How to Inspire the Next Generation

How to Inspire Gardening

From one generation to the next we have the opportunity to learn new things all the time.

Information is at our fingertips and for some reason there’s still a majority of people who can’t boil an egg or mend a loose button.  Simple skills have become a lost art and as a result society has become lazy.

How does one inspire the next generation?  It’s a matter of stepping up, teaching and spending time with one another by sharing knowledge with our children and grand-children.  That’s what my grandmother did and it changed my life.

When I think back to my adolescents and everything she passed on, I lacked appreciation; I remember her saying, “People will need these skills one day and you will share them.”  This statement was repeated often and always encouraged me to listen up even if I couldn’t see the value.

After she passed in 2004 I began connecting everything she taught with basic survival skills, things like gardening, cooking, and caring for the home.

I knew how to boil an egg at the age of 6, mend a loose button and later create a pretty home.  She was always by my side, teaching and I was like a sponge soaking it all in.

Proverbs 22.6 Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.

From gardening to cooking and even creating nice things my grandmother saw something in me and took the responsibility upon herself to invest her time.

Most weekends and summers were spent at her home learning new skills while helping in the garden.  These experiences changed my life and I’m thankful she took it upon herself to share that knowledge.

It was those years that grounded and helped me see this world in a light that is often never seen.  Too much time is wasted on “noise” and we never really learn or grow from those experiences.  They seem to deplete our energy and leave us empty.

There’s never been a better time than now to begin fresh with the next generation. Spend time with those children and grand-children so future generations can be more than what they ever dreamed possible.

Inspire the next generation through activity, do this by listening and teach skills in a fun way that encourages a positive result.

I’m a believer that everything begins at home, good or bad it all starts there.  So, whether you’re a stay at home mom, a working mom, an empty nester or grandmother it’s time to open your heart just a little more and reach out.  Right at home, right now…

Don’t waste the day shopping together, spend the day creating, learning and having fun.

Cook or Create Together

Kids Love to Cook and Create

Most kids have a natural desire to cook and create; the kitchen is a great place to begin. My friend CD, at CD’s Country Living is always making something fun on her blog and this rhubarb crisp would be an easy teachable recipe for kids.

Fresh Rhubarb always grew in our family garden and my mom made everything from jam, pie and crisp treats like this one.

Baking was an absolute favorite activity when I was a kid and my mom did a great job teaching me the ropes.  I always looked forward to holiday baking and remember the year she turned over the cookie baking to me.

I was about 12, thinking I won the lottery. It was a lot of work; this experience made me thankful for the opportunity to shine.

Crafting was another thing my mom and I shared together, it was mostly small projects around Christmas but it was an opportunity to learn new skills and have fun at the same time.  I LOVED that!

My friend Patti at Hearth and Vine recently created a beautiful wall hanging with dried flowers.  This is a fantastic project for kids because you can choose flowers and items right from the yard or take a nature walk and discover even more natural beauty to gather.

Projects like this encourage time together and create lasting memories in addition to seeing how to put things together.

teaching Kids new Skills

Older Kids Are like Sponges for New Skills

If you’re kids or grand-kids are older they should have a longer attention span to handle more difficult projects.  Teach skills they could one day use to benefit their lives and who knows it could bring forward a sense of purpose.

My friend Karen from To Work with My Hands does a great job incorporating her kids in many projects. In this case her daughter learned how to flip a piece of furniture and her project turned out to be amazing.  I was blown away by this project and noticed her daughter has a great eye for detail.

Outdoor Activity like Gardening

It goes without saying that my love for gardening came from years of learning Grandma’s simplistic style.  By giving me tips and small tasks, I was able to help at a young age and over the years gardening became very natural like waking up in the morning.

As I matured those simple tips began enhancing my own gardening journey and the value in those lessons also grew my confidence.

Amazing things can happen when we inspire the next generation but we have to first make it happen.  We have to stop leaving all these details up to someone else and begin seeing value in those around us.

So, the next time those kids walk through the door, find a project you can connect through and let the learning begin.   It’s you who can inspire the next generation.

How to Inspire the Next Generation and why It's important.


  1. Patti says:

    What a beautiful article. You truly have the gift of writing.

