“Nana, Gran, Mimi, Grandpa, Chief” – the grandparent names are endless. Whatever they are called, there are no such people quite like grandparents.
Grandparents’ Day this year falls on Sunday, September 13. It always falls on the first Sunday after Labor Day and is a day that celebrates the wonderful grandparents out there. A housewife in Fayette County, West Virginia, pioneered the special day to recognize the lonely elderly in nursing homes. She hoped that grandchildren would tap into the wisdom and heritage that their grandparents could provide. President Jimmy Carter proclaimed it an official day in 1978.
Many schools designate a special day to honor the students’ grandparents. Throughout the year, I believe every day should be a day to celebrate grandparents. My three-year-old, Elizabeth, has three amazing grandparents. Her “Jammie” lives in the Upstate and comes to visit for extended periods of time to stay with us. She always likes to see Elizabeth’s school, attend her activities (whether it was our play group when she was smaller or her Little Gym class or swimming lesson) and take her to do fun things. Thanks to modern technology, we can send her pictures of what we are doing and even Face Time with her. It is obvious that Elizabeth prefers spending time with her Jammie opposed to her own parents!
Elizabeth’s “Lizzie” and “Deeds” live here, so she gets to see them a lot! They have been able to attend her school functions and always love a visit from their only grandchild (even if it is impromptu.)
Most of Lizzie and Deeds’ friends already have grandchildren, so they have been generous by giving them cribs, baby gear and other toys that they no longer need in their homes. A grandparent’s home can be a really fun place for a child to visit- with new books and toys and special treats in the kitchen. A favorite gift that was given to my parents when Elizabeth was born was the book by Rebecca Harvin, Always Have Popsicles: How to be the best grandparent and really enjoy your grandchildren. “Never close the door all the way” is a spot-on “tip” as we have noticed that’s her preference when she spends the night with them.
Thanks goodness for these grandparents who can love, play and yes, spoil our children a little bit. We recognize you on September 13 but also on every day of the year.
How do you celebrate grandparents on Grandparents’ Day and everyday?