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The Grandmother Principles
Release Date: April, 2000
Publisher: Abbeville Press
In our mobile, youth-obsessed culture, we have developed a grandmother problem, says Suzette Haden Elgin. "Women who become grandmothers don't know whether to rejoice or run for cover and grandmotherly role models and skills are disappearing." In The Grandmother Principles, Elgin, the bestselling author of The Gentle Art of Verbal Self Defense has created a commonsense guide for learning to "think like a grandmother." Elgin organizes the book around 21 "Grandmother Principles"--short aphorisms that are a designed to bring more joy and serenity to the adventure of being a grandparent. A sample: A grandmother is a safe haven; most arguments are about who is in charge; a grandmother is not a quarterback; there are secret stories that only a grandmother should know. Each principle is explored by addressing hot topics for grandparents and detailed in sidebars, comics, and sample dialogues. Elgin's buoyant, supportive personality guides grandparents through a hefty list of how-to's including how to avoid being a martyr, deal with memory loss, cope with family disgrace, tell a family story, or write a family newsletter. In each chapter, smart sidebars add levity for example, "seven ways to end up helpless." An appendix details "granny crafts" from crocheting to creating doll clothes and making homemade play dough. Elgin, a grandmother of 10, offers abundant and reliable advice--often convincing us that Grandma knows best. --Barbara Mackoff
||0.7 x 5.8 x 8.5 in.
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Posted by Susan Dunn on 6/7/2003
"In most traditional cultures," Elgin quotes Sheila Kitzinger as saying, "grandmothers are people of immense importance and authority." And she goes on to tell us how, and to tell us why it's worth being that, if you aren't already. I coach men and women in midlife transition, and it gave me many practical tips for passing on to clients. While Elgin had only one participating grandmother, I had two, but they could not have been more different. However, like the "survivors" she describes in her book, who thrived throughout chaos and hardship because they had "one adult they could count on," it is my grandmothers who made me who I am, and to whom I return, in my heart and in my mind, when things get tough, or when I need to know how to do something, or how to be. Elgin states eloquently what my grandmothers meant to me, and what I hope to be for my grandchildren, and what you can be for yours. You'll find her no-holds-barred approach to realitymost helpful, and her down-to-earth practical tips most welcome. She'll clarify a lot of things you're aware of in the back of your mind but may not be able to put your finger on. This book is almost a call to action -- in today's fast-paced and changing society, where family life can seem to a child like a rapid-fire slideshow of new houses, new neighborhoods, new towns, new jobs, a new mom, a new dad, new culture, new religion, new church, new siblings, new step-siblings, what remains the same? Perhaps you, the grandmother--in your heart, in your approach, in your ways, and in your steadfast love. read it. You'll be glad you did. P.S. She's especially good about the parts that are hard for use grandmothers, or me anyway. She calls it "the velvet glove". You'll know just what she means!
A most practical,endearing, & enduring book!
Posted by Sandra Gordon on 1/2/1999
"Grandmother Principles," presents practical, useful, and easy-to-apply suggestions for making the Grandmother experience a VERY good one. Without taking herself too seriously (cartoons run rampant through the book), Suzette Haden Elgin, Ph.D.(in Linguistics) tells in comforting detail how to be a Grandmother who is welcomed in any family. Grandmother as reliable (not overbearing) source, as clear communicator, as kinship connection - these ideas and more, author Elgin presents with warmth - and the understanding experience that having ten grandchildren herself has provided. MUST reading for Grandmothers & Grandmothers to be. A great gift idea also for parents of young children to give to their own parents. This book is a a what-to-do, what-not-to-do Godsend! -Sandy Gordon