26 October 2011

The Joy of Grandparents

In Chapter 10 of Bringing up Boys, Dr. James Dobson talks about how wonderful grandparents are, and we wholeheartedly agree!

I can't tell you how many times throughout the day Mark or Julia will ask for Grandpa Jack, Grandpa Greg, Grandma Judy or Grandma Donna.  We pray for them, we call them on the phone we visit them weekly, and we LOVE spending time with them!

How lucky are we that we not only have our Grandparents but even our Great Gran parents!  We love Great Grandma Corrine, and Great Grandma Sue, Great Grandpa Ted and Great Grandpa Lenny!

Dobson says, "The elderly slow down and stoop over so that they can see things as children once again, so that they can hold the hands of children who toddle along on inexperienced feet.  That bug on the sidewalk, the snail under the cabbage leaf, the robin pulling the worm from the rain-moistened earth--these are the things that small children and their grandparents notice."

I absolutely love seeing my own parents play and water the plants, and go for walks with my children.  They really do things so much differently then when they raised me.  They relax more, they have loosened up, and little spills and dirty hands don't bother them at all.

I guess being a grandparent is such a huge blessing and all they want is as much time and hugs and kisses that they can squeeze in.  They don't have to worry about time schedules, disciplining or fruits and veggies at each meal.  Life with grandmas and grandpas is all about fun in the sun, ice cream and cake, and finding cool bugs and birds outside!

Dobson does say that obviously noone is a perfect parent, and so grandparents as the role model of parenting should expect God to use them in a powerful way.

"Although we all made mistakes raising our children, the good news is that as godly grandparents, walking with the Lord, we can expect the Lord to use us...the Lord is giving us a ministry to help fill in these gaps in our imperfect child rearing."
I've seen this with my own mother who has pulled me aside and given me advice when she sees I'm struggling with a disobedient child.  She always encourages me and tells me what a great job I'm doing, and she gives me insights into the personality that she sees in each of my children.  Sometimes it is really good to see another adults perspective and see your child through their eyes.  My mom would NEVER correct the way I parent, but she would pray for me and give me godly advice one on one.  I really appreciate her love and support and  can trust that she always respects me as the parent.  She knows that ultimately I have the final say, and she always tells my kids, "Go ask your mom first!"  I love that!

I also see how patient my parents are with my kids and it helps me to be more patient too.

They really do have more time to just enjoy the grand kids, and sometimes it teaches me to sit back and relax and enjoy my kids instead of being stressed or worried about their appearance or constant good behavior, because kids will be kids and you can never predict what they will do from one moment to the next!

Dobson says, "But most of all, we support, we listen, we pray.  And we love."  And Grandparents are great at doing these things!
And let's face it, I trust the grandparents over anyone to watch my children, they are our safe net and our family and my children feel really comfortable in their homes, they feel safe, secure, and extremely loved!

 And let's not forget how Grandparents are always willing to listen and support our children when they do amazing things (like Gymnastics recitals).  Now a days Julia will say, "Mom, I want to call Grandma on the phone, I want to talk to her."  Julia and Mark know Grandma and Grandpa always have time to talk and to listen, and don't we ALL need that?

My mom always seems to know Julia's love language too.  She's always asking about school, or awana, or what she learned today, and Julia can't stop talking about those things!  I also love how Grandma Judy and Grandma Donna always compliment Julia and Mark on things that I sometimes forget about, like how they look, or a picture they colored, or how well behaved they sat.  I think it really helps their self esteem.

And Grandparents are also awesome because at the drop of a hat they will step in to babysit or help plan a party, or buy something for the grandkids, and that shows all of us love, because they give of their time and money, and it means so much.

Grandpa Jack helped us during Mark's birthday party to do all of the relays and games we planned on the mat and the highlight of the birthday party was Grandpa Jack's tug of war game!  He was a real hit!

There is a place where I like to hide.There is a place with love inside.It's my Nana's garden.When it's all quiet I just stand stilland listen to the trees and whipperwhillThere is a place where I like to hide.There is a place with love inside.It's my Nana's garden.It's my Nana's garden.

By Christina (age 9)

To all you wonderful Grandparents out there, thank you, thank you for blessing us with your time, love and support.  We can never repay you or thank you enough!



  1. That was so beautiful, Kristi! I hope I am a Grandmother like that! When I was born, I only had one grandmother, all of my other grandparents had already died. I had forged such a great relationship with my Grandmother. I could ride my bike or walk to her house and she was always ready to listen to whatever was on my mind. I remember feeling really special when I was with her. She taught me so much! She always had the best advice, seasoned by the years. She brought a different perspective into my life and I will be forever thankful to God for having given her to me and allowing me to spend a lot of time with her.

  2. Clare that is so true! I remember my special moments with both sets of my grandparents too. My Grandma Corrine and I would always wake up early to have tea and toast with cinnamon and sugar and we would read the Bible together. And I used to visit my Dad's parents in Staten Island and just hang out with them and they would love to show me pictures of my Dad when he was little. Good times!


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