    You were so blessed to have a grandmother so generous with her time and wisdom. For me it was my mom. She taught me all about cooking, gardening, sewing and more.

    I was also a girl scout for years and later a leader. I learned a ton of basic survival skills through scouting. I’m so sad to see that the scouts are dying out. I’ll have to take a page from your grandmother and pass those skills on to my girls and hopefully their children on day.

    Thanks for sharing my dried flower wall hanging. It was one of my favorite pieces this year.

    1. Carole says:

      Thank you, what a nice compliment. “Generous with her time” What a powerful statement! Passing on those skills is life changing for all involved, as Martha says Stewart says, “It’s a good thing.” Have a great weekend and I love that dried flower project.

  2. CD says:

    What a truly inspiring article, Carole! You were truly so lucky to have a Grandmother who devoted her heart and life to make sure you had all the tools you needed for an amazing life. I’m sure she was and will always be so proud of you! I never really had a mentor in my younger years but I did have an employer in my early twenties that took me under her wing and taught me so many amazing ‘secrets’ about cooking and baking. I cherished each and every moment that I was able to spend and learn with her. I hope I can pass on some of these skills to my grandson. He’ll be spending a week with me soon and I just can’t wait! Thank you so much for sharing my rhubarb crisp recipe. It definitely is one of those recipes that keeps getting passed down from generation to generation. I hope you spend some of your time off relaxing. You definitely deserve it! Hugs!

    1. Carole says:

      Relaxing… funny thing I told Robert the other day I need to do more of that and why I decided to take a little break. Glad you enjoyed this and thanks for sharing your experience in your twenties because many don’t realize that you can mentor anyone. It doesn’t have to be family could even be a neighbor kiddo. Have a great week with your grandson I bet you have all kinds of fun planned. Enjoy!!

  3. Karen says:


    I think our childhoods were probably very similar. My grandmother was such a life investor too. She poured a lot of who she was into me during the 10 years of my life that she was living. Sadly, I didn’t get the benefit of her wisdom and guidance in my teen and adult years, but I treasure the memories from my childhood spent with her. And it’s so interesting sometimes to realize that some of the things I do and some of the characteristics I have were forged in those early years by her side. I wish everyone could experience what we were blessed to have. I think your grandmother would be so proud of you!

    Thank you for including Hannah and my project in your post. I hope I can be as much of a life-giving influence in both my own kids, and one day the lives of grandchildren as our grandmothers were in ours. Thanks for sharing such a moving post and stirring the heart-warming memories.

    1. Carole says:

      Hannah is awesome and really does have an eye for detail and you do amazing bringing that out in her. In all your kids Karen you are an amazing person! I get the characteristic links, I said something the other day and Robert just smiled saying, “That’s something your grandmother would have said.” Feel so fortunate that he and both our kids had the opportunity to spend time with her too. Glad you enjoyed and thanks for letting me use your images. Hugs!

  4. mickie mclaugthlin says:

    This is truly a heartwarming article. It took me back MANY YEARS ago to working with my mother. There were 7 girls in my family and I was the laziest one. At the time all I wanted to do was play with my sisters and didn’t appreciate the work it took to keep our big family going. I hated drying dishes and also washing jars (LOL) but mostly I hated weeding the garden and often pulled up vegetable plants just to show how mad I was about having to do that chore. The only thing I didn’t complain about was ironing as I could listen to music and watch American Bandstand on the B&W TV while I ironed. Needless to say I was the problem child. I guess what I’m trying to say is that I still remember a lot of her sage advice about how and why to do things. She has to be pleased to know that I am an avid gardener now. As I work in my gardens I often think of her and the huge garden she tended just to ensure we had good food to eat. Thank you for sharing the stories about your sweet grandma .

    1. Carole says:

      Thank you for sharing we sound a lot alike. I was the kid in grandma’s yard making rainbows with the garden hose when she wasn’t looking and always asking, “is it time for a lunch break?” I made her smile so that has to count for something. When she could finally get me to focus I was a good helper but much like you I just really wanted to play. Memories are a wonderful thing they keep us grounded. Enjoyed this and so glad you like my stories. Hope your weekend is nice , Carole

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