Sunday, September 10, 2017, is National Grandparents’ Day and there are many ways to celebrate this special holiday. While the nuclear family of the 1950s is no longer the common household in America, there are still many families where grandparents are part of the core household. For these families, honoring grandparents’ on National Grandparents’ Day is effortless. For many other families; however, grandparents may be far from their children and grandchildren, or may even live in senior communities. National Grandparents’ Day is a time to remember, honor, recognize, and visit lonely grandparents who may live in nursing homes, senior communities, or are in an environment where they may feel isolated and separated from their loved ones.
The best way to celebrate Grandparents’ Day is by spending time with grandparents. Because seniors have different needs, you will need to find a way to celebrate that is appropriate, safe, and healthy. For those with grandparents located in other countries, there are social media tools such as Skype or FaceTime that can help facilitate a get-together. Because grandparents have a life full of stories, wisdom, and advice to give, National Grandparents’ Day is a wonderful time to listen to grandparents share their stories.
Grandparents’ Day is always celebrated on the Sunday following Labor Day. It became a national observance on August 3, 1978. President Jimmy Carter signed National Grandparents’ Day into law. The observance was founded by Marian McQuade, a native of Virginia who worked for the West Virginia Commission on Aging and the Nursing Home Licensing Board. She wanted to create a national holiday that embraced the unique and special relationship held by grandparents and their grandchildren, while at the same time, helped combat the loneliness commonly felt by many seniors. Marian McQuade passed away at the age of 91. She suffered from Alzheimer’s disease and had 15 children, 43 grandchildren, and 15 great-grandchildren, according to the Washington Post.
There are many ways to celebrate Grandparents’ Day and those who no longer have living grandparents can volunteer their time and services with the elderly instead. Many seniors feel lost, abandoned, and are suffering from extreme loneliness. Whether volunteering your time in a nursing home or calling your own grandparents on National Grandparents Day, everyone should do their part and show their appreciation for their elders on this special day.
How are you going to celebrate National Grandparents’ Day? Please share your thoughts, opinions, and ideas below.
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