys, as I’m sure they would love to have a crack at that fight.

My grandsons are getting better at their shooting skills, but it will take some doing to beat their dad and uncle, I think, and Kevin usually gets the upper hand. Caalab doesn’t get to fight as much as Chris and Josh, since their dad is the one into paintball, but he has fun when he gets to go along. I’m sure my daughter, Corrie has all but given up on the idea of keeping their clothes clean and paint free. I don’t know how well this stuff washes out, but my guess is that it comes out pretty well, but if not, you just make sure to wear old clothes, right. Yep, dirt, paintballs, bruises, and fun…that’s paintball!!

When he first arrived on September 9, 1998, 5 weeks early, Josh had to be flown to Denver because his lungs were under-developed. That was just about the last time Josh would be weak in any way. Josh quickly grew into an eating machine, wanting a treat every time he walked into my house. The first words out of his mouth were, “Treat, Grandma…treat!!” I had to make sure I had granola bars or fruit roll-ups, because that boy was hungry!!! And the really strange thing is that to this day, he can eat and eat, and still be a skinny little kid. Today, Josh is a great big 14 year old boy, but he’s still slim. I don’t know how he does it, but he does!

We went up on the mountain yesterday to celebrate Josh and his dad, my son-in-law, Kevin’s birthday. They wanted to have their party on the mountain. They love to camp, and so Josh couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate his birthday. They have had a great weekend, and in the middle of it, they got to spend time at their favorite pass time…paintball shooting. And to top it off, we brought them another fighter…Caalab!! Kevin, Chris, Caalab, and Josh had a great time hiding and shooting each other. And as for me, I was just glad that I wasn’t involved in the fighting, because I have a feeling I would have not only lost badly, but I’m pretty sure I would have been the prime target, if I know these guys…and I do.

So much has changed since our premature little Josh arrived, but one thing I can tell you without a doubt is that Josh is a fighter. In the beginning he fought for life, in sports he fights to win, as the youngest he fight for equality, and in paintball, he fights to beat his dad, brother, cousin, and anyone else who wants to take a shot at him. True, all his fighting is in the area of sports these days, but as the youngest, I suspect he will be vying for his superiority for a while yet…not that any of the boys or Kevin will mind that so much. They are a competitive bunch, after all. Who will come out the victor over all lies in the future, but that’s ok. The journey will be fun. Happy birthday Josh!! We love you!!

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