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GPstaff's Blog

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GPstaff

A REQUEST FOR STORIES

Hi all --

A writer from Today.com is looking for grandparents who currently work and provides regular childcare for their grandkids. If anyone is interested in being interviewed, please email me at latoya@grandparents.com.

Thank you!

GPstaff

Happy Gorgeous Grandma Day!

blog-0923244001374516031.jpgHey, gorgeous! Happy Gorgeous Grandma Day! According to Gorgeous Grandma, a gorgeous grandma "is every woman who believes she has her whole life ahead of her, not her whole life behind her."

Who's the most gorgeous grandma you know? The women on this list are our picks.

GPstaff

blog-0538573001365020450.png"On April 3rd, 1973, Motorola engineer Marty Cooper placed the first public call from a cellphone. In midtown Manhattan, Cooper called Joel Engel — head of rival research department Bell Labs — saying, 'Joel, this is Marty. I'm calling you from a cell phone, a real handheld portable cell phone.' The call was placed on a Motorola DynaTAC 8000x, which weighed 2.5 pounds, a far cry from today's 4-ounce handsets."

Today, the cellphone is 40 years old. That's old enough to be a grandparent!

Do you remember your first cellphone? What did it look like?

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GPstaff

blog-0688466001364918867.jpgThe day for jokes has passed but that doesn't mean we can't relive some of yesterday's greatest April Fools jokes across the Web.

Netflix introduced new categories that shows us just how repetitive movie and series posters are. Check out the best April Fools jokes from Google, Gmail, YouTube and more here.

GPstaff

blog-0726984001363792825.jpgHigh school student Tori Olson has a memory for the books -- one she got to share with her grandmother and great-grandmother. Tori performed a dance routine with the two women during her school's Fillie Follies spring variety show. The three women did splits and high-kicks and brought the house down.

For them, it was more than just a performance. Tori's mother passed away in 2008 and her grandmother and great-grandmother have been the mother figures in her life ever since.

"These two ladies really have done a lot of things for me to shape me into who I am now," Tori said.

Read the full article here.

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GPstaff

In "All the Best, George Bush: My Life in Letters and Other Writings," the 41st president shares some of his famous (and cherished) hand-written letters. Here, his granddaughter reflects on all she's learned from both grandparents. First lesson? Don't talk too much about yourself.

"My grandfather's mother, my great-grandma, always said: 'Don't brag. There is nothing more boring than someone who only talks about themselves,'" Jenna said.

Read more of the lessons here.

What lessons do you pass on to your grandchildren?

GPstaff

blog-0049700001362583147.jpgThis is a love story for the ages. 93-year-old Phyllis Potter suffers from dementia, but her husband Jack keeps her fading memory alive by reading a diary he's kept for more than 70 years. Jack, 91, visits Phyllis everyday at her nursing home with photographs and detailed accounts of special moments since they met in 1941.

"I remember it like it was yesterday the first time I met her," Jack said. "She came up to me and asked me to dance. She was an excellent dance partner and an older woman. I thought she was wonderful and I still do. It was definitely love at first sight, everything fell into place. It was uncanny really."

The two celebrated their 70th anniversary last month. Congratulations to them. What a wonderful man!

How long have you and your spouse been together?

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GPstaff

Hard financial times aren't above anyone. We've all had that kid who moved back home after college, and on rare occasions, our child, their spouse and our grandkids who've moved back in. It can be a pain with so many adults under one roof, but there are ways to deal with the stress. Step 1? Take a deep breath. See 5 more ways to create a less stressful existence with your boomerang kids here.

Did your kids ever move back home? Was it stressful? If so, how did you handle it?

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GPstaff

I remember the moment I realized I wasn't young anymore. I was at a family gathering humming along to a song on the radio when one of the kids there, a family friend's adolescent daughter, looked at me and said, "Wow, you know this song?" I'm thinking, "Of course, I'm not THAT old!" I was only in my late 40s -- almost 20+ years away from what I pictured as old, but to this little girl I was an old fogey. In the girl's eyes, I thought I was hip by singing the same lyrics she and her friends sang. It was a very harrowing experience.

