by Melissa Wynn

We should all take time now and then to thank the special seniors in our lives for all the timeless traditions we so often take for granted. Myths and legends, tall tales and lullabies, nursery rhymes, secret recipes and core family values are all slowly woven into the fabric of our children’s lives with threads left trailing behind from our ancestors of long ago. My great great granddaughter, whom I will most likely never meet, might just bake my German Chocolate Cake someday, if I take time to teach my granddaughter to make it when she visits next summer.

My own grandfather was certainly one of my heroes and most profound teachers. He was a very gifted poet who always inspired and encouraged me, and all his own children, to write. Not just to write but to open our souls on the paper so our work would be gripping, naked and true. Go real or go home was his basic, though sometimes abrasive, outlook on the world. I guess I also owe him some thanks for pulling my once young head out of the clouds. I was fascinated by this little old man that seemed to know how to do and fix everything. My own children later looked at my own father with admiring eyes and spent many a summer afternoon weaving their threads into the tapestry of knowledge with Grandpa. Those are moments we all treasure and the ones that matter most in the end, for it is what we share of ourselves that survives for generations.

If you wonder what it was like back in the days before television and video games, ask your grandfather. If your grandson can’t see past the end of the latest gadget attached to his head or hands, take him outside to toss the ball around and share some tales from back in those days. Maybe even take him fishing or teach him the difference between cricket songs and croaking frogs on a warm autumn evening; you know, the things that were sewn into our tapestry by older relatives like that vanishing parental command “Go outside and play”. Wonder to yourself now and then just what may be lost if YOU fail to share it. Spin the threads you will leave trailing with mindful intent. Share your treasured songs, memories and traditions with all those you love. They will shine for generations in your special family tapestry of knowledge.