What Do You Want Your Grandchildren to Remember About You?

March 11, 2022

If you were lucky enough to have your grandparents in your life, what do you remember about them? Don’t think about it, just answer quickly. What is the first thing that came to mind when you read that question?

For me, the answer is that my grandmother used to write me letters. She lived in Kansas, and my family lived in California, and we only got to see her every 18 months. Her letters were her way of keeping in touch with me. In her letters, my grandma would tell me what she did that week, or who she saw, or maybe what the weather was like. It was just stuff… stuff I don’t even remember. But I do remember that she always ended her letters with a super corny joke. And if she ran out of room at the bottom of the paper, she would continue writing up the side of the paper, which I thought was hilarious.

Her letters made me feel special.

I remember a lot of other things about my grandma, too, of course. I can picture her hands reaching into her wallet in search of a penny to give me so I could walk to the store and buy penny candy. I remember her churning butter, which seemed so very antiquated for me, a California girl. I remember her clearing food from the table and dumping leftovers into the “slop bucket” for the pig’s breakfast the next morning. And there’s so much more.

As a grandma, myself, I do everything I can to make my grandchildren know how special they are to me. And I wonder how they would answer my question if they were asked 20 years from now.

As a toddler, Ella, our 6-year-old granddaughter, latched onto an inexpensive little fabric doll that she calls Baby. She was so attached to the doll, that her parents bought multiples of the doll (as in about a dozen) to keep on hand in case one got lost. Ella is now down to her last Baby. Poor Baby keeps losing arms and legs and ponytails.

When Baby needs “surgery,” Ella says “Let’s call Grandma; She can fix anything.”

I received another urgent message from Ella this week, with a picture attached.

Maybe that’s what I will be remembered for. Being able to “fix anything”.

I’ll take that!

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16 Comments

  1. Traci Brennan

    This is the best of your blog posts! My DGS gifted me with a write it yourself memory book for Christmas. It has been a joy to answer his hand-picked questions about life, the universe, and everything. Make the most of these precious years. They fly by so quickly.

    • Karen Schulz

      Hi Traci, Your DGS hand-picked the questions to ask you? THAT is awesome! I love love love that! What cool project for him AND you!

  2. Karla McCormick

    My mom, gone in January, was constantly fixing or altering clothes for my 2 nieces who live here. I’m sure she will be sorely missed for that alone. She was pretty good. She loved her Singer Featherlite (or something like that
    heavier than bricks) sewing machine. She was told never to get rid of it because they don’t make them anymore like that.

    • Karen Schulz

      I’m sorry for the loss of your mom. That’s a hard one. I hope you kept her Featherlite! What a treasure.

  3. Jean Norris

    I remember looking up at my grandmother’s ceiling and seeing 4 hooks. My mother told me they were there for the quilts. I always wondered why she would hang quilts up there. Then one afternoon when we went to visit I saw 5 ladies sitting around a quilt. They were all very busy quilting on the latest quilt they were making. It was so wonderful to finally know where my grandmother got all the beautiful quilts she gave to all her friends and family. The quilt, she made for me, was called Sunbonnet Sue. I loved that so much that I dragged it all around the house. I certainly wish that I still had it!

    • Karen Schulz

      What a wonderful memory, Jean! I remember my mom sitting around a HUGE wooden quilting frame with who knows how many other ladies. Great memories, aren’t they? Yes, I wish you still had that quilt too. What a treasure it would be.

  4. Vicki Garrett

    Karen, I’m an ‘army brat’ so very rarely was I able to visit my grandparents, but do remember my grandmother had a crafty nature and introduced to me to several, one included engraving a serving tray, Unfortunately it was one I didn’t pursue. She also quilted and besides quilting bed size quilts, she made a doll size quilt for my dolls, which I still have after so many, many years. Course the pieces in that little quilt are torn and tattered I just can’t resist getting rid of it!
    And my grandfather, his lap was the most comfortable for sitting on when I was a wee bit of a girl and as I grew up meeting him on his walk home from having him meeting up with his cronies and working in the garden. He was a “chew’n tobaccy” grandpa and one Christmas when we were overseas my mom, brother, and I took an old coffee can and decorated it all up for him and shipped it off to him for his gift…..he kept that old can for the rest of his life for what we intended it to be….his homemade spittoon! 75 years old and I still them so much!!

    • Karen Schulz

      Oh, Vicki, I love your stories. My grandpa chewed tobacco too and also had his “spit can.” It’s so awesome that your grandpa kept and used the one you made for him. And I would not part with that doll-size quilt either. I can hear the love for your grandparents in your writing. Thanks for sharing your stories. They brought back even more memories for me.

  5. Vicki Garrett

    What I want for my grandchildren to remember me with, I guess it is to remember just how much I love them, I see them often at Church, now that I am retired and am always ready to hug them. They are young adults now having reached the ages of 21 and 18. I have basically been a baker the last few years and always tried to include some treats among my gifts to them and last few years I have basically done more instead of the material gifts; and this year my grandson was so delighted to get his bag of baked goodies that he exclaimed “When I finally leave home you can bake enough for me to last a year!!!” Guess I’ll be busy LOL.

    • Karen Schulz

      That is a wonderful story, Vicki. Perhaps you can’t bake a whole year’s supply of goodies, but you could consider creating a book for him with all of your recipes. 🙂

      • Vicki Garrett

        Karen, I have done that before as well as created a collection of recipe cards and given as gifts, it is a lot of work but one I know is appreciated, My grandson is not a baker per se but if or when he gets married I will be presenting him with either a notebook full of recipes or a wooden card file with some of my favorites that he or his wife will enjoy. 🙂

        • Karen Schulz

          What a treasure and a great wedding gift!!!

  6. Carol Detwiler

    Karen, I love your blog posts. They are so . . . “US.” Our granddaughter is so attached to her Owly. And yes, there are other “owlies” up in the cupboard. Each gets a turn depending upon the circumstances: washing or repairing. Now I will be ever conscious of what I want to be remembered for in her little eyes. Thank you!

    • Karen Schulz

      LOL! Yes. I totally get that – in the wash, set aside for repair. Such precious times, aren’t they?

  7. Joyce Swaim

    Granny would take red onion skins and ‘dye’ the Easter eggs.

    • Karen Schulz

      Wow! I’ve never heard of that, but it sounds a lot less messy than the eye dyes that are available today!

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