Our friends at Huffington Post 50 asked readers about the moment they realized they weren't young anymore, and the responses are hilarious and endearing. Read them here and then tell us below and the moment you realized you weren't young anymore.

GPstaff

Alright, so maybe you smoked a bit of weed in high school or college. Perhaps you even dabbled with something stronger. You want to tell your kids about it so that they can learn from your mistakes. Good idea? According to a new study, no. Researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign that kids were less likely to think drugs were bad if their parents had shared stories of past substance use with them. Kids whose parents simply drove home an anti-drug message without revealing their own indiscretions were more likely to avoid them.

So does this mean you should blatantly lie to your kids? Did you share any of your teenage/ young adult experiences with your kids in hopes they would learn from your mistakes?

GPstaff

blog-0430252001361555051.jpegThe Oscar's are Sunday night, and we admit it: when it comes to the Oscar's, our favorite part is looking to see what everyone is wearing. Our second favorite thing? Guessing who is going to win. We loved Lincoln, Les Miserables and Argo. And it's a toss up between Hugh Jackman and Daniel Day-Lewis for best actor. But the real surprise this year? The Silver Linings Playbook. This story, about a guy with bipolar disorder who is trying to remake his life, was heartfelt and touching—not to mention that Robert DeNiro, Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence were all amazing. (We'll never doubt Bradley Cooper's acting ability agin!) We like going to the movies to be entertained, but we also like going to be inspired, and that movie inspired us.

Which movie was your favorite this year? And what are your Oscar picks?

See the most cringe-worthy Oscar moments in history here. (Remember James Cameron announcing that he was king-of-the-world? And Angelina Jolie's interlude with her brother?)

Want to test your knowledge of this year's nominees? Take our Oscar I.Q. quiz!

See you Monday for the best-and worst-dressed recap!

GPstaff

There's a reason why the phrase is "Chatty Cathy" and not "Chatty Calvin." According to a recent study, there's a biological reason that women speak more than men -- on average, 13,000 more words. The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, found that women's brains contain higher levels of a "language protein" called FOXP2. The protein involves vocalization. Researchers even found that levels of FOXP2 were higher in 4-year-old girls compared to their male classmates.

Of course, the findings don't apply to all women, but we chatty women can finally say we were just designed this way.

Are you the more talkative person between you and your spouse?

GPstaff

blog-0891533001361379713.jpgElsie Smith, a 91-year-old widow of Arlington, VA, received the surprise of a lifetime after her husband of 46 years passed away on February 5th. Elsie wanted to fulfill her husband's last wish to be buried in a Washington state cemetery, but Elsie only had $9 to her name. She planned on selling every possession she had to bury her late husband where he desired. Then a Seattle news station picked up Elsie's story and the donations came rolling in. On February 18th, she was presented with a check for $12,000.

"I'm just dumbfounded," Smith said, after finding out her husband's burial was taken care of. "I loved that man more than anything in this whole wide world."

GPstaff

blog-0290484001361294868.jpegFauja Singh was 89 years old when he ran his first marathon. His wife and his eldest child had just passed, and he needed a way to cope with the grief. At 101, Fauja has ran eight marathons in total. He participated in a mini marathon last month to raise awareness about women's rights after the rape of Indian student Jyoti Singh Pandey.

"I am pained to listen that my daughters and granddaughters and great granddaughters are no longer safe," he told reporters.

What a man! Grandparents, what social causes do you support?

GPstaff

blog-0357312001361199964.jpg68-year-old Andrea Peterson has an amazing story to tell. She knew, after being saved from a burning building when she was young, that she wanted to be a firefighter when she grew up. She voiced this dream moments after being saved to the very firemen who rescued her.

They laughed and told her, "You’ll be a good mommy, you’ll be a good teacher, maybe you’ll be a nurse, but you can never be a fireman.”

Decades later, Andrea has realized her dream of being a firefighter. Read the moving story of her journey.

