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The Mindful Grandparent: The Art of Loving Our Children's Children

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Loving our children's children well is an art--one we keep learning as they grow. Making memories and fostering relationships with our grandchildren in the midst of a fast-moving culture isn't easy, and a legacy that lasts isn't crafted overnight. So how do we as grandparents cultivate strong, meaningful relationships with the children we adore? Start with The Mindful Grandp Loving our children's children well is an art--one we keep learning as they grow. Making memories and fostering relationships with our grandchildren in the midst of a fast-moving culture isn't easy, and a legacy that lasts isn't crafted overnight. So how do we as grandparents cultivate strong, meaningful relationships with the children we adore? Start with The Mindful Grandparent. With twelve grandchildren between them, authors and educators Marilyn McEntyre and Shirley Showalter know deep in their bones that attending to the small ones in our lives has never been more important. Grandparents can help little ones learn to value relationships over things, lap time over screen time. They can help grandchildren live with intention, attentive to others, to nature, and to the diverse, beautiful, and troubled social world around them. The Mindful Grandparent doesn't shy away from the challenging issues in contemporary grandparenting. Through inspired ideas teamed with simple practices and engaging stories, The Mindful Grandparent covers wide-ranging topics such as cultivating curiosity, giving meaningful gifts, helping children explore difficult topics, building a grandparent team, honoring adult children's boundaries, and managing technology. Let The Mindful Grandparent be your guide and source of refuge for the sacred and sometimes bewildering work of grandparenting.


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Loving our children's children well is an art--one we keep learning as they grow. Making memories and fostering relationships with our grandchildren in the midst of a fast-moving culture isn't easy, and a legacy that lasts isn't crafted overnight. So how do we as grandparents cultivate strong, meaningful relationships with the children we adore? Start with The Mindful Grandp Loving our children's children well is an art--one we keep learning as they grow. Making memories and fostering relationships with our grandchildren in the midst of a fast-moving culture isn't easy, and a legacy that lasts isn't crafted overnight. So how do we as grandparents cultivate strong, meaningful relationships with the children we adore? Start with The Mindful Grandparent. With twelve grandchildren between them, authors and educators Marilyn McEntyre and Shirley Showalter know deep in their bones that attending to the small ones in our lives has never been more important. Grandparents can help little ones learn to value relationships over things, lap time over screen time. They can help grandchildren live with intention, attentive to others, to nature, and to the diverse, beautiful, and troubled social world around them. The Mindful Grandparent doesn't shy away from the challenging issues in contemporary grandparenting. Through inspired ideas teamed with simple practices and engaging stories, The Mindful Grandparent covers wide-ranging topics such as cultivating curiosity, giving meaningful gifts, helping children explore difficult topics, building a grandparent team, honoring adult children's boundaries, and managing technology. Let The Mindful Grandparent be your guide and source of refuge for the sacred and sometimes bewildering work of grandparenting.

34 review for The Mindful Grandparent: The Art of Loving Our Children's Children

  1. 4 out of 5

    Tracy

    The Mindful Grandparent is about listening to our children and grandchildren, as well as to our own hearts and life needs, as we take up our position as elders in our families. This book offers options for serving with conscious wisdom, while also respecting who we, and they (our children and grandchildren) authentically are. Pay attention to the title. Notice the words: MINDFUL. ART. LOVING. OUR CHILDREN’S CHILDREN. These words signal no need to fear this is another emotionally or physically ex The Mindful Grandparent is about listening to our children and grandchildren, as well as to our own hearts and life needs, as we take up our position as elders in our families. This book offers options for serving with conscious wisdom, while also respecting who we, and they (our children and grandchildren) authentically are. Pay attention to the title. Notice the words: MINDFUL. ART. LOVING. OUR CHILDREN’S CHILDREN. These words signal no need to fear this is another emotionally or physically exhausting self-help book— one nagging you to strive for self-improvement, implying that you’re doing things wrong and there’s a better way. Instead, this is a book full of compassionate wisdom, creativity, and connection. It’s the kind of book I call a “storied-how-to.” Here is an open-hearted invitation to know our gifts and limitations while choosing how we want to be elders in our families. This is encouragement to be ourselves, respectful of needs—our own as well as our children’s and grandchildren’s. The Mindful Grandparent is NOT a guilt-trippy self-help book. It delivers on its promise to be “a guide and source of refuge for the sacred and sometimes bewildering work of grandparenting.” That wisdom-way of presenting information and inspiration makes this book worthy of 4 stars. The 5th star is for 3 areas of excellence. 1) The authors collaborate skillfully to show, again and again, that there is no single “right” way to grandparent. The opening section “The Widening Circle” reinforces this non-supremacist way of being in the world by reminding grandparents that no one of us is the sole or most important influence in our precious grandchildren's lives. Rather, we are important members of their circle of elders. 2) The writing is superb—vivid, engaging, imaginative. I’m exceptionally tough to please in this aspect. Because I dearly love skilled, artistic literary writing, and because I'm committed to spending my free time doing what nurtures me and gives me joy, I don't finish a book if the writing bores or distracts me. 3) It's not merely well-written information, it's a good book>. The book’s organization is both logical and poetic. There’s a hidden 5-act structure, like any good Shakespearean tragicomedy, along with thoughtful acknowledgement of the joys, as well as the unavoidable sorrows, of familial life. Kudos to them for being offering real inspiration, with not a trace of toxic optimism. I recommend this book for grandparents at any stage of the important, whole-life-affirming journey of becoming elders, of giving to grandchildren "the gift of time made sacred by other gifts--presence, attention, marking, and honoring."

