Wednesday, May 09, 2007



The above pictures are of my maternal grandparents. They are in their early 90's. On a side note, they used to cut a rug like Astaire and Rogers...Dancing with the Stars had nothing on my grandparents! (AND, I wanted to add that Jason's maternal grandpa is in his early 80's and he rides his bike between 5-7 miles a day! So, if you came here seeking aerobic encouragement, it doesn't get any better than that...) So, ANYWAY, last night while I was trying to sleep, my brain decided otherwise and I laid in bed until at least 2:30 pondering life, praying for everything under the sun and trying to answer the random questions that kept popping into my head. SOOOO, here's the question I wondered about the most...How many of you still have your great grandparents around, AND, does anyone out there still have great-great grandparents living? I know it's pushing it, but I just have to know since I lost so much sleep over it last night! I suppose there has to be someone out there with great-greats...perhaps they were quite young when they started their families?

It's this kind of history that intrigues me. I love asking my grandparents questions about when they were kids or their early years of dating and marriage. I value people's stories and life experiences. When I ask my gramps questions about days gone by, I can see his eyes glimmer a little at the visions of memories running through his head. If, for some reason, Jesus doesn't return by the time I'm a gramma, I pray that my grandkids see that same glimmer in my eyes as I recall this wild adventure called life walking with Christ.

36 comments:

  1. My husband has a great-grandmother still living (my kiddos great great grandmother). We have an awesome picture of five generations of women all sitting together.

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  2. Adrienne,
    I never knew my great-grandparents, but my parents are actually raising their great-grandchildren. (In fact, they adopted them this year after being their foster parents for three years.) They are in their early 70s, and the kids range from ages 3 to 12. It's quite something, and I admire them so much. I think these kids are so lucky...they just don't know it yet.
    I guess I responded because I really resonated with your thoughts about the history from your grandparents. I interviewed my grandma for a high school class, and I found out some incredible things. She was the first woman manager at the company she worked at. Her brother was a POW, and her first husband died of cancer at a very young age (and then she married his brother, because she thought that was the "right thing to do" to stay in the family!). She was an amazing woman, so full of life and energy. And, she was an incredible woman of faith. I learned a great deal from her and attribute much of my deep-rooted faith to the time I spent with her. (I was so fortunate she was my primary babysitter growing up.) Sadly, Alzheimers eventually took over her mind, and robbed her of life as she (and we) knew it. What a devastating disease. My kid's paternal grandma was just diagnosed with Alzheimers also. I encourage all of you reading to gain insight from your grandparents, great-grandparents, etc. while you can. They will undoubtedly leave you a history richer than you can ever imagine. Write it down and save it for your kids. Or, better yet, encourage your kids to do that. They will be blessed beyond measure.
    Adrienne, thanks for helping to bring back some wonderful memories. Too often I remember my grandma's ending years rather than the incredible woman she was so much of her life.

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  3. I still have my grandma thank God! She's 80 years old and feisty as ever! LOL She only lives a block from me and I see her every single day! I love her so very much. She pretty much raised me since I was a baby. I remember being with her all the time as a child and teenager. She taught my siblings and I soooo many things about life and how she grew up. I could write a book on her life it's so interesting and exciting. Just yesterday we were talking about how she was raised up very poor but never went hungry because she was taught how to live off the land and never wasted anything. I was so intrigued as I listened to her speak about her life and how she put her little shoes outside her little shack of a home as she described it, and expected Santa to fill her shoes with small toys, well when she awoke in the morning,the only thing in her shoes was rain. Her parents and siblings were killed in a train accident when she was only 7 years old so she was alone for a very long time until her aunt sent for her to come to Texas. Life didn't get much easier for her then either but anyways, she just laughed about the Santa/shoes story and always remembered when she had kids, that would never happen to them and it never did!! She's just wonderful!! I could tell that she was thrilled to see how into her history I really am. I am currently trying to trace back her ancestors and find out more and more. I am so fortunate to have her here with me and my boys. I feel blessed everyday she's in my life! See I've already written another book on your blog Adrienne, sorry!!LOL Great Topic and one that's close to my heart!

    Love,
    Paula and Family

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  4. You are the spitting image of your gramps!!
    My maternal grandparents are still alive and they, too, can cut a rug.
    I really wish my paternal grandma was still here on earth. She was full of wisdom, humor, and love and was like a grandmother/mother to sooo many. If she were still here, I would sit at her feet for hours and listen to her words of wisdom and of the many stories of her past.

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  5. Megan6:19 AM

    I am 29 and when I was born, I still had 7 out of 8 great-grandparents. Now, I only have one left...my 97 year old great granddaddy...who just bought a brand new car a few weeks ago! He still lives alone, drives and mows his own grass. Growing up, we lived in between them and my paternal grandparents. My parents still live there today...I was the one who moved away! I remember watching him and my great grandma (who died in 1993) jitterbug at weddings and parties...what I wouldn't give to see that one more time! I still have all 4 grandparents living, too. I can't even describe how important it was to have them nearby while growing up!

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  6. tinytwig7:08 AM

    i have my great-grandmother left, so she is my son's great-great! we took a picture of five generations at Christmas-time just after he was born. so much fun!

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  7. Both of my grandmas had passed before I was 6... I was 20 and 36 when my grandfathers passed....However my granfather was 92 when he passed 4 years ago and did have great-greats!

    The Trio that I spend one morning a week with know their great-grandma very well...she is very alert and active, so she knows them too!

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  8. no grandparents left for me. and i miss my grandmother so much. she always had time for us...that's the cool thing about being a grandparent. you have so much less to worry about and you've lived long enough to know taht it isn't worth worrying about anyway- so you just enjoy life and the moment.

    you do look like your grandpa.

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  9. My sister-in-law actually complained to me once about how embarrassing it is on Grandparents Day at school that my niece has 7 people in attendance (including the great grandparents of course). What a silly thing to complain about - it's actually something to celebrate! So, it's the same number for my son and the great grandparents are still fairly active and make great babysitters!

    ps: On a side note, after posting your feet on my blog, I've already had some friends tell me they were inspired and will be taking their family feet photo soon!

    Thanks again!
    Julie
    wwww.emmakatespage.blogspot.com

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  10. I don't have any grandparents left on my side but my husband has a grandmother left (his mom's mom) She is my son's only great grandmother. She's 77 and is the most hip granny I know! The one grandparent I missed the most is my grandmother (mom's mom) We use to call her "Bachi" and I loved her more than anything. We use to sleep at her house every weekend. Saturday night was church (my grandfather, otherwise known as my "Gaggi" (pronounced Jaw-Gee)was an usher and Sunday mornings were Sunday School. Then they would take us back home and they had Sunday dinner at our house. Wow how I miss them! Such great memories of them, I can't wait to see them again one day!

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  11. erika8:04 AM

    I have just one Grandma left, and she is so dear. She's almost 90, so my parents recently told her it's time to stop driving from Florida to PA twice a year! Now she flies. But she still drives around town and goes to daily excercise classes in her little community in FL. She has more energy than I do.

    HER mother, my Great Grandma, died a few years ago. She was 104! So she had some Great-Great Grandkids.

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  12. I knew two of my great-grandmas, and all of my grandparents. My last great-grandma died was I was 15.

    My last living grandma is 80, and we are close. I lived with her for 2 summers in college. My dd talks to her on the phone - I love it!

    The pictures are great - I think it's amazing that you have that type of relationship with your great-grandparents and that Emily knows her great-greats!

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  13. I don't have any great grandparents left. All Craig and I have is his "great" Grandma Arnold. There is nobody like her. I should pay a tribute to her on my blog soon! Cooper had surgery last week to get his tonsils and adnoids out and that night Grandma Arnold brought him over some cars and a book. What a sweet heart. I miss my maternal grandma. We lost her 5 years ago to cancer. She was really a unique woman. Grandparents are wonderul to have around because they always have the time to spoil you and your children! Your grandparents make a really cute couple too!

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  14. My great-grandma died while I was in college and I regret not spending more time with her, asking her questions.

    My grandmother is still alive and she spends lots of time with her great-grands (my kids) and they have a wonderful relationship.

    If I have learned anything over the years, it is to ask questions and write stories down NOW while you have someone to ask. In a few years after they're gone, you will have wished you could remember that story grandpa told about ______, and it is nice to have those things documented. Tape recordings/videos are nice too (but if your grandparents are like mine, they don't "do" technology!)

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  15. I'm older than most of you on this blog, but this brought back wonderful memories of my precious grandma! How I wish I had her here now! I was fortunate to have been able to spend time with my grandparents (at least on my mom's side) but both have passed on now.

    I video taped Grandma's 100th birthday (she lived to be 104) and it is so fun to watch that video!

    Lindsey's suggestion of audio/video records was a great one, and although she's right about the fact that most of our elderly do not use modern technology, may I suggest to all of you to make a special visit to your living grandparents, great-grandparents and (for those of you who are fortunate enough to still have them!!) and set up a video camera, and have your grandparents sit and talk to you about their stories, etc. This will end up being a special treasure for you to pass on to your children. You'll enjoy the visit, and you'll have a memory to keep forever. How I wish I still had the opportunity to do this myself.

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  16. My last grandparent died when I was 18. My husband's last grandparent died when he was 25. We are now 39 and 42...sooo, we haven't had grandparents (let alone great-grandparents) in a very long time. AND, within the last two and a half years both of us have lost our dads, so our kids only have their two grandma's left. When I hear about people who have both parents, grandparents and even some great-grandparents still alive and well I think how BLESSED they are!
    Cherish the time spent with them.

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  17. Beth in Delaware9:14 AM

    I have been very fortunate in my life to know my great-grandmother. She passed when I was 12. My boys are lucky enough to have 4 great-grandparents living (3 on my side and 1 on my husbands side). No great-great grandparents. I also love hearing stories about how they met and fell in love and the baby stories of my parents! It's a piece of my history!

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  18. Anonymous9:27 AM

    I am 30, and I have 3 of my grandparents left. My grandmother was 37 yrs old when I was born, and had had her last child a year before (I have an uncle 1 yr. old than I.) Four of my great-grandparents were alive (on my mother's side) when I was born. My two maternal greats died when I was in elementary school. My paternal greats celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary during my freshman year of college. They were both in perfect health. Two weeks later, my great-grandmother died in her sleep. Her husband, my great-grandfather died 2 weeks later. It was almost as if they were holding on for their big anniversary. Also, both outlived most of their 11! children. That's over 8 years of your life being pregnant.

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  19. Wendy in Texas9:47 AM

    This has brought back so many memories. I don't have any greats still living but my grandmother will celebrate her 89th birthday tomorrow. We are celebrating on Saturday with her 6 children, 13 grandchildren and her 12 great grandchildren. I love asking her questions about our family - like the fact that she and my grandfather eloped and were married over 50 years and that she has never driven a car. When I was pregnant with my son I asked her what some of the names were in our family because I wanted to name my son after someone in the family. Well, she wrote down the whole family tree for me. It was amazing that she remembered and I loved hearing the stories of those people. My father-in-law is researching the family history for my side and my husband's family. I can't wait till he gets done! Thanks for a great trip down memory lane.

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  20. Jenny Freyta10:15 AM

    Hi Adrienne!
    I'm 28 and my maternal grandparents are still alive. My paternal grandmother passed away in 1997 and my paternal grandpa recently passed away in October of 2006. My maternal grandparents live in Texas- and I'm going to see them next week!!! I'm so excited, I've missed them so much, it's been too long since I saw them last! Keep posting, I so enjoy your blogs- every single one.

