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Ohio Department of Aging Boomerang: It all comes back to you!

Boomerang: It all comes back to you!

My Family - August 2009

Put the Emphasis on Family This Grandparent's Day
Celebrations Need to Evolve as Grandparents Change

Grandparents today are a bit different than previous generations. Gone are the days that Grandma could usually be found in her rocking chair, baking cookies or sewing a quilt. These days, you are more likely to find "Glam-ma" (or "Glamorous Grandma") busy at her job, volunteering in her community, taking classes at the local community college or traveling.

Whatever you choose to do this Grandparent's Day, include the entire family and it is sure to be a hit.Modern grandparents are actively engaged in life, but are also playing a much larger part in the lives of their grandchildren. In fact, 2.5 million grandparents are responsible for most of the basic needs of one or more grandchildren who live with them, according to the most recent research, and 1.5 million of these grandparents are in the labor force, too.

National Grandparents Day, Sunday, Sept. 13 this year, honors grandparents and emphasizes the strength, guidance and information that grandparents can offer to other generations. Just as grandparents are evolving, so is Grandparents Day. Many families are seeking activities that include all generations, emphasize physical activity and focus on fun. Here are a few ideas your family could use to celebrate the day.

  • Have a "day camp" in your yard or local park. Pitch tents, go fishing, have a cookout, arts and crafts lessons and more.
  • Organize a miniature golf tournament that pits grandfather/grandson and grandmother/granddaughter teams against others, with a prize for the winner of each hole.
  • Go boating, biking, hiking or just walk around the neighborhood together.
  • Hold an "Odd Olympics" with goofy athletic events, such as walker races, cane tosses, backwards races and more.
  • Play a game of "Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?" pitting parents and grandparents against real fifth graders (or fourth, third, second...).
  • Get in the kitchen and cook together. Hand down old family recipes or create new dishes that incorporate everyone's favorite ingredients.
  • Volunteer together as a family. Pick up litter in the park, offer to do chores for neighbors or contact a local organization to see what help they need.

Whatever you choose to do, include the entire family and it is sure to be a hit. Happy Grandparents Day!