How Benjamin rolls! Plus, GRAND Social No. 342 link party for grandparents

How Benjamin rolls! Plus, GRAND Social No. 342 link party for grandparents

How Benjamin rolls!

Saturday was Jim’s birthday, and Brianna and Patrick arranged a family gathering at a new burger spot in town in recognition of burgers being Jim’s forever favorite food.

It was great to have all our local immediate family in attendance.

Kudos to Tyler for managing to get a shot that included everyone at the table!

While we were all gathered together to celebrate Jim, we soon were raucously regaling Benjamin for a milestone move made right before our eyes.

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Grandma Christmas crafts matter

Grandma Christmas crafts matter

The year my husband and I were married, his stepmom, Diane, whom I had never met and Jim hadn’t seen in years, sent us a lovely joint Christmas stocking she had made for us. She also sent an adorable handmade one for baby Brianna, who was born soon after we married.

Diane sent another precious stocking the following year, when Megan was born. And another two years after that for our baby Andie.

When Megan and Preston married and…

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Grand greetings! Plus, GRAND Social No. 331 link party for grandparents

Grand greetings! Plus, GRAND Social No. 331 link party for grandparents

Grand greetings!

When my daughter Megan sends out her annual Christmas cards, she typically catches up on sharing photos of Brayden, Camden, and Declan she’s not gotten around to sending earlier in the year. Sweet stuff like these school pictures and sports shots enclosed with this year’s card:

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Flashback: Everyday inspiration

Flashback: Everyday inspiration

I'm not a world-traveler who finds inspiration in ancient ruins, artful masterpieces, or in architectural—or natural—wonders.

I'm also not one of the fortunate few privileged to find inspiration in luculent discourse with the likes of Maya Angelou or other great orators of our time. (Although I have heard in person the likes of Kurt Vonnegut. And David Sedaris. More than once.)

No, I don't get my inspiration from such high-brow—and high-cost—pleasures. Yet.

Instead, I find inspiration—the impetus to be bigger, better, and more than I am—in everyday things. Things such as…

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Happy birthday, baby! Plus, GRAND Social No. 310 link party for grandparents

Happy birthday, baby! Plus, GRAND Social No. 310 link party for grandparents

Happy birthday, baby!

My baby girl—Andrea—is 33 years old today!

Thankfully, considering Colorado’s current heat wave, a birthday cake isn't all that important at 33, and Andrea settled instead for a cookie. A cookie that, in fact, was one of those included in the recent Gramma in a Box package I received for review.

On Saturday, Andrea helped me review the July sample subscription box—meaning, she helped me decorate and create a trio of scrumptious sweets just as lucky grands would do were they on the receiving end of the subscription service—and was perfectly pleased with…

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Flashback: 9 things I've kept 'for the grandkids'

Flashback: 9 things I've kept 'for the grandkids'

Dear readers: This Flashback feature originally appeared on Grandma's Briefs July 22, 2010. Thank you for reading this updated rerun!

My daughters have been grown and gone for quite some time now, but there are a few useful and/or enjoyable things from their childhood that I just can't throw away..

I'm pretty sure—or at least I'm bound and determined—that these items will one day come in handy, that they'll one day provide fun and frivolity for my grandkids.

9 THINGS I'VE KEPT 'FOR THE GRANDKIDS'

1. VHS tapes of children's movies and shows. Space Jam, Fluke, Casper and more. I can't see throwing away tapes I know kids love, but I sure don't plan on replacing them with DVDs or Blu-Ray discs (except for the…

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Grandma challenge: How full can she fill forty-four hours?

Grandma challenge: How full can she fill forty-four hours?

My desert-dwelling grandsons and their parents visited my house last week—for forty-four hours. The family had taken a road trip to Vail for a wedding, and Jim and I were fortunate they fit in a stop at our place on their way back home.

I was thrilled to host them and was determined to squish as much into the visit as possible, unsure of when I'd see Brayden, Camden, and Declan (as well as Megan and Preston, too) again.

As all three boys have birthdays in June…

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Throwback Thursday: Fine lines... worn and walked

Throwback Thursday: Fine lines... worn and walked

This #TBT piece by Lisa Carpenter originally published April 15, 2014 on Grandma's Briefs. Thank you for reading!

As I scan shelf after shelf of beauty aids at the drugstore in search of the perfect product to combat my age spots and wrinkles, I consider the plethora of inescapable fine lines I encounter in this phase of life. Despite the endless number of serums and creams and BB this and AHA that created to (sort of) soothe away the skin issues, I’ve yet to find a solution to the fine lines that matter most: those encountered in my role as a parent to adult children.

Most concerning are the fine lines I walk—that all parents of grown children walk—as I attempt to be wise, supportive, encouraging for my adult children without seeming overbearing, overprotective, overly critical or any other overly state that might tangle the ties that bind me to my dear ones.

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Throwback Thursday: Thoughts on My Daughter's Miscarriage

Throwback Thursday: Thoughts on My Daughter's Miscarriage

This #TBT piece—originally published October 18, 2015 on Purple Clover—underscores the appreciable blessing of my daughter's recent pregnancy announcement. Thank you for reading.

My daughter lost her baby last week. A miscarriage in the first trimester.

Coming from an abundantly fertile family, it's hard to wrap my head around that. My mom had seven children. Three of my sisters had several children, and a number of those kids had kids. I had three children myself, and my middle child had three children, too.

All of us had no problem. Yet it's a problem for my oldest child, Brianna.

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Sunday morning texts! Plus, GRAND Social No. 264 link party for grandparents

Sunday morning texts!

There's nothing quite like Sunday morning texts from beloved kids who have grown and flown.

To wit, the following texts I received Sunday morning from my middle daughter, Megan, mama to my desert-dwelling grandsons:

scorpion text message 

Am I right? Nothing quite like...

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Here and now: July 6, 2017

My life, here and now...

here and now 

On my mind...

July? How the heck can it be July already?

Even how-the-heckier: How can the first week of July already be nearly over?

Reading...

I'm about halfway through Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker. I can't say I love it at this point, but I am intrigued and will continue reading.

Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker

Check it out on Goodreads. And hey, if you're on Goodreads...

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Friday flashback: Coupon queen

In celebration of Mother's Day on Sunday, for this week's Friday flashback feature I chose to share one of my favorite posts about cherished gifts from my girlies. I smile each time I recall my coupons from kids and hope my story on such makes you smile, too — even if you read it the first time around (and thank you if you did!).

COUPON QUEEN
(Originally published June 6, 2011)

coupon book for momCoupons are a hot commodity in my world. Sure, I use coupons for products when grocery shopping, but what I'm talking about here are coupons as gifts.

Somewhere along the line of rearing three daughters, creating coupons to be redeemed for good deeds and great times became a recurring gift, either from me to them or from them to me. Of those, I especially remember...

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