The Grandmother Principles:
1. The grandmother way is the easy way.
2. Grandmothers already have tenure.
3. Everything comes to an end eventually.
4. A grandmother is a safe haven.
5. Theres nothing so simple that you cannot make it complicated if you really try.
6. The most powerful way to teach is by example.
7. People with real clout dont have to throw their weight around.
8. Grandmothers dont have to be politically correct.
9. When getting somebody else to do a task is more work than just doing it yourself, do it yourself.
10. Most arguments are about who is in charge.
11. Its always safe to talk to a grandmother.
12. Grandmothers delegate.
13. A grandmother is not a quarterback.
14. Somebody has to be the grown-up.
15. No sickness or injury is so bad that panic cant make it a lot worse.
16. There are secret stories that only grandmothers should know.
17. It will be finished when its finished.
18. Grandmothers plan for the long haul.
19. If it cant be done one way, it can be done some other way.
20. After you give people something, it belongs to them.
21. For grandmothers, the light doesnt have to be perfect.
Written with warmth, wit, and wisdom, this straightforward guide to grandmothering is based on the principles that all grandmothers need to know. These principles — commonsense aphorisms ranging from "The grandmother way is the easy way" to "Grandmothers dont have to be politically correct" — teach women how to think like grandmothers and discover the grandmotherly way to handle any situation that comes along in their lives. In the past women learned these skills by observing their own grandmothers. But in todays highly mobile society, fewer and fewer women have access to grandmother "role models." And that is why author Suzette Haden Elgin, an experienced grandmother of ten, has written this inspiring, information-filled book. She covers all aspects of grandmothering, including:
* Mediating family arguments
* Learning the art of growing old gracefully
* Saying no without feeling guilty
* Coping with emergencies
* Managing resources-money, time, and energy
* Being a long-distance grandmother
* Keeping the family history
* Teaching crafts to grandchildren
Dozens of sidebars provide invaluable tips on topics as diverse as traveling with kids, wonderful gifts that can be made on a copying machine, and the best grandparenting sites on the Internet. Illustrated with delightful cartoons that underscore the joys and challenges of grandmotherhood, The Grandmother Principles is an indispensable reference for — and a great comfort to — grandmothers of all ages and experience.
Suzette Haden Elgin, author of the best-selling Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense series and a grandmother of ten, has a Ph.D. in linguistics from the University of California San Diego, and is a novelist, poet, and artist. Founder and director of the Ozark Center for Language Studies, which she operates from her home in Arkansas, she is nationally recognized for her seminars and public speaking.