We had covered our favorite books from our childhoods in several posts. We will be discussing books to which we have been introduced by our kid children and grandchildren soon, because when I thought of the topic, my colleagues here were enthusiastic, so it’s on the upcoming quarterly schedule.
However, several things occurred recently with regard to my oldest (teenage) grandchildren and books.
(The youngest one is a year and a half; he babbles as he turns the pages of his board books, so he’s on the way. I hope that he will eventually sit still long enough to have Grandma read stories to him via videochat.)
I read to his brother probably even more than my aunt and my mother read to me, which is saying something.
I read to the girls when they would be here, but very little.
The youngest girl is sixteen and is still an avid reader. She and her dad have been staying here while they are moving into their new home, (inspection, closing, moving).He has been away at wildfires twice during this time, but I have picked her up form school every day while he was gone, so we talk.
She does not take my book suggestions, and hasn’t for a long time.
She reads the same type that I have, (of recently published works), but she just is not interested in trying out my suggestions, even what has been very popular.
She has her own TBR list.
I don’t see her sister as often, but she also has not taken to my suggestions, and I don’t think that she ever has, even though I have taken hers, especially those she showed me when she was younger.
On the other hand, my oldest grandson is now 18. He had moved away years ago to be with his dad, my second son, but has stayed with me off and on. I didn’t see him reading when he was here last year for a few months and he had claimed not to be reading much before he arrived. He had also stopped playing the violin, which upset me.
Granted, I had more time and influence with that grandson through his life for various reasons, and he basically lived at my house most of his earliest life. We have been in contact a great deal since, (nearly daily), but my influence had greatly waned.
A few nights ago he contacted me about a series of books that I had read as a child, then had him read. He was speaking with his friend’s mother about them and wanted the correct name and author to tell her about them.
(Edward Eager’s “Magic” series, which I posted on last year:
We got into talking of a series that was a hit when he was younger, one which he had started me reading , and the one I even got into its sequel, which he told me that he never did read, but seemed interested now.
So, not only has his friend and his mother gotten him involved in music again and back to playing the violin, they have re-sparked his interest in books.
The mother had contacted me several times and we had long talks, mostly concerning my grandson and her appreciation of him and his friendship with her son and the family, so I know that he’s doing okay, apparently really okay.
It’s been a tough few weeks for me, and believe me, to see that my efforts paid off, to see that my influence still has roots, to that my grandson is still interested in intellectual pursuits and that he thinks fondly of the books I put before him as a child,
well, that’s some of the best pieces of news I have received in a long time.
Isn’t it wonderful to learn that your grandkids have developed and retained a love of reading? Let’s hope and pray it continues throughout his life.
LikeLiked by 2 people
Here’s hoping! I think this is a good sign. The fact that he is friends with a good family who enjoys the arts is, well, an answer to prayer.
It’s such a precarious balance — for us as parents / grandparents to assess whether (or how much) we’ve been able to be a positive influence on the literary / artistic / cultural outlooks of out offspring. All the more precarious because the children go through those awful / awkward phases of independence and rebellion and discovery… in which it’s “cool” to reject anything fostered by anyone over age 30… and it’s decidedly UN-cool to appreciate / enjoy anything recommended by those “old folks.”
I remember trying to read one of my favorite kid books to my kids and my nieces, when they were young. I had barely begun the story when they were already fidgeting and talking and, generally, making clear they’d rather be doing nearly anything besides listening to me read that story. Of course, I gave up and they scampered away to do what interested them. And it nearly broke my heart.
I’m getting that from the little one and it is heartbreaking.I hope that he will sit and listen eventually.
It’s crazy from the girls because they read the same type of story, and some of them have been very recently published.
Let’s see how it continues with the young man.
I’m sure that some day your granddaughters will begin to actively listen to your recommendations. It very well could just be the age that they are at. I’m glad that your grandson has brought you some positive affirmation lately.
It really doesn’t matter. The girls have never been anywhere near as close to me as the oldest grandson, who was with me continually, not that. I haven’t tried. Their lives have just been different. The older one stayed with me off and on two years ago and she still confides in me sometimes, but it runs hot and cold. Although I see her sister a lot and she’s been staying here, we speak, but don’t converse, hard as I try. The young man hasn’t been very forthcoming about himself or his life, but hi’s an adult and in NV; he knows that other family members come to me all the time.I think that he’s trying to avoid stressing me but also assert some independence, which is natural.
Recently my granddaughter told me she saw a copy of a book I’d read to her as a child, and she bought it for her daughter. It made me happy.