  2. 4 out of 5

    Laurie Buchanan

    Delivered with dashes of humor and dollops of grace, this practical and practice-able handbook is a guidepost for grandparents that’s chockfull of inspiration to encourage, equip, and help you navigate the ups and downs of this all-important relationship and family role. I’m glad I have THE MINDFUL GRANDPARENT to illuminate the journey.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Richard Gilbert

    The key to this book’s appeal, power, and inspiration is spotlighted in its title. Mindful. Which means, essentially, to be aware. Aware of a kid’s gifts and challenges. Aware of their particulars and larger context. Aware of what seems needed. Aware that you can be a lever, a multiplying force. Loving and enjoying grandchildren is as easy as falling off a log. Being a grandparent has enriched me. And I’ve seen our grandchildren delight in my wife and me—singalongs in the car, helping prepare me The key to this book’s appeal, power, and inspiration is spotlighted in its title. Mindful. Which means, essentially, to be aware. Aware of a kid’s gifts and challenges. Aware of their particulars and larger context. Aware of what seems needed. Aware that you can be a lever, a multiplying force. Loving and enjoying grandchildren is as easy as falling off a log. Being a grandparent has enriched me. And I’ve seen our grandchildren delight in my wife and me—singalongs in the car, helping prepare meals, gardening—and I’ve seen their love for their other grandparents. The Mindful Grandparent ups the ante. How might you engage with and influence the kids on an issue such as racial diversity? On caring for the Earth? On processing illness and death? Such issues inevitably arise as you steer a stroller down the sidewalk, fill the recycle bin, tend the sick, and grieve the dead. Being more conscious and intentional and engaged, while providing “quiet spaciousness” for them too, can feel challenging, even daunting. But Marilyn McEntyre and Shirley Showalter give ideas and examples to turn your potential as a teacher and influencer into your grandkids’ reality. You must be true to yourself, to them, and to their situation. You can’t do everything, be what you are not, the authors make clear. Maybe you are not the grandparent who plays soccer too. You’re probably not a saint, either, and in return for your time and attention, can ask for some in return. But here’s another big thing you must be aware of. You will resonate in a grandchild for a lifetime. And through your grandchildren, your touch might ripple into generations you’ll never live to see.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Melanie Springer Mock

