loader from loading.io

Recollections 5

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

Release Date: 10/19/2020

The Power of Story, Part 3 show art The Power of Story, Part 3

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

Emily wraps up the third episode on "the power of stories" with a chat with an executive from Scholastic, Inc.--the source of all those books sold to grade-school students from newsletters and book fairs. Their conversation took place just before World Read-Aloud Day, which framed their talk about grandparents reading aloud to their grands. THE STRETCH IT TAKES (Emily's Essay): The Genetics of Reading   When I visited the home of my maternal grandparents, I don’t remember seeing a book in any room of the house. It was a stark contrast to our own house with books in each room and a...

info_outline
The Power of Story, Part 2 show art The Power of Story, Part 2

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

Continuing the theme from last episode, Emily speaks with a 93-year-old grandfather, author, and active advocate of capturing and then "unleashing" grandparent stories. His creative partner in their website adds helpful details about a program that helps grands become powerful and prolific story-makers. SHOW NOTES Jerry and Deanna's website is grandparentsunleashed.com, and  Jerry's book is The Grandest Love, available .

info_outline
The Power of Story, Part 1 show art The Power of Story, Part 1

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

How well do your grands know your story? Emily travels (virtually) to Trinidad to speak with Felicia Chang, a professional in the area of capturing the personal stories of our families, with a special emphasis our elders. Your story has worth and power...and is of priceless value to your grands. EPISODE NOTES Felicia Chang's TEDx Talk about how the stories of our loved ones connect us all is . Her business has a and a . This is Felicia with her dear grandmother, the subject of her movie and the inspiration of her view on capturing stories.

info_outline
Distance/Global Grandparenting, Part 2 show art Distance/Global Grandparenting, Part 2

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

Continuing last episode's theme, this time Emily talks with a grandparent in the US and a parent in France whose extended relationships span oceans, languages, and cultures. Adventure seasoned with selflessness is the recipe. THE STRETCH IT TAKES (Emily's essay)   “We’re moving to Brussels.” Those words shocked me even though I was twenty-one, living in my own apartment and working on my graduate degree. My parents called from NH to inform me that my dad had taken a job in Belgium. “Where is that?” was my immediate reply. (I was in grad school for English Lit, and obviously...

info_outline
Distance/Global Grandparenting, Part 1 show art Distance/Global Grandparenting, Part 1

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

Back in Season 2, we did an episode on Long-Distance Grandparenting which proved to be a popular subject. When the distances are really long--international--you'd think it would be harder. The pandemic has made distance less of a factor that it once was, so experienced global grandparents can teach lessons almost all of us can apply. EPISODE SHOW NOTES Learn more about Emily's guest, author Helen Ellis, at https://www.distancefamilies.com. Her book will be out in April, 2021. 

info_outline
Grandparent Educators, Part 2 show art Grandparent Educators, Part 2

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

Some grandparents have the time, talent, and access to become directly involved with their grands' education. Emily talks with two grandparents and a teacher who have done or seen this firsthand, which may give you ideas on how to approach this in your extended family. SHOW NOTE Learn more about Emily's third guest, Sandra Williams, from her and her book, .  

info_outline
Grandparent Educators, Part 1 show art Grandparent Educators, Part 1

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

Grandparents can play a range of roles in their grands' education. In Part 1 on this topic, Emily talks with a retired teacher whose journey through racial segregation in the 1950s shaped her commitment to supporting the schooling of her descendants. Emily's essay is a revealing self-portrait of a third grader, a pen pal, and a missed opportunity Emily's guest Kaaren Rodman provides details on her family's scholarship: "Our family has set up a scholarship that is awarded through the Indianapolis Urban League. Mike and I did smaller grants for several years in the 90's, one for each set of...

info_outline
Grandparent Love, Part 2 show art Grandparent Love, Part 2

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

The centerpiece of this episode is Emily's interview with best-selling author Barbara Graham, who has written about the collected experiences of gifted and famous grandmothers. There are lessons to be learned from her work... and from Emily's essay about loving our grands well with the time we find. Learn more about Emily's guest and her work at .    The Stretch It Takes: Competing With Time (Emily's Essay)   If there’s one thing that this pandemic has taught me, it’s that time looks and feels different to different people, depending on their age and their...