GPstaff

Love Does Last a Lifetime

blog-0770141001360959447.jpgJust in case you needed proof that true love really does exist, we saw this on Valentine's Day on Gawker, and just had to share it. It reminds us how special love really is...and it made us cry!

Do you have a romantic Valentine's Day story? Share it with us.

GPstaff

Your grandparents may have been survivors of the 9/11 attack, the Great Depression, or even the craziness of Nazi Germany. Whatever tragedies they may have gone through, they deserve that sense of pride coming from you, whether when you talk about them with other people or simply write about them on one single blog post. Whatever your ways are, make sure people will know how great people they are. Here’s an idea: “How to Share Our Grandparents’ Survivor Stories” by Rachel Rosmarin.

GPstaff

Giving Money the Smart Way

For most of us, grandparents included, last year was a year of financial meltdown—unemployment, low wage rate, a bad economy, and superstorm Sandy. Logic tells us this isn’t the right time to spend big. Have you defied this logic last holiday season? You might have made the mistake, but (still) feel good about it! You can also employ this advice (“Grandparents Can Give Gift of Money Smarts” by Janet Kidd Stewart) the next time you’re on for sharing some pennies.

My money mistake this year? Buying three of my grandchildren bikes for Christmas.

What were yours?

GPstaff

blog-0137642001360779677.jpgLooking for the very best of man's best friend? Meet Banana Joe.

The five-year-old Affenpinscher was named top dog at Westminster Kennel Club last night, beating out more than 2,700 pups for Best in Show. Banana Joe V Tani Kazari - his full, official name - is from the Netherlands, but understands commands in four different languages. His gleaming coat and affable personality put him a notch above the other six finalists, including an American foxhound, a German wirehaired pointer, a smooth fox terrier, a bichon frise, a crowd-favorite old English sheepdog, and a Portuguese water dog much like the White House First Dog, Bo.

Did you watch the show? Do you know any dogs that measure up to Banana Joe?

Photo credit: Borismindre

GPstaff

Hi, my name is grandma and I'm addicted to giving my grandkids gifts -- even really lousy ones. I once gave my 14-year-old grandson a pinwheel I saw in a convenience store for $2.99. Bad idea. He seemed really happy about it at first then ten minutes later I walked into the kitchen and saw him throwing the gift in the garbage. My real confession should be that I'm a grandma who gives bad gifts. If you're anything like me, Kristen Chase shares some strategies that will help you pick the right gifts, whether for Christmas, birthdays, or any occasion!

GPstaff

Happy Mardi Gras!

blog-0849339001360685708.jpgHappy Fat Tuesday, y'all! In New Orleans, folks are gearing up for the final day of parties, parades, and celebrations before Lent begins. Besides elaborate costumes and plenty of live music, food plays a major role in the Mardi Gras tradition. Whether you're planning a Mardi Gras party or are just looking for a delicious dinner idea, we've rounded up the best of our Cajun recipes:

Main dishes:

Turkey and Andouille Sausage Gumbo (pictured)

Grilled Vegetable Jambalaya

Shrimp Creole

And for dessert, fluffy fried doughnuts:

Cinnamon Beignets

Not exactly what you're craving? Try this festive family menu from Louisiana chef John Besh:

Golden Fried Catfish

Sugar Snap Pea Salad with Pecans

Creamy Lemon Chess Pie (made quicker with a pre-made pie shell)

And as the New Orleanians say, laissez les bon temps rouler!

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GPstaff

Should Grandparents Smoke Pot?

blog-0392992001360620496.jpegThere's a sense of irony in the way society sees grandparents -- wise figures whose silver hair doubles as a silver halo. But today's grandparents were unruly teens and young adults at one point, too. According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, 6% of people, ages 50-59, smoke marijuana -- a statistic not surprising for a generation who has vivid memories of what like was like in the 70s. Anthonia Akintunde, of the Huffington Post 50, examines marijuana use in older adults and five concerns seniors considering using the drug should know.

Have you ever smoked marijuana? Is it something you would warn your grandkids against?