Several months ago I discovered a charming book called Grandmother Remembers by Judith Levy. The book, now in its 36th printing, makes it easy for grandmothers to record their history for future generations with fill-in-the-blank questions and space for photos.
I contacted Judith to find out how the book evolved. After her three children were grown, she decided to take a course in writing her family history. The class was loaded with grandparents who wanted to put their memories on paper for their grandchildren. But they were all having trouble because they weren’t writers.
Judith remembered her elementary school teacher gave prompts when she wanted the class to write. The teacher would say, “the thing I liked most about my summer vacation was………….” and everyone could write. A light bulb went off in her head, and Judith created Grandmother Remembers.
She wanted every grandmother to be able to take her grandchild on a journey through her life and say where she grew up, how she met grandfather, the birth of her child, and the birth of this beloved grandchild. Each section begins with a 4-line poem followed by prompts to help you tell your story. There are several blank pages at the end for things “I Forgot to Mention” and “Treasures I Have Saved for You.” This book will help your grandchildren realize their grandparents were not just born older people. They’ll see that the road they’re now walking on, is the very same road you walked on years before.
When Grandmother Remembers was first published in 1983, it reached #2 on the New York Times best seller list. It has since sold over three million copies and has been translated into five languages. Judith has also written Grandfather Remembers, Mom Remembers, Dad Remembers, and Our Chosen Child, a baby book for adopted children.
Judith currently lives in Florida with her husband and frequently visits her five grandchildren. She speaks to organizations on the value of preserving family history and is a frequent guest on local radio and television shows. Last year she published another in the series called Grandmother Remembers Holidays. Judith believes you’re never too old to make your dreams come true.