The four-generation barbershop

Every day, I read what journalists around the world are reporting about grandparents and their families. Here are some stories that gripped me recently.

A barbershop for the generations

Bob Townsend of Summersville, West Virginia practically grew up in the barbershop that his father opened in town during the Great Depression. Now, he owns the shop and employs his daughter, son-in-law, and grandson there.

But they don’t all cut the same way.

Bob still uses a straight razor, a technique that he calls “a dying art.” His daughter, Marsha, works mainly on women. And her son, Bradley, has mastered the back-of-the-head designs that teenaged boys prize, like the Nike and Under Armour logos.

Bradley started working for his grandpa soon after he finished school.

“I was still making my mind up in high school, but I’m glad I did,” Bradley said. “It’s been a lot of fun and I enjoy working with family.”

The Register-Herald • October 9, 2016

96-year-old Tallahassee woman votes with first-time voter granddaughter

Josephine Naspinski, who was born the very year women were granted the right to vote, cast her ballot earlier this month for Hillary Clinton alongside her 18-year-old granddaughter, Grace, who was voting for the first time and who also supported Clinton.

“I’m very privileged to be able to vote for the first woman president,” said Josephine.

Grace had returned home from college so the family could vote together.

“I didn’t think I’d live to see my granddaughter vote,” said Josephine. “But it was an honor.”

WCTV • November 4, 2016

Helping with grandchildren can be a blessing and a burden

“Many of us are trying to figure out how much help, how often, we should provide to the offspring we never imagined having,” writes Sandra Martin, a grandmother and author who lives in Toronto. “We fought hard for work-life balance. Should we abandon those goals when our kids need help with their children?”

The Globe and Mail • November 3, 2016