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Name-Calling

25 July 2007

When my family visited us for Christmas this past year, we teased my mom by calling her Grandma to Tyson. Even though she has been harassing me about grandchildren for at least the past five years (with little or no regard for my relationship status at the time of inquiry, I might add) I don’t think she ever thought of herself as a grandmother — to her, after 28 years of kids, “grandma” means her mom, which means old and more than slightly neurotic.

We’d take turns trying to teach him who she was. “Tyson, where’s your grandma? THERE she is!” And he would wiggle his way over to her, thinking that her squeals of protest were actually ones of delight at being HIS grandma. I mean, who wouldn’t want to be Tyson’s grandma?

So, during her most recent visit, I really laid the “grandma-ing” on. After all, she’s got to get used it sometime. I think she was still in that phase where the reality of grand-parenthood hadn’t sunk in, and I could tell that even though she was excited and happy about it, she was still adjusting to the idea of such a senior title. I thought I was going to have to refer her to Grandma Marge for some advice on transitioning.

It wasn’t until the first time I had to refer to both grandmas in the same conversation that I realized having two of them (plus two grandpas) with the same “names” just isn’t going to do. I’ve never been a big fan of the cutesy nicknames for family members. We’ve always been a strictly “Mom/Dad/Grandma/Grandpa/Aunt/Uncle” sort of clan. Any necessity to differentiate between families was handled on a last name basis. But something about that just doesn’t feel right in this case.  Plus, since three of MY four grandparents are still around, it’s even more confusing on my side of the family.

I decided that, since Tim’s parents are already grandparents and go by the standard aliases with Alex, that it would be a good idea to use something different for my parents… we just had to find something we all liked. The fate was sealed when my mom, sister and I were walking around Old Town and found some grandparent books in a store that had different variations of the titles on the inside cover art. We picked “Nana” (like banana, without the “buh”) for my mom & “Pops” for my dad. I like ’em. Still hip & young, just like they are, but definitely in the grandparental realm of nicknaming.

Of course, G&G Olson could take this opportunity to choose new GP monikers for themselves if Alex agrees. 🙂 What does/did everyone else call their grandparents?

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. szdcps82 permalink
    25 July 2007 16:10

    my grandparents were always grandpa sam and grandma estelle on my dad’s side, and grandpa phil and grandma margaret on my mom’s side.

    but nana and pops are cuter 😉

  2. .Bittersweet. permalink
    26 July 2007 07:48

    I didn’t know all of my granparents but my Dad’s Mom and Dad were Nano and Pops. And the girls will call my Mom and Dad Grammie and Pops. =)

  3. Mandy permalink
    26 July 2007 08:34

    Mom goes by Nana (actually Ba-Nana lately) and Doug goes by GrandDD. The 2 other sets of grandparents go by Mema and PopPop and Gran and PaPaw. So complicated for poor little Lauren to remember, but I think she’s got it down!

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