Archive for "Gramma Jamma’s Corner" Category

  • “I hate bedtime!” - 2013.10.27 ( Gramma Jamma's Corner )

    Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma)
    Grandma’s Point of View

    My favorite time of year – the golden days of autumn when the leaves turn the country side into a riot of gold and red and the school bell evokes joy and excitement in every Mom’s heart. Every September for over a decade, I welcomed the clang of the bell – that harbinger of schedule and order for my four-daughter household. By every October, I was mired in homework checks, clothing wars and bedtime clamor and that joy had somehow transformed into frustration and a lot of deep breaths. Read more »

  • Rainbows and the Pot of Gold - 2013.03.17 ( Gramma Jamma's Corner )

    Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma)
    Grandma’s Point of View

    Grandparents have a very unique place in their grandchildren’s lives – somewhere just between this world of adults and the rainbow over the doorway into the wonderful world of fairies, leprechauns and magic unicorns. As I stand at the entrance to a land of make believe and wishes that come true, I shake at the knees, quiver on the inside, and then square my shoulders with the responsibility of keeping the fun in a visit to Grandma’s without squashing their belief in Neverland. In his renowned book, Peter and Wendy, J.M.Barrie says that “a map of a child’s mind would resemble a map of Neverland, with no boundaries at all. No boundaries indeed! Read more »

  • Angels & Shepherds - 2012.12.23 ( Gramma Jamma's Corner )

    Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma)
    Grandma’s Point of View

    Thank goodness for angels and shepherds. Have you ever noticed that in most Christmas pageants the littlest ones are costumed as shepherds or angels and every year they sprinkle their childlike glow on the rest of us and our Christmas joy bubbles up inside and spills over and fills our hearts and homes with – laughter? That’s right, real belly laughs that start deep down and gurgle their way into our chests and then into our eyes and then, there it is, spilling out all over. Read more »

  • A Yoga Challenge - 2012.11.04 ( Gramma Jamma's Corner )

    Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma)
    Grandma’s Point of View

    My granddaughter shared one of the objectives in her school this year is to participate in 20 hours of aerobic exercise using different sports and activities. She has decided to include swimming so far. I suggested Zumba would be fun and we could do it together. I got “the face”. You know, that one – “thanks Grandma but really – that is not cool” in her eyes and a little smile/grimace on her lips. Of course, at twelve, she is bouncing between the little girl wanting to spend time with me to the almost teenager who just can’t understand why anyone would listen to Janis Joplin – ever! Now I might actually be able to discuss that one choice with her and even agree to some of her points, but, in the end, there is one very real barrier standing in the way – multiple generation gaps! Read more »

  • Spinning for the Over-60 Crowd - 2012.10.29 ( Gramma Jamma's Corner )

    Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma)
    Grandma’s Point of View

    My first Spin class was today. Much like my first Zumba class, I was distracted and headed out the door (at 5:30 AM!) without my workout wear which required a full trip back home to secure said shoes and towel. This made me technically 5 minutes late for my first class. As I walked in, the instructor greeted me with a fake smile and asked me if this was my first time. I answered – Yes (without the explanation formulating in my head that I haven’t even been on a real bike for over a decade!). The fake smile disappeared briefly – and, then, she rattled off the instructions and before my brain had heard any of them moved to the front of the room to start the class – ON TIME! Read more »

  • Zumba for Grandmas - 2012.10.18 ( Gramma Jamma's Corner )

    Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma)
    Grandma’s Point of View

    So, my first Zumba class.  First of all, I have never been in a recreation centre filled with parents, kids and various in-between-ers – at least not for the purpose of working out myself!  I lived in small towns most of my life and this is BIG CITY stuff to me!  Finding my way through the crowd and the labyrinth of hallways and running paths (yes, they run around this centre) was the first test.  I finally made it through the change room door.  Not too late to change my mind, I thought, as I contemplated getting almost naked in a public change room. Oh! Oh! – Didn’t come prepared with change for the lockers – was that a sign?  Finally decided I would just commit and stripped – well, not quite – but you get the picture (just blur out those parts!). Read more »

  • Comfort Food; Comforting Season - 2012.10.07 ( Gramma Jamma's Corner )

    Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma)
    Grandma’s Point of View

    So many of us Canadians turn to comfort food in the fall and winter – I think it is programmed into our DNA!  We switch from making salads to soup and I love it!  I think I am becoming one of those nostalgic people who relish in good old-fashioned traditions.  Soup, pasta, casseroles, stews – my spirit calls for that kind of comfort. Read more »

  • Rock On, Grandma and Grandpa - 2012.08.14 ( Gramma Jamma's Corner )

    Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma)
    Grandma’s Point of View

    Did you grow up to be the rock star or astronaut you wanted to be when you were in Grade 3? Or did you end up owning a music store or counting bacteria in a blood sample? For many of us, our adult interests mirrored our childhood aspirations although the interpretation changes somewhat over the years.

    I always dreamed of being a teacher. In my teen years I loved to tutor my peers in Math or English during summer vacation to help them pass their departmental exams. I read voraciously and put pen to paper for fun – spewing out poetry or prose. All things about education turned my crank – except studying. I was a geek in hiding. Did that have any bearing on my career of choice? You bet it did and now that I have spent years working at a post-secondary institution, advising students and coordinating programs, I can still say I love what I do. Education is my field of choice but a teacher I am not – at least not in the classroom! Read more »

  • You are Family - 2012.07.15 ( Gramma Jamma's Corner )

    Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma)
    Grandma’s Point of View

    Eleven years ago, when a tiny sweet cherub arrived amidst emergency calls and miles of tubes and alarms making me a grandmother, I was overcome with worry for my daughter and filled with emotion that she was now a Mom.  I hopped on a plane to make sure my own first born was doing OK and walked into a magical kingdom ruled by a brand new princess.  Although I still made all efforts to continue that Mom type care, I was swept away by this new little person with tiny fingers and the special warmth of her little body as she lay in my arms.  The thought then occurred to me – I was a grandmother, a new role to figure out, different from Mom for sure and nothing even remotely resembling baby boomer career woman.  Read more »

  • Summer Time! - 2012.07.08 ( Gramma Jamma's Corner )

    Eileen Hopkins (Gramma Jamma)
    Grandma’s Point of View

    Summer time  – warm mud squishing up between your toes, icy water spraying from the hose, hotdogs and marshmallows eaten with dirty hands, mosquitoes always buzzing nearby and your mom, calling you home before the 9 PM siren sounded.  Yep, summer in the 1950`s when my only concern was if my friends would be home so we could play.

    Summer in the 60`s meant we had wheels and could head to the lake for some sunbathing while we dreamt of summer romances.  It meant we could cruise up and down Main Street in small towns across the prairies, radios blaring, looking for action (although I can`t recall ever finding it!).  We stopped in the middle of the street to talk about nothing, squeezed six people into a 4-person booth and drank coke and ate fries and laughed at nothing. Read more »