    The Mindful Grandparent celebrates the many manifestations of grandparents’ love. For Showalter and McIntyre, that love is expressed in each story carefully told, and in their thoughtful reflection on what it means to be grandparents in a world beset by challenges. What they’ve written is most certainly a gift for their grandchildren, who now have their families’ stories and traditions lovingly inscribed by their grandmas. But The Mindful Grandparent is also a gift for those who long to develop The Mindful Grandparent celebrates the many manifestations of grandparents’ love. For Showalter and McIntyre, that love is expressed in each story carefully told, and in their thoughtful reflection on what it means to be grandparents in a world beset by challenges. What they’ve written is most certainly a gift for their grandchildren, who now have their families’ stories and traditions lovingly inscribed by their grandmas. But The Mindful Grandparent is also a gift for those who long to develop close, intentional, sacred relationships with their children’s children.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    As we hold that new grand baby in our arms, the offspring of our own child, we know we want to get it right. But being a grandparent isn’t always easy. The Mindful Grandparent is a thoughtful and helpful guide to navigating one of the most rewarding and most challenging of life’s opportunities. Shirley Showalter and Marilyn McEntyre, the authors of “The Mindful Grandparent,” set out to give grandparents the tools to make the most of this special role in life. And they deliver. Grandparents thems As we hold that new grand baby in our arms, the offspring of our own child, we know we want to get it right. But being a grandparent isn’t always easy. The Mindful Grandparent is a thoughtful and helpful guide to navigating one of the most rewarding and most challenging of life’s opportunities. Shirley Showalter and Marilyn McEntyre, the authors of “The Mindful Grandparent,” set out to give grandparents the tools to make the most of this special role in life. And they deliver. Grandparents themselves - McEntyre of nine and Showalter of three - the authors rely on their life experiences to write the short essays that comprise the chapters of this easy-to-read book. Topics covered are timeless and timely, from respecting the parents’ wishes on what they do or don’t want their children to eat, especially when those choices don’t match our own; to the importance of building cross-cultural and cross-racial relations to help children understand our broader world; to coming to grips with emotions and difficult topics like dying. Each chapter includes a list of Suggestions for Grandparents, offering practical ideas for implementing the concept just presented. The Mindful Grandparent is written mainly for those in the earlier years of grand parenting. As I read, I wished I’d had this guide when I was a new grandparent and I also found myself wishing for a similar book that focused on the challenges of the later teen years. But a grandparent always has a role to play, and The Mindful Grandparent triggered many thoughts I could use with my grandchildren. For instance, the suggestion of writing letters to your grandchildren at important points in their lives or as part of your will. That’s advice good for any age. I recommend this book for anyone who who is looking forward to being a grandparent or who is a grandparent.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Marian Beaman

    The Mindful Grand-parent by Marilyn McEntyre and Shirley Showalter offers kindly guidance for grandparents of all ages and stages: a handbook of practical instruction, a roadmap for discovering the joys of grand-parenting, and a treasure trove of personal stories and resources. Authors McEntire and Showalter, both educators, knit themes together with stories gleaned from experience. The authors never lose sight of their audience, offering down-to-earth suggestions for grandparents. Some is contai The Mindful Grand-parent by Marilyn McEntyre and Shirley Showalter offers kindly guidance for grandparents of all ages and stages: a handbook of practical instruction, a roadmap for discovering the joys of grand-parenting, and a treasure trove of personal stories and resources. Authors McEntire and Showalter, both educators, knit themes together with stories gleaned from experience. The authors never lose sight of their audience, offering down-to-earth suggestions for grandparents. Some is contained in lists, which I found helpful: Ch. 15 “Stuff Better than Toys” Ch. 25 “What Good Grandparents Do” Ch. 43 “A Few Truths to Talk About” Helpful tips for specific needs are also included: • Grand-parenting from afar? Light a candle as a way to send out love energy to distant grandchildren. • What about emotion? Authors address fear and cite books and songs that inspire courage. 131 • How to become a good ancestor? See Chapter 49 As a grandparent of four teens, this book invited me to reminisce and pause to consider my legacy. Bite-size chapters make for stress-free reading. At 257 pages, the book is a must-read for those on the threshold of grand-parenting or long-time elders. This well-researched volume can be a great Mother’s Day or birthday gift for grandparents at both ends of the spectrum.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Marlena Fiol

    Unlike the many other grand-parenting handbooks on the market, The Mindful Grandparent offers a wise perspective rather than another list of rules. Yes, every chapter ends with useful tips. But the core message of the book is about the underlying attributes of presence, trust, and awareness that guide us to do the right thing. Mindful grand-parenting is not about heeding a set of rules; it’s a dance. It’s not about being perfect; it’s about seeing the world newly and with deep awareness at each Unlike the many other grand-parenting handbooks on the market, The Mindful Grandparent offers a wise perspective rather than another list of rules. Yes, every chapter ends with useful tips. But the core message of the book is about the underlying attributes of presence, trust, and awareness that guide us to do the right thing. Mindful grand-parenting is not about heeding a set of rules; it’s a dance. It’s not about being perfect; it’s about seeing the world newly and with deep awareness at each step along the way. And it’s not only about teaching our young ones; it’s also about learning from them the qualities of innocence and childlikeness that we have too often buried. Whether you are already a seasoned grandparent or on the threshold of this chapter of your life, this book will challenge you to awaken to who you are in this moment, and who you can become, which as the authors say, is “what grand-parenting, and life itself, is all about.”

  8. 5 out of 5

    Betsy Hay

    "We may not be able to make the lives of our grandchildren simpler or altogether safe, but we can make sure they know that on this earthly adventure they will be held, witnessed, accompanied and loved." The words of Marilyn McEntyre and Shirley Showalter in their marvelous new book will resonate with those who seek to make the most of the unique role of grandparenting. By sharing their own personal experiences and wisdom, the authors compel the reader to reimagine creative and supportive ways to "We may not be able to make the lives of our grandchildren simpler or altogether safe, but we can make sure they know that on this earthly adventure they will be held, witnessed, accompanied and loved." The words of Marilyn McEntyre and Shirley Showalter in their marvelous new book will resonate with those who seek to make the most of the unique role of grandparenting. By sharing their own personal experiences and wisdom, the authors compel the reader to reimagine creative and supportive ways to engage one's own grandchildren in the context of today's opportunities and challenges. Practical resources and tools for enhancing grandparenting tasks are fresh and thoughtful. But it is the invitation to hold the grandchild-grandparent space sacred that leaves the reader feeling excited and confident about each encounter ahead!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Susan Davis

    The Mindful Grandparent by Marilyn McIntyre and Shirley Showalter guided me on a gentle journey of thought and reflection about the many intriguing and complex aspects of the grandparent relationship. As veterans in grand parenting, they offer insight and wisdom into this stage of life. The book is divided into five sections: The Widening Circle, The World Around Them, Feelings, Grandparenting by Hand, Their Future and Ours. The breadth of the topics covered would add to the skill set for any gra The Mindful Grandparent by Marilyn McIntyre and Shirley Showalter guided me on a gentle journey of thought and reflection about the many intriguing and complex aspects of the grandparent relationship. As veterans in grand parenting, they offer insight and wisdom into this stage of life. The book is divided into five sections: The Widening Circle, The World Around Them, Feelings, Grandparenting by Hand, Their Future and Ours. The breadth of the topics covered would add to the skill set for any grandparent. They combine personal anecdotes to illustrate a concept and follow up with a section which includes additional reading, children's literature, and other resources. The book is a delight to read and provides much to ponder.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Linda Hoye

    Full of thoughtful reflection, practical wisdom, and suggestions for making the most of the time we spend with our grandchildren, The Mindful Grandparent: The Art of Loving Our Children's Children is just as much a treasure for grandparents just starting out on this important and oh-so-fulfilling journey when our children have children as it is for seasoned grandparents. Highly recommend! Full of thoughtful reflection, practical wisdom, and suggestions for making the most of the time we spend with our grandchildren, The Mindful Grandparent: The Art of Loving Our Children's Children is just as much a treasure for grandparents just starting out on this important and oh-so-fulfilling journey when our children have children as it is for seasoned grandparents. Highly recommend!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Suzan

    I love how this book speaks of being aware of your grandchild's needs, gifts, interests, etc. The book also talks about today's Grandparents and how the role of grandparents has changed with the times. I wish this book were given to every new grandparent. I love how this book speaks of being aware of your grandchild's needs, gifts, interests, etc. The book also talks about today's Grandparents and how the role of grandparents has changed with the times. I wish this book were given to every new grandparent.

  12. 5 out of 5

    M

  13. 5 out of 5

    Sue Swartz

  14. 4 out of 5

    B

  15. 5 out of 5

    Margo Jantzi

  16. 4 out of 5

    Merritt Burstein

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kay Nussbaum

  18. 4 out of 5

    Diane

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ann Gemmel

  20. 4 out of 5

    Shirley Showalter

  21. 5 out of 5

    Kim

  22. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

  23. 4 out of 5

    Terri

  24. 4 out of 5

    Marcia Meier

  25. 5 out of 5

    Aneta

  26. 4 out of 5

    Robin

  27. 4 out of 5

    Carrie

  28. 4 out of 5

    Melinda Ryen

  29. 5 out of 5

    Karen Miles

  30. 4 out of 5

    Brenda

  31. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly

  32. 5 out of 5

    Melisa Dowling

  33. 4 out of 5

    Marleah

  34. 5 out of 5

    Ruby Reads

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