October 14 – Reading to My Grandmother








by Nancy Hinshaw

When I was about 5 years old my father’s mother came to visit. The only time I remember her coming up to see us. She came up to Indiana from Bath County, Kentucky. I was thrilled that my uncle brought her. I took her on a tour of my house and introduced her to all my dolls. We had a tea party and only she was the special guest.

After the tea party I asked her if she would like to read some of my Golden books. She looked at me kind of odd then said she had never learned to read, never felt the need. I was a little puzzled. I thought everyone could read.

As I watched her rocking back and forth in the big rocking chair my other grandma sat in most of the time a bright idea crossed my mind. I climbed up on her lap and I read my Pokey the Little Puppy book to her. We laughed at the story and pictures together. After that she encouraged me to get more and read to her. That day we read all of my books and had a great time until it was bedtime.

The next morning my uncle took her back to Kentucky. Although it was the last time I saw her alive it was a memory that has been engraved in my mind. Many occasions have come and gone when I read I see that moment of our special time together.

Nancy Hinshaw is retired nurse, married to a retired state trooper, and the mother of 2 sons and 1 grandson. She lives in the mountains of North Carolina.

5 responses to “October 14 – Reading to My Grandmother

  1. How very poignant! A lovely story, and a precious memory, depicted with great tenderness. I’ll bet your grandmother remembered that day for the rest of her life, too.

  2. So very sweet. Lucky you. Lucky grandmother.

  3. I’m glad she had the courage to tell you that she couldn’t read instead of making some excuse. It was a beautiful memory for you and I’m sure for you as well. (I had the Pokey the Little Puppy book too.)

  4. Oops that should be “It was a beautiful memory for you and I’m sure for HER as well.”

  5. This is so sweet, and what a treat to have shared those moments together. (I still like reading children’s books!) My mother never learned to read in English very well, and now that she is in her 80s with dementia I sometimes read parts of her own memoir to her. We both love that.

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