2012 My Favorite Older Friend Essay Contest
For the 25th year in a row, Wesley Gardens invited fifth-graders in the Rochester area to write an essay about their favorite "older" friend. Students were instructed to pay attention to composition, originality and how they capture the essence of their relationship with their older friend.
They received hundreds of essays about beloved grandparents, special teachers and influential neighbors. The panel of judges had the challenging task of selecting the ten best essays. The decision was not easy, but we think you'll agree that the essays are wonderful!
In addition, Genesee Valley Parent Magazine is proud to be a sponsor of the "Older Friends" essay activity for a second year in a row. Our June issue of GVP includes the top three essays. On these next three pages you can read the top three essays as well as the seven Outstanding Achievement selections. Congratulations to all these aspiring students. Our thanks also to Karen Higman, GVP contributing writer, for her participation as one of this year's judges.
PAGE 1 -- Riley Lusk, Mary Bedzyk, and Anna Latshaw - This Page
PAGE 2 -- Alexa Bosco, Sarah Dunnigan, Mae Kesselring - Click Here
PAGE 3 -- Ashley Moorehouse, Melanie Pitcher, Quentin Tan, Brianna Vella - Click Here
Riley Lusk - Allen Creek School | Teacher: Mrs. Matthews
“The Best Grandma Ever”
Are you looking for the most spectacular, fun, and positive grandma ever? Well stop looking, because you’ve come to the right essay. The fun thing is she isn’t actually my grandma! My dad’s mