Growing old as a grandparent is amazing

This week's Hammertime looks at the joys of growing old as a grandparent.

There is absolutely no doubt that one of the greatest joys that we will have as grandparents is sitting down in a cozy room in the company of our children and grandchildren while sharing the adventures of the week, some past memories and wishes, as well as passing around a few sweet treats. I just love it when they boldly ask us those delicate but delightful questions such as….how old are you, what was it like when you were kids way back then, and on and on..

It is during these precious moments that we sit back, scratch our heads, then begin to share some of our most favourite memories and adventures, while being very careful to stay away from a few deep, dark, and delightful secrets that we will always keep to ourselves. As we lean forward and slowly sip our cup of tea, we will finally get their attention (for a few moments) and then happily reveal that we were indeed born before television, polio shots, Xerox, Frisbees, computers, penicillin, frozen foods, contact lenses, the pill and much more than we can’t remember.

When we were growing up there were no credit cards, ballpoint pens, laser beams, and our modern men had not invented panty hose, dishwashers, air conditioners and clothes dryers. It was in our days back in the 50s, 60s,70s and whatever that grass was mowed, Coke was a cold drink, pot was something our mother’s cooked in, rock music was your grandfather’s favourite lullaby, Aids were helpers in the principal’s office, a chip was a piece of wood, hardware was found in the hardware store, software wasn’t even a word, man hadn’t walked on the moon, and music was much milder. Today we should now be very pleased and proud to share what it was like having fun growing up and somehow managing to ‘survive’ without some of the amazing perks and practises that we have today and here is just a little hint of how it really was way back then..

*Draft dodgers were people who closed their front doors when the evening breeze started.

*We were taught to know the difference between right and wrong and to stand up and take responsibility for our actions.

*Pizza Hut, McDonald’s and instant coffee were unheard of in those days when we thought fast food was what people ate during Lent, and ice-cream cones, phone calls, rides on a bus and Pepsi were all a nickel.

*The term ‘making out’ referred to how you did on your school exam, having a meaningful relationship meant getting along with your cousins, and your grandmother and I got married first, and then lived together.

*We were before gay-rights, computer dating, dual careers, daycare centres and group therapy, and the cardinal rule around the house was that ‘everyone’ should be present on time to sit down at the table for meals. We went outside a lot to get fresh air and find friends, and going to school were among the best days of our lives.

*Our lives were governed by the ‘Ten Commandments’, we were taught to respect our elders, and that serving our country was a privilege, and living here was even a bigger privilege.

*We were yet to hear of FM radios, tape decks, CDs, electric typewriters, yogurt or guys wearing ear-rings and time-sharing meant quality time together with our family, even on the weekends.

*When we went shopping with our parents, and carried the groceries, they actually had 5 and 10 cent stores where some items really cost that much, you could purchase a fancy Chevy Coupe for $600, and gas was only 11 cents a gallon.

Whatever the case, please try to remember that we are not ‘ancient’ and have somehow managed to adjust to the new generation, with your help, but that we will always be there for you, no matter what. Cherish every moment, share the joy, and have a great week, all of you.


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