info_outline
Grandparent Love, Part 1 show art Grandparent Love, Part 1

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

To begin Season 4, Emily talks with two members of her network on how to put our love for our grands into action--with purpose, and intentionality, and clever ideas.  The payoff is a richer relationship, even when it's largely a long-distance one. To learn more about our two guests visit and .         

info_outline
Spotlight on Emily show art Spotlight on Emily

The Grand Life: Wholehearted Grandparenting

While we take a break between seasons of The Grand Life Podcast, we're inviting host Emily Morgan to the guest's chair for a change. With husband and producer Mike, she covers choosing content, finding guests, and balancing the living of The Grand Life with her podcasting about it.

info_outline
 
More Episodes

What hobbies have you embraced that your grandchildren will remember, or perhaps adopted themselves? Emily presents a mash-up of recollections from her Season 3 guests who remember the hobbies of their own grandparents, Plus, a bonus interview with a super-fun grandma from Georgia and her wild-and-crazy grandkid camp. Listener advisory: there are fart noises.

The Stretch It Takes (Emily's Essay): I Do Have One

I recently watched a movie where a young woman was given a to-do list by her therapist...a list to help her grow as a person. It included, among other things, “do something you loved doing as a child” something, her therapist said, that was a source of joy. In the movie, the woman chose drinking a Cherry Soda. Pretty simple, but it made her very happy.  I started to wonder: what would that be for me? Maybe getting back in touch with my first grade self might actually help me find my hobby. You see...I’ve struggled finding one. I play the piano, but haven’t for a long while. I read books, I like to cook, and I sometimes like to garden. I definitely love decorating my house (but that feels more like an addiction than a hobby). 

In the first season of The Grand Life podcast, I had a segment called “Passing Along Your Passion.” I would interview people about their hobbies, and I got so many good responses...sewing, horseback riding, music...you name it. I started thinking...what kind of passion am I passing along to my grands? What do they see me enjoying and feeling passionate about besides them? Don’t get me wrong, I definitely have no problem admitting that I’m passionate about my grands...but I would like to give them a fuller picture of me. A picture that includes something I like, something I do for myself, something that gives me great joy. 

Heading back to my first grade self, I liked two things: writing and pretending to host a talk show. Yes...that’s what I did. And oh, yes, I also like fudgsicles. 

So there you have it. My passion has been here all along. I’m realizing that my six-year-old self isn’t so different from my 60-year-old self. I still love writing, and I love talking to people on this podcast. I have always wanted a radio show. I vividly remember as an 8-year-old sitting in a circle at Grace Baptist Church in Tonawanda NY when my Sunday School teacher, Mrs. Sears, asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I said I wanted to host a TV talk show like Merv Griffin, Mike Douglas, and Dinah Shore. She recoiled and asked me if I could think of something different. I really couldn’t, but I regrouped and said I wanted to be a mother. Mrs. Sears reported, sternly, to my mother that I wanted to be on TV and perhaps that instead of a worthy goal I had chosen a worldy one. Fortunately, my mother took my side on the matter, laughed it off, and later told me not to worry about disappointing Mrs. Sears.  

I guess I knew myself pretty well. What I told Mrs. Sears proved to be true. I love being a mother (and now a grandmother), a writer and now a podcast host, so I suppose it wasn’t much of a stretch after all. I think the hardest thing for me was realizing that what I love doesn’t really fit the traditional definition of a hobby. In my own definition, though, it works just fine.  Writing and hosting a podcast is an extension of myself: it gives me joy, and it’s something that my grands can even participate in with me (if you listen to the end of each episode, you’ll hear their voices). 

So what’s your hobby? What have you found to be the thing that brings you joy and is the obvious extension of yourself? If you don’t have anything like that, maybe a good long stretch is in order. As our own adult children would say, “you do you.” It’s never too late to start doing something that brings a new sort of fullness to your life. And the possibilities are endless. It can be as simple as drinking a Cherry Soda and as complicated as volunteering or developing an interest you had way back when you were six years old. 

Or, maybe, sitting on the porch enjoying a good fudgsicle will do the trick.

(c) 2020 Emily Morgan