Roots author Alex Haley once said: “In all of us there is a hunger, marrow-deep, to know our heritage- to know who we are and where we have come from. Without this enriching knowledge, there is a hollow yearning…emptiness, and the most disquieting loneliness.”
For those of you that don’t know, this Sunday is National Grandparent’s Day. I look forward to this day all year because I have a dear relationship with all of my grandparents. As a young child I formed a bond with my Grandmother over pies. Sometimes I feel like I am her twin 60 years later because we have so much in common. She is the mother of 12 children and for most of those year she was home alone with them because my Grandfather was a pilot in the Air Force. She ran a loving but structured home, and always knew where her children were. She also made sure that every night the family sat down at the table and ate dinner together. She loved to sew and bake. My mom said her sewing machine had a permanent location on the dinning room table (just like me, hehe). Unfortunately she died a few years ago and I miss her dearly.
I also have a great relationship with my other Grandmother who bore 5 children and was a proud mother. She always stood up for her children. I really admired that about her. She loved sports especially tennis (my favorite). I grew close to her through letters. We were pen pals all through my college years and beyond. There is something to say for old fashioned hand written letters. So much can be expressed and cherished in a letter. She too has passed away only about a year ago.
Since the passings of my grandmothers I have built a strong relationship with both my grandfathers. Both of them turned 90 this year! Unfortunately they both live in Washington state and I only get to see them once a year. So in order to build a better relationship with them I have found ways to let them know how much I love them and miss them. Letters, packages, pictures, gifts, and phone calls. These are just a few ways to keep in touch. As the world grows and our children grow their family relationships may falter. I have been so blessed in my life to have a relationship with all of my grandparents. We lived close growing up and stayed close after I had grown. I have gained so much wisdom from their experiences and now that I am older I can really appreciate their lives and all they had to overcome. We are generations apart but we still have so much in common and so much to share. Life is short, we only have moments to learn from each other.
This grandparent’s day take some time to share your thoughts and love with your dear family members. Whether it is visiting your own grandparents or helping your children learn more about their own grandparents. Here are some great ideas for kids to create something wonderful for their grandparents found on spoonful.com.
Photo Collage Tray
Pop Culture Photo Card
Life Sized Thank You Note
Mail a Hug
If your grandparents have passed there are still many ways to get to know them. Search for old photos, share stories you have heard, make a family tree, and for older children there are some amazing ancestry websites where they can learn about genealogy and where they come from. Here is a list of the sites that are easy for searching for your family members.
I truly cherish my relationships with my grandparents and I hope my own children can develop similar relationships with theirs.
This post is sponsored by:
The Brett Saks Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, hopes to make our Arizona communities safer for bicyclists by teaching adults and children about road safety and mutual respect between drivers and cyclists in fun and engaging ways. We are “Shifting Gears to Saves Lives,” as more than 600 cyclists are lost each year to car-bike accidents. Learn more at gearupaz.org.