It’s Marriage Monday over with e-Mom of Chrysalis.
July’s topic, “Blessing Our Parents” taps into the joys of extended family. How are we incorporating the older generation into our married lives in healthy ways?
Of the topic choices, I selected: • Long-Distance Grand-parenting: What Works for Us
If you are a blogger, please join in the fun. If you are not a blogger, oh please, share with me your experience in the comments here. Hugs.
The Candy Break
My parents were both born in a small town in the flat lands of Colorado where farming was a way of life. Small towns dot the highway about every 30 miles where farmers buy tools and parts and sell their crops. My mom and dad moved from their small town to the big city right out of high school but my grandparents lived most of their lives in the same place.
My grandparents were, Nan and Elmer Parks. Grandma and Papa to this tow headed kid and my siblings. They were my mother’s parents and they passed away within the last ten years. I miss them terribly but longingly await our reunion in heaven.
We never lived close to our grandparents yet the bond of love we shared with them would lead you to believe they resided next door to us all of our lives. You see, Grandma and Papa put forth the effort to love us grandkids from a far and build lasting relationships with us that still tug on my heartstrings today at the age of 50. How did they do it?
Every summer Mom packed up the car and we drove most of the day to reach Grandma and Papa’s house. Trips to grandmas were the only vacations my parents could afford for most of our young childhood.
We usually arrived at the front door as dusk settled around us. We kids, would yawn ourselves awake and then scramble for the house. The door would fly open and loud voices of welcome would shout, filling the entire house with laughter and excitement. We were treated like little princesses and a little prince arriving home to our long lost castle.
This was only the beginning of a few weeks of summer bliss in the life of three ordinary kids. The next day was always special.
Papa worked in bookkeeping and kept a home office. Around 10 o’clock in the morning he would emerge from his office and announce in his exuberant and chuckling voice, “It’s time for a candy break.” This time of day was normally a coffee break for him and his office assistant but on the first day with the grandkids, it became a “Candy Break Day.”
He would load us kids into his Ford Bronco and escort us into this tiny little shop that served as a local candy store, ice cream parlor, and gas station. Behind the counter from floor to ceiling was every sort of individually wrapped candy you could imagine. Gum balls and suckers, candy cigarettes and Hot Tamales, waxed lips and jawbreakers.
My brother, sister, and I would quickly shuffle in and stare in wonder. I felt like Charlie in the movie, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, when Charlie steps into the Garden of Eden of candy.
Our eyes boggled.
Next, Papa would boisterously greet his friend behind the counter, ask for three brown bags, and then hand a bag to each of us. Papa stooped down to our height and said to three overwhelmed kids, “fill’em up!”
We would start pointing, talking, then giggle, and hug Papa’s neck all at the same time. The poor guy behind the counter didn’t know what to think. There was no limit and three little kids who rarely got this kind of spoiled, picked out anything and everything our hearts desired.
We sucked, slurped, and licked candy into the twilight hours and later that night, have a tummy ache.
Yes, all was right with the world…….
These are only a few of the purposeful efforts my grandparents put forth to show love to their grandkids who lived too far away. I have a million more stories I could share and likely will…… on another day.
This legacy of love didn’t stop with my grandparent’s generation. My mother, who also resides several states away from her grandkids, puts forth the same effort to remain close and connected to her grandkids. Packages arrive in the mail for every holiday. I mean every….. single….. one plus some which aren’t official. Phone calls every Sunday come rain or shine. Notes and candy. She makes every effort and I assure you that her grandkids, my son and daughter, love and know their Grandma Sue.
One thing I know for certain, God is in the midst of this kind of legacy. My grandparents, my mom and me, we love Jesus. And more than anything we want the next generation to love Him too.
So now, it’s my turn to step into this legacy. I am looking forward to grandkids in my future and you know what? You can bet that there is a “Candy Break Day” waiting for each of them.
Be blessed, Lynn