    Jenny

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  21. Anonymous11:02 AM

    Hey there...my hubby has his great grandmother...She is 96. So, my son has a great-great

    Mary Geeslin

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  22. Adrienne,
    My mom is 87 years old. I was a surprise baby born 14 years after my sister and 18 years after my brother. My mom's mom passed away in 1953 before I was born. My mom's dad died when I was 18. My dad's dad died in 1925 after falling from scaffolding while at work (Daddy was 8). His mom died in 1933. He had to do down and identify the body as she passed while at work (I'm told.) Can you even imagine being 13 years old and having to do something like that?

    On a more plesant note; my dad gave my kids one of the "Grandpa, Tell Me Your Memories" perpetual calendars that he had filled out before he died in 1999. He wrote about going "downtown" and watching the Memorial Day parade; seeing the CIVIL WAR VETERANS riding in the cars. I can hardly wrap my brain around that!

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  23. Anonymous11:48 AM

    My great-grandmother passed away about 15 years ago at the ripe old age of 101. I still remember her telling stories of traveling across country in a covered wagon with her German immigrant parents and then the magnificance of seeing the spaceship travel to the moon. (FYI she died not really sure if they traveled to the moon or if it was a stunt pulled off by Hollywood - what a hoot!) I was always intrigued by the vast changes she lived to witness in her lifetime. Great Grandma was also a notorious pack rat, a "side affect" of living through the great depression. She would always comment how "kids these days are so wasteful" The wisdom that this simple saying of exasperation held - wow! Just a glimpse into the life of one great-grandmother and stories she shared with her great-granddaughter. Sweet dreams Adrienne!

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  24. When I was born I had all four women great-grandparents (maternal and paternal on both sides) alive. I was so very fortunate to know (and remember) them. They have all since passed.

    Now my children have all eight (original) great grandparents alive today! We have really made a point of getting good visits and pictures with them. We know they won't be here forever!

    Ashley

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  25. Anonymous1:10 PM

    you are so blessed Adrienne. I have one grandmother and I regularly get hate mail from her. She was so mean to me when I was a child...I love her so much, but I know she doesn't love me or my children. I just try to keep loving on her in any way I can for Christ's sake.
    And my mother cares nothing for me or my children either, so they really only have my husband's mother. I look forward to being a very different kind of grandma, that's for sure!! :):)

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  26. This has been on my mind lately too, as I am seeing all of my grandparents slowing down. I am 28 and still have my maternal grandmother and paternal grandparents still alive. (Due to remarriage, my kids have 6 great-grandparents that they know and love!)

    I recently did a tribute blog to my grandma who has recently been diagnosed with Alzheimer's. We are kindred spirits and this is incredibly difficult for all of us. (Not to mention, the upcoming move....)

    I cherish their lives, their perspective, their wisdom and their love.

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  27. Kristin1:38 PM

    Adrienne,

    I cannot believe that you asked this question yesterday. I lost my maternal grandmother yesterday, May 9, who was almost 94. This grandparent message was not up yet, but I was feeling very sorry for myself when read your blog (as I do regularly), and I was inspired by your message from the day before. I realized that I should look at this as you do; my Nana - as I called her - was the most devoted Christian in my family. She was such a positive light, and I know that she is rejoicing in heaven now. On the way home from work, I played "Beautiful Day" in honor of you and Noah. I vowed to be thankful for having her as a staple in my life for all of my - ahem - 37 years.

    Then, to see this post from you today...God truly works in amazing ways.

    Love,
    Kristin from DE

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  28. Melody in MN1:44 PM

    Hi Adrienne! It is so neat that Emily can know her great grandparents - what a treat. I never met any great grandparents, and I don't think my husband did either. My dad's parents were gone long before I was ever born, but I have heard many neat stories about them. My mom's parents are both gone now, but I have a step-grandma still living and she's a gem. My mom's dad just recently passed away, a few weeks ago...my Pop...that's what I called him. And his first wife was Grammie. She died when I had just turned 8, but I have great memories of her. I miss my Pop very much, but he was 94 and loved Jesus so dearly, and he is celebrating with Jesus in Heaven now. I saw Pop in November and had the chance to have some really wonderful visits with him. I asked him, "Pop, who was you favorite Bible character?" And he replied, "Abraham, because he walked and talked with God." Just yesterday I was reading to my daughter in her children's Bible, and there was a story about Abraham...and it almost brought tears to my eyes as I remembered my Pop. And he was an example of a man who walked and talked with God. What a blessing. Enjoy those grandparents...they're a treasure! Lots of love...

