About This Book

A parent becomes a new person the day the first grandchild is born. Formerly serious adults become grandparents who dote on their grandchildren. This new book includes the best stories on being a grandparent from past Chicken soup books, representing a new reading experience for even the most devoted Chicken Soup fan. Everyone can understand the special ties between grandparents and grandchildren — the unlimited love, the mutual admiration and unqualified acceptance.

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Five tips for passing on the wisdom of grandparents
Inspired by Chicken Soup for the Soul: Grand and Great by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen and Amy Newmark

Whether your grandchildren call you Granny and Papa, Nana and Pop Pop, or Grandma and Grandpa, the grandparent/grandchild relationship is the same in every family — one of unconditional love and mutual admiration. And just as you passed on wisdom, values, and family traditions to your children, you have that opportunity again with the little ones! Chicken Soup for the Soul: Grand and Great will inspire you to pass on all those lessons, and have a lot of fun doing it. Here are five tips for wise grandparents.

1. Remember that learning goes both ways. As Terri McPherson and her six-year-old granddaughter, Caitlynd, left a Tim Hortons coffee shop, they saw a teenage boy coming in. He had blue spiked hair, a nose piercing, and carried a skateboard under one arm and a basketball under the other. Terri thought the teen had scared her granddaughter. Instead, Caitlynd held open the door for him. Terri was prepared to discuss self-expression and people's differences, but the only thing her granddaughter noticed was that the teen had his arms full. Terri admits it was she who focused more on the teen's looks. "In the future," Terri writes, "I hope to get down on her level and raise my sights."

2. Build confidence. Michele Capriotti's grandmother made everything an adventure. "No matter what we were doing, she turned it into something bigger and brighter than it was," Michele shares. An example was what happened when they crossed over a nearby bridge. Her grandmother talked about the difficult journey beforehand, and then praised Michele and her sister's bravery. Because of this, the girls grew up feeling confident. As adults, they returned to the bridge and were surprised to see it was just a small bridge over a tiny creek. "My grandmother had created another world for us through her storytelling and her imagination," Michele writes, "a world much more intriguing than anything our daily lives offered us."

3. You are a role model for your grandchildren. Although a bit unconventional, Emily Coleman learned a lot about living life from her grandmother. Without Grandma, Emily says, "I never would have learned the basic principles for growing old disgracefully." At the end of holiday meals, for instance, her grandma would announce her work was done, and would then relax as the other ladies cleaned up. Then she'd return to the kitchen to play cards. "Sometimes she'd even smoke a cigar," Emily says. "I knew that I wanted to grow up and be just like her." Now 85, Emily says she's raised a few eyebrows. "It's been a life full of heart and humor and irreverence — just the very kind of legacy I planned so long ago on Grandma's couch."

4. Pass on memories to the next generation. As the oldest grandchild and granddaughter, Carol Spahr inherited her beloved grandmother's wedding ring and a silver necklace after she died. When Carol married a few months later, she wore the ring. But because of how much the necklace meant to Carol's mother, she wore it reluctantly before stowing it in a jewelry box. Decades later, when her first grandchild was born and she was divorcing, Carol put away the wedding ring and put on the necklace. She wore it regularly, fondly remembering her grandmother. Now that first grandchild, also a granddaughter, loves the necklace. Carol says she won't wait until she dies to pass on the legacy. "I will pass her great-great-grandmother's necklace on to her, knowing she, too, will look back on happy, poignant memories," she writes.

5. Take time to play with your grandchildren. At first, Linda Apple resisted her three-year-old grandson Ethan's invite to dig in the dirt. She had a meeting that night and still had to make dinner. But as she watched him through the window, she remembered her tea parties with her own grandmother and the lasting memories they created. "It would be fun to plant seeds and watch them grow with my little grandson," Linda shares. So she stopped what she was doing and went outside to play. "What fun we had that sunny afternoon," she writes. "I learned the important life secret that Mammie always knew: there's always time to play."

For more information on Chicken Soup for the Soul: Grand and Great please visit www.chickensoup.com.

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