No. 785



While it is not original with me, there is a saying that goes, “Show me the homes of a nation and I will show you what kind of nation you have.” It is in the home that love is fostered, character is taught and the direction for young lives is given.
I found a beautiful example of this in the lives of a couple by the name of Don and Anne Dierks, who live in Hot Springs Village, Ark. Anne is the author of a fantastic book titled “Granny Camp: How to Bond With Your Grandchildren.” Sometime back she sent me a copy in the mail. I was really impressed with her book. It has dozens of full-color photographs and the graphics and design just makes it truly a work of art, and that is just for starters. The content really makes it special.
The large color photo on the front cover says it all. This photo has seven of Don and Anne’s grandchildren, all girls, facing a large American flag with hands over their hearts saying the “Pledge of Allegiance.” This photo sets the tone, but this book is all about a Granny Camp that they hold each year for their 14 grandchildren, and have done so for more than a decade. While Don helps with the camp each year, the real genius of this truly unique camp is Anne, mother of four, and as previously noted, 14 grandchildren -- four boys and 10 girls.
While Anne has had no formal training as a teacher, nurse, art instructor, song director, coach or cook, she does them all because she has a heart’s desire to find a way to know her grandchildren through good clean fun and old-fashioned activities. She believes LOVE is the key to the success of this endeavor, and she wants other grandparents to pass their love to their grandchildren with the best adventure of their lives. This book is complete down to the last detail, including “How to Read This Book,” “What Is Granny Camp And Why Have It?”, “Who Can Come to Granny Camp?”, “What Are the Rules at Granny Camp?”, “What Do Campers Eat at Granny Camp?”, and “What Are Granny’s Helpful Hints?”
In the book you will find planning tips such as setting the date, distance and travel time, planning crafts, planning activities, making Granny Camp T-shirts, meal planning, and field trips, along with items to bring for the week of camp. She also talks about parents, telephone calls, clothes rules, sleeping rules, bathroom rules and computer rules, and then the Granny Story: Four Square Rule. And that is just for starters. In more than ten years of holding “Granny Camp” she has seen, been confronted with, or done it all, and she is willing to share it.
Of course, there is no way I can tell you everything that is in this fantastic book, but I will sum it up by saying that Anne and Don are using this quality time as a way to get to know and bond with their grandchildren, and to make a difference in the lives and their futures. As I said earlier, the key to success here is love.
There are a number of articles and columns that have already been written about Granny Camp, and they are all good, but I have a little different perspective. I see her Granny Camp, and hopefully others it will inspire, as a way to build leaders for tomorrow. If we want our children and grandchildren to have Godly values, character, integrity, and become great people, we have to teach them. To me, that is what Don and Anne are really doing.
You may order a copy of Granny Camp at The cost is $19.95 plus S&H, and worth it many times over.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: Jim Davidson is a public speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, AR 72034. To begin a bookcase literacy project visit You won’t go wrong helping a needy child.)