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  29. I have one grandmother (who’s been battling Alzheimer’s for the last 2+ years) and my husband has no living grandparents. My great grandma died when I was 12 or so – I have very clear & vivd memories of her and I!
    My 12 year old step-son, however, does have his maternal great grandmother still living and just recently (the last year or so?) lost his maternal great, great grandmother. I’ve often pondered how great it is that he’s had them in his life (esp. a great-great grandma!) …so many lessons that can be learned from them!

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  30. caringmom6:58 PM

    http://jrjschrandt.blogspot.com/

    Adrienne......can I please ask you and the readers to pray for this beautiful child....adopted into a loving family and then diagnosed with cancer.........

    This story is breaking my heart.....

    Your grandparents are beautiful!!!!!! What a blessing to have them around.

    Thank you.............J.

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  31. i am 43yrs old and have no grandparents alive. I never knew my paternal grandfather. he died when my father was 9yrs old. My paternal gmom and maternal gfather died in 1975 and 1976 respectively. My maternal gmom lived to be 91yrs old and died in 2001. Her mom, my maternal greatgmom, {i met her a couple of times when i was young...} lived to be 98 or 99. They don't actually know exactly because they didn't keep careful track back then, especially in a rural country like the Dominican Republic where she and my maternal gparents were born and raised. I think having children young in life allows more for generations to be around. That didn't happen for my parents nor for me.

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  32. I have both my grandmothers,My mom's dad-Papaw and I have my mom's grandma-great-granny. So, my son,me,my mom,my grandma, and my great-granny are all still around. How blessed am I?

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  33. Anonymous8:44 AM

    My great-grandfather died last year at the age of 92-93(?). I have 3 children, my sisters have 7 between the two of them - not to mention the other cousins, etc. who hold the claim of him being their "great-great grandfather". When I was born, my great-great grandmother (his mom) was still alive and we have a newspaper clipping regarding the "five generations". I was also lucky enough to have my great-grandmother with us until I was 23 years old (33 now - yikes!).
    A cool story re: my great grandfather regards Muhammad Ali - we live in KY and, back in 1962(?), Mr. Ali was pulled over for speeding in our county. My great grandfather was Judge at that time and we have a handwritten letter signed by Casius Clay "The Next Heavyweight Champion" asking for an extension of his court date, in return for ringside seats at his next fight! Too cool - this was even before he won his fights, or became the famed Muhammad Ali! Just a little history . . . LOL, my kids ask to visit Noah's site all the time!!!

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  34. Cindy in South Dakota11:53 AM

    I have a great grandmother who is still living. She is 96 years old and she is the great great grandmother of my three kids. We have 5 generation pictures for two out of the three kids but were unable to get the third due to her failing health.

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  35. Marianne1:50 PM

    Adrienne,

    I am just so grateful that my children were able to know their grandmother (my mom) and their grandparents on my husband's side. They were also blessed to know my husband's, fathers mother for a brief time. I don't know if they really remember her. I just turned 43 and even my parents are gone. My father in 1987 and my mother in 2000. To all of you with grandparents, great grandparents, and great-great grandparents you are truly blessed.

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  36. I have never posted a comment on your blog, but felt compelled to with this post. I have been reading for a while now though.
    I just thought that it was interesting that you posted this the same day that my paternal grandmother passed away. She went to be with the Lord that morning while I was on my way to work. She was the only grandmother that I had left and we were very close. She would tell me stories all of the time about growing up in the country-I am from Alabama. She and my grandfather had been married 60 years when she passed. (My grandfather is still living).
    Anyway, thanks for this post. It made me think of her all over again and the great times that we shared while I was growing up.

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