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My kids were upgraded!

I recently picked up my boys from visiting their grandparents in Atlanta, Georgia as well as a quick visit to their great- grandparents in Sumter, SC. They are truly blessed to have great- grandparents still alive and active to enjoy them. I was so happy to see them. They seemed to grow a bit since the last time we saw them and a bit more mature; they were with their grandparents for three weeks, a nice break for my wife and I (that will be another blog later).

It seemed that this break from their parents did them well. Yet, they came back...different. Number one...we were no longer being answered with 'yes', but now 'yes sir' and 'yes mam'. Their grandmother taught them that teaching them to add 'sir' and 'mam' will go a long way in showing respect to others, especially those who are older or of authority. Number two...when they made a mistake, it wasn't the usual 'I'm sorry', but rather 'I apologize'. Grandmom told them that they need not speak that they are 'sorry'. Being sorry is for losers! We asked our oldest one night where did they learn these new manners. He said Grandmom taught us these 'better manners'. Okay...there's more.

They came back a lot more helpful around the house, like picking up dishes without being asked. Yes, they had done that in the past, but it just seemed different. Number three...they came back...fatter! What were they eating down there? Sorry, here's the better question -- what were they eating here? Better question -- were they eating enough here? Man, they came back different...for the better.

My boys weren't disrespectful. They were never slobs around the house. But man, did their grandmother bring about some fresh perspectives. And they are welcomed! I didn't have to worry about them being spoiled by grandmom. She was a teacher of over twenty-five years. In fact, my parents and grandparents are all teachers. What she added was an 'upgrade' to my boys culture, a welcomed upgrade. My challenge is to continue what has been taught. I know culture has changed. 'Mam' and 'Sir' are rarely used anymore. Yet, it feels weird to hear our boys use those terms. It feels even stranger to hear them call my wife and I by those terms. I forget that I had to address my parents the same way. Maybe its a southern thang! Or maybe its a respect thang!

Lend me you thoughts. I have no off season in knowing more...BTW, please forgive me for saying 'Sorry' previously; I should have apologized. Sorry about that, I mean I apologize...oh, forget it! My bad!


  1. I love the Southern Mam and Sir use. I try to have my kids use it, but not very successfully. I appreciate that possitive influence your elders are giving to you and your fam!

  2. I, too, sent my children to my parents in Mississippi for two weeks over the summer. I try to send them every summer because I believe it is important for them to have a intimate relationship with them, as I did with my grandparents. So I try to send them every year. They (kids and parents) had a blast. The most notable thing I can think of regarding these visits is that the standards are different. The things they let these kids get away amazes me. Take food for example. When I was growing up, I was NOT allowed the luxury of menu choices. My mother's motto was, "if you are really hungry,you will eat whatever I cook." Fast forward 35 years later, and all I hear is " tell me what they (the children) really like to eat, so I can make that." Whaaaaat? But you know what, my grandparents were also super indulgent and I can remember how my mother used to grumble about how here mother never treated her and her siblings the way she treated me and my sister. It's so funny how things change. More than anything, the change is that I have become my mother, scoffing at the idea that they should have a choice and she (my mother) has become my grandmother, bending over backwards to make them happy.

  3. May I send my kids to your parents?


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