Diane Prather: Great book for a grandmother

Diane Prather

Diane Prather's columns appear in the Craig Daily Press and Saturday Morning Press. You can call her at 824-8809.

— This week's book would be a great gift for a grandmother or a grandmother-to-be. My sister, Darlene, gave it to me awhile back.

"Grandmothers are like Snowflakes : No Two are Alike: Words of Wisdom, Gentle Advice and Hilarious Observations" was compiled (and partially written) by Janet Lanese.

The cover of this 117-page book is designed with snowflakes. So are the inside cover pages.

The book is divided into six sections, each one with a heartwarming title, such as "Grandmas Then and Now," and "Our Little Angels."

"What's so simple even a child can manipulate? Why, a grandmother, of course." Observations such as this are included in each section.

The reader will find words of wisdom and advice, poems, things only a grandmother can do, how grandmothers pass on family history and even directions for acting like a child.

Some of the book's contents have been written by Grandma Jan, the book's author, but others are from famous people, such as Milton Berle, Lady Bird Johnson, George Bush, Dr. Joyce Brothers and Jean-Jacques Rosseau. And there are more, too.

Children even get to have their say. Mark, 6, says "My nana can run the microwave better than any person I know." And Tammy, 8, writes "I love my grandma's wrinkles. Every one tells a story."

One of my favorite parts of the book is by Delia Ephron, who lists the necessary steps to eat spinach, an ice cream cone and chocolate chip cookies as a child would.

It's evident that Ephron understands children. A child is apt to eat the cookies while reading a book on the bed, so to mimic a child, you'd need to "place the cookies next to you on the sheet so the crumbs get on the bed." The rest of the cookie-eating directions are just as comical.

Grandma Jan knows how important it is to pass family history on to grandchildren. She's included six "loving legacy" activities for grandmothers to share with their grandchildren. One, for example, is to bring out memorabilia, such as yearbooks, records and clothing.

This heritage section of the book also includes an appeal from George Bush. He wants grandparents to tell grandchildren stories of the past, including their own.

The book is jam packed with heartwarming tidbits. Near the book's end are two lists by Grandma Jean. Each list has 10 things a parent can do to become popular with adult children (such as showing respect) or plummet to the bottom of the popularity list (for example, by being critical).

I love this book.

This book is a sequel. The first one was "Grandmothers are like Snowflakes."

At the time the book was written, Janet Lanese was a very busy grandmother. She worked as a real estate broker, writer, co-hostess for a local TV station, and contributing editor for parenting and religious magazines.

This week's book is a Dell Trade Book (1996). In hardcover, it costs $12. The book is available at Downtown Books in Craig.

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