When I was born, all four of my grandparents, five of my great grandparents, and my nona, my great-great grandmother, were all still alive. As I grew up, my grandparents, three of my great-grandparents and my great-great grandmother were always around.
Knowing my 'greats' was such a blessing. My great-great grandmother, though she knew very little English, taught me that with hard work and a healthy lifestyle, one can live a long, happy life. She died when she was 101! Of my great-grandparents, I was closest to my grandmother's father. He was a gruff, serious man, but he had a soft spot for me. He taught me to love to read and to follow my heart. He was one of few people who encouraged me to be a teacher.
Three of my grandparents are still alive and ever present in my life. They are all thrilled now to be great-grandparents to my children. It's so exciting to see the cycle happening all over again!