I’m Sha-Sha: What are the Grandparent Nicknames in Your Family?

What are the grandparent nicknames in your family? sha shaHow do they compare to other traditional, trendy and international grandmother and grandfather nicknames?

Recently I got this cute email question from Premium member Kathy from Northridge, CA: “I am curious as to how you got your Grandma name of “Sha-Sha.” In my family both my grandmothers had special names.  My maternal grandmother’s name was Marian. She had a cat named Kitty Mit. According to family lore my grandmother would always say to my oldest cousin, “You’re my little Kitty mitty,” and my cousin ended up calling her “Minnie” because of that. My paternal grandmother had the initials MD (she too was a Marion). Her friends gave her the nickname of Doc so my brother and I called her Grandma Doc.

I only had one grandfather (my paternal grandfather died at 59 when my dad was 17) so he just got the name Grandpa. Now when my nephew was a toddler he started out by identifying my parents as Big Grandma and Little Grandma. He didn’t quite get the gender reference straight. My father was 6-4 feet tall; hence he was “big” and my mom was 5 foot 3 so she was “little.”  Now my nephew is a father himself and my great-nephew calls his grandmas “LaLa (whose name is Linda) and YaYa (whose name is Cathy..and no we are not Greek!). We don’t know how he came up with those names but they are stuck with them! LOL The Grandpas are Papa Ted & Mike.”

Well, since you asked….Davy started calling me Sha Sha as soon as he learned to talk, and like so many grandparent names, it stuck. (I fully admit I was SO anxious for him to call me anything that I took the first name he offered.) Now if anyone tries to refer to me as Grandma he scowls at them and asks why in the world they are calling me some foreign name.

I discussed this on the free Genealogy Gems Podcast Episode 118, and on the next Episode #119 I shared lots of wonderful stories from listeners about their terms of endearment. Kathy’s is right up there in being adorable! I LOVE Big Grandma and Little Grandma. Kids know what they see!

Kathy’s question got me Googling, of course. Guess what I found? The Ultimate Guide to Grandparent Names. This free webpage lists out common traditional and trendy nicknames for both grandmothers and grandfathers. You’ll also find a list of grandparent nicknames from other languages, too (I see that “Ya-Ya” is a Greek nickname for grandmother, as Kathy said).

Share this message with your favorite or fellow grandparent!

“My Name is Jane:” Heritage Scrapbook Celebrates Family Tradition

This mini heritage scrapbook celebrates a family name–Jane–which has been passed down through several generations. Author Sunny Morton shares a beautiful keepsake that she has treasured, and that you can make too.

My daughter’s middle name is Jane.

And so is mine.

So is my mother’s, and her mother’s.

In fact, we can document several generations with this name. We are “the Janes,” and we are very proud of that.

So I was thrilled when my aunt Judie (mother of a Jane) made this little mini-scrapbook for my mother. It’s an accordion scrapbook style, with several little fold-out pages that it make it fun to explore. 

It’s mostly filled with pictures, but Judie did write a delightful poem that can be appears at the beginning of the book. 

The poem begins: “Grandma named my momma Jane. It passed through my grandma’s side. Every generation had one. A sign of women’s pride.”

I treasure this mini-scrapbook and the thoughts and feeling of the woman in my family who gave it to me. It’s personal nature reminds me of the close personal bond we share. Isn’t t sweet how a simple thoughtful gift can do so much to remind those we love of the value we place on our relationship with them.

I hope you’re already thinking about who in your family would appreciate a little book like this from you!

This kind of scrapbook is easily adapted and simplified–or made even more elaborate. What a perfect little keepsake it is! 

Thanks to the power of YouTube, you can following along with the video tutorial shown below and whip one up yourself.

This would also be a perfect craft to do with the children in your family. Or perhaps you have a family reunion coming up on your calendar. By pulling together the materials ahead of time and designating a special table, your extended family could have enjoy making memories together as they capture memories from days gone by. 

OK, so let’s not spend any more time talking about it. Click the watch the video below and let’s get started making our own mini scrapbook:

More Inspiration

Did you love this as I much as I did?

You can get even more creative inspiration by checking out our Pinterest boards:

One of my favorite ideas can be found at the Family History Craft Projects. It’s how to turn old broken watches into family heirloom bracelets. What a wonderful idea! I have several of those laying around in my drawers at home. Lisa Louise Cooke made one using watches she received from her grandmother and shared a photo of it in the newsletter. 

And the Genealogy Gems newsletter is indeed a great place to get more ideas.  Click here to sign up for our free email newsletter where Lisa regularly share inspiring ideas like these.

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