School papers and similarly sentimental stuff

School papers and similarly sentimental stuff

During my daughters’ school years, I kept all the papers and projects they brought home from school. Everything. Spelling tests, stories, handwriting practice (they did that back then), certificates earned for field day and perfect attendance, report cards for each quarter of each year.

I kept it all. Times three. All in cardboard boxes in a storage space beneath the house we lived in for the duration of the girls’ school years. Lots of …

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In other news: On Botox, Thailand, and ALS

In other news: On Botox, Thailand, and ALS

In the first post I published here after returning from summer break, I shared a recap of some of the bigger changes that took place while I was away from the blog.

I didn’t tell you everything, though. A couple happenings just didn’t seem to fit in the bits I previously passed along. Those being the following…

BOTOX

I got Botox shots in June! In my …

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Summer break ends: What changed while I was away

Summer break ends: What changed while I was away

Grandma’s Briefs is back! Yep, the summer break I announced at the start of June is officially over.

While I was away from the site, a few changes took place. Some big, some small. Here’s a (relatively) quick update:

For starters, one blog change is that Grandma’s Briefs hit the 10-year mark in July! Hard to believe but true, as you can see from my very first post, published a decade ago.

Another blog change is that you’ll see a few new faces in the Meet the Family section of the sidebar, those being of Andrea’s new …

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Flashback: Sink, swim, or hold on!

Flashback: Sink, swim, or hold on!

Dear readers: This flashback feature originally appeared on Grandma’s Briefs March 4, 2010. Update: I’m still holding on “with a steel-plated grip because I have no other option.” How about you? Thank you for reading my rerun.

Back in the '80s, before the real estate market crash that marked the end of that decade, I worked for a mortgage company. Business was good, and we were rewarded well by the company's owner.

One of the bigger rewards we once received was a day offwork ... and on the owner's boat. On a day we should be processing loans, the entire office (it was a small office) would get to don bathing suits and hang out at the reservoir, on a boat, sipping beer in the sunshine.

I didn't want to go. I really did not want to go.

I didn't want to go because despite having been born in Minnesota…

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Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month: My MS and me

Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month: My MS and me

March is Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month. Though I have MS, I don’t write much about it because, frankly, it’s long been just part of who I am, not what defines me. There are far more informative bloggers when it comes to all things MS—my dear friend Cathy of An Empowered Spirit foremost in my mind—so I typically stick with grandma-focused sorts of stuff.

Yet, with MS becoming a bigger (sometimes overwhelmingly so) focus of my life in the time since last year’s MS Awareness Month, I figured I’d spend at least one post sharing the relatively recent changes to my MS and me. Perhaps doing so will put…

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Goodbye, Mom, plus GRAND Social No. 327 link party for grandparents

Goodbye, Mom, plus GRAND Social No. 327 link party for grandparents

Goodbye, Mom

Yesterday family and friends said a final farewell to my mom — Gramma to my girls, Nonnie to her younger grandkids, Sweet Ann to her sisters and friends, Goofy (or Obnoxious, Opinionated, Absolutely Off The Wall) Ann to others.

Regardless of the many monikers, Patricia Ann Kelly left an impression on all who knew her, an aching heart in those who loved her dearly and lost her too soon.

A mere sketch of my mama, i.e., her obituary:

PATRICIA ANN KELLY
August 25, 1941 ~ November 4, 2018

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Risque rehab

Risque rehab

On Monday I visited my mom in the rehabilitation facility where she’s been staying since an especially difficult setback in her lung cancer journey a few weeks ago.

As I sat on the edge of the bed next to her, we perused the papers left by a CNA which listed various activities meant to get the patients up and about and socializing. I read the options for group entertainment to her.

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Getting real... plus GRAND Social No. 321 link party for grandparents

Getting real... plus GRAND Social No. 321 link party for grandparents

Getting real

My mom is struggling to survive stage 3 lung cancer. My firstborn will soon deliver her firstborn any day now. Somewhere in between my utter despair regarding the one end of life’s spectrum and my sheer delight related to the other is the space where I, a writer and blogger, should be writing and blogging.

But I don’t feel like…

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Disrupt aging: Today's grandmas smash the stereotype... even when embracing it

Disrupt aging: Today's grandmas smash the stereotype... even when embracing it

Disclosure: This post made possible with support from AARP's Disrupt Aging. All opinions are my own.

When I first started my blog in 2009, one of the "editorial guidelines" I set for myself was that I would not post photos of myself on my website. At that time I had been a grandma for a little over a year, and in those twelve-plus months, when I shared my grandma status with strangers—retail clerks, random folks encountered while out and about, friends-in-the-making, and so forth—I was more often than not met with the comment, "You don't look like a grandma."

As a goal for my blog was to establish myself as a go-to guide for all things related to the grandmother lifestyle, I determined that—based on such comments—posting pictures of myself might…

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Flashback: 14 reasons to smile about being a long-distance grandma

Flashback: 14 reasons to smile about being a long-distance grandma

Dear readers: This flashback feature originally appeared on Grandma's Briefs July 1, 2014. As I'm missing my desert-dwelling grandsons today, it serves as a good reminder that there are at least fourteen things to celebrate about the long-distance grandma status. Thank you for reading this rerun.

Being a long-distance grandma can be hard on a grandmother's heart at times. There are, however, several perks to having plenty of miles between Grandma and her sweeties. Here are fourteen of them.

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