Author: Brock Griffin

Filling the Grandparenting Void

Most of us have no chance to change the world. But any of us can have an impact on our own little corner of the world.  Don Shulz is a 64-year-old retired gentleman who suffered a stroke over four years ago. Now, he’s restricted to a three-wheeled motorized wheelchair. I’m sure some men in that condition would give up on life, thinking they had nothing more to contribute. Not Don. Not long ago, Don got to know a young African American family in his neighborhood while they were outside taking walks. They became friends, and soon the young mother asked Don...

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Helping to Shape a Future Worker

Grandparent, do you find yourself speculating about your grandchild’s future career path? If your grandkids are like mine, people started characterizing them from an early age: “Wow, she has long fingers. She’ll be a great piano player some day.” Or, “He loves to push buttons and figure out how things work. I bet he’ll grow up to be an engineer.” Now, we know that many complicated factors determine our grandchild’s future. And the future is uncertain. But that doesn’t mean we can’t start shaping and visioning with our grandchildren-even at a young age. Grandchildren who are given opportunities to...

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Work Stress and Healthy Relationships

Stress is contagious. In this age of high expectations and long work hours, it’s easy for men and women to bring their worries and frustrations home and spread them all over their relationships. Grandparents might treat loved ones with the same approach as a boss, which can be very destructive. Or some grandparents might start resenting their close relationships, and expect to just relax on the sofa when they get home. Of course, that’s an insult anyone who cares for them. What can we do? First, recognize the value of “decompression time.” Take some time in the car-or in...

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Telling Stories About Work to Grandchildren

Sure, your grandkids may know the titles you carry in your work life—“architect”, “homemaker”, “retired”, “teacher”, “businessperson”. But do they know what kinds of work you have done. I suppose I will never forget a time when my grandfather and I had the better part of a day together, as he drove me to a major city about 7 hours away. I must have been about 12 years old at the time. He chose that occasion to tell me about different jobs that he held, especially when he was younger. Although more than 30 years have passed since that...

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The Importance of Toddler Talk

If you want your toddler to learn to talk, then you better start talking … and listening … and encouraging. Some child development experts believe that the more verbal interaction a child has during his toddler years, the better his chances are for being advanced later in life in terms of intellect, language skills, and social development. And I tend to agree. Communicating with a toddler can be a challenge-sometimes a guessing game, sometimes a frustration, sometimes a laugh riot. But here are some ideas for making the most of those critical early years. First, talk to your children or...

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