Have you ever attended a Grandparents Day event as a child or adult?

Perhaps on the second Sunday in September, the “official” Grandparent Day?

Or maybe you have been invited to a grandchild’s school?

Grandma Shirley and Granddad Stuart with Julia (9) and Owen (10).

Grandma Shirley and Granddad Stuart with Julia (9) and Owen (10).

Our Tulsa, OK, grandchildren, ages 10 and 9, invited us to attend Grandparent Days at their school recently. We were able to combine that visit with another special event at their church, the lighting of the labyrinth lights, with the combined cherub, youth, and adult choirs singing together. Both children sang some of our favorite songs. Here’s a clip from the singing of the South African freedom song, “Siyahamba.” Our grandchildren are standing to the right of the piano.

The Grandparents Day event at Holland Hall began with a program in the auditorium. We were able to join Grandma Nancy, who lives close to our mutual grandchildren. When we got to the auditorium, there were many grey-haired enthusiasts, hoping to catch a glimpse of their favorite children on the stage.

Children on the stage. Enthusiastic grandparents in the audience.

Children on the stage. Enthusiastic grandparents in the audience.

From the auditorium, we walked to Owen’s 5th-grade homeroom. He had a checklist of things to show and tell about.

Owen as tour guide

Owen as tour guide

After a thorough exploration of the middle school, we walked with our leader to the primary school.

Owen leads the way

Julia took over the hosting duties as we explored grade three.

Granddad couldn't resist the rabbit ears

Granddad couldn’t resist the rabbit ears

Julia stops to check out a book in one of her favorite places — the library.

Julia checks out a library book

Grandparent Day was a great success! And it ended in the best way possible — recess and Thanksgiving vacation! We had lots more adventures in the next three days and got to spend hours talking and playing and listening and observing and cooking and cleaning with these two precious ones — as mindfully as possible.

You might wonder if everyone had a grandparent. The school took care to encourage students whose grandparents weren’t available to invite a “special friend.” Wasn’t that thoughtful? Perhaps they read the book below.

Did you ever host your grandparents for a visit? Have you ever been part of a school or church Grandparent Day? Any stories to tell? If you have young children in your life, would you welcome more videos such as the one above? I always enjoy hearing from you.

Shirley Showalter


  1. Nadine Block on December 4, 2021 at 10:41 am

    I have photos and fond memories of attending Grandparents Day at my grandchildren’s schools. Thank you for sharing. Nadine

    • Shirley Showalter on December 4, 2021 at 11:19 am

      Hi Nadine! Thanks for starting the conversation. I’m glad you got to attend Grandparents Day. More than once! Have you started blogging yet? Or did you decide not to?

  2. Elfrieda Neufeld Schroeder on December 4, 2021 at 11:12 am

    Shirley, your post brought to mind our family that lives in far-away Ontario. We used to drive out twice a year, but haven’t been there since Covid hit! Oh, how we miss them, although they do their best to keep up with phone calls and emails!
    You are a great story reader! Have you heard of the book “The Girl Who Drank the Moon” by Kelly Barnhill. One of my granddaughters put it on her wish list for Christmas. I ordered it and am reading it. So different from the books with which I grew up, but so fascinating! Can’t put it down!

    • Shirley Showalter on December 4, 2021 at 5:07 pm

      Oh, Elfrieda, how hard it must be to know your family is learning and growing and not be able to be there in person. I hope that will change for you soon!

      Thanks for your kind words about my reading. I love the book recommendation also. Heading to the library this afternoon. I’ll look for it!

  3. Laurie Buchanan on December 4, 2021 at 1:39 pm

    Shirley — Oh, the richness of the experience. Oh, the fun!

    • Shirley Showalter on December 4, 2021 at 5:13 pm

      You are right, Laurie!

  4. Marian Beaman on December 4, 2021 at 10:34 pm

    I hear the pride and joy in your words here. They bring back memories of Grandparents’ days with our grandchildren when they were in grade school. I understand the impulse to spot your favorite child on stage. These days it’s finding the young man behind the tuba (or trombone) when he performs at the symphony or in the jazz ensemble.

    Audio always adds richness to storytelling. I know I’ll enjoy both of your videos after I post this.
    Thank you, Shirley!

    • Shirley Showalter on December 5, 2021 at 8:54 am

      Yes, Marian, you have entered a whole new stage of grandparenting, now that your grandsons and granddaughter are so close to young adults, and so accomplished. You have been by their sides every step of the way. And you keep in touch with those precious two-year-olds in church also.

      I am so fortunate to have so many friends who are role models of mindful grandparenting!

      • Marian Beaman on December 5, 2021 at 5:21 pm

        Now officially retired from serving in the church pre-school, I have passed that privilege on to the younger set. I do miss it though.

        • Shirley Showalter on December 5, 2021 at 7:22 pm


  5. Martha Graham-Waldon on December 4, 2021 at 11:15 pm

    Very uplifting! Thanks for sharing the joy.

    • Shirley Showalter on December 5, 2021 at 8:55 am

      Thank you, Martha. Glad you enjoyed. Time to check in on your blog too.

  6. Linda Gartz on December 5, 2021 at 9:38 pm

    What a wonderful experience. Your grandchildren are adorable and I’ll be are as sweet and polite as they appear. Always wonderful to hear good school stories!

    • Shirley Showalter on December 6, 2021 at 8:25 am

      Linda, so good to see you her again. I think I’ve lost touch. Thanks for the comment. And yes, those children are sweet and polite . . . almost all the time. 🙂 And the school’s management was very impressive.

  7. melodie davis on December 6, 2021 at 6:51 am

    Wondering if they will be living in Tulsa for awhile. What a beautiful, wonderful school the children are able to attend, I took a look at that link. Wow. To respond to your questions, I never had a chance to invite grandparents to my school in Indiana, I don’t think it (GP day) was a thing back then. 🙂 But our children were able to invite a stand-in grandma down to Linville-Edom school since my parents were not able to come out at that time. Our daughters picked Jane Hueston from our church, who babysat for them occasionally and a beloved member of our church (and active in my Clothes Closet house church) who enjoyed and took pride in the invitation immensely.

    I’m weepy this morning… you basically know why (mom’s recent homegoing), but I think it is because another member of our church and my current house church, is probably completing her life here in the coming weeks or months. I’m cooking for the family today who seem to be flying in from hither and yon. How smart and blessed you are to take advantage of these wonderful times with your grandchildren, now.

    • Shirley Showalter on December 6, 2021 at 9:23 am

      Thank you for writing, even while feeling weepy. As a born writer, you get some catharsis from putting words around feelings. I am sure you are cooking with love and that your food will be one of the many gifts that holds your family together, hither, yon, and all.

      The idea of a stand-in grandparent is a good one. No child left behind! Our children had no grandparents living close to them, so I think our daughter might have invited our neighbor Ethel to be her stand-in.

      This Advent and Christmas season will be a hard one sometimes. I pray you feel the Love behind the story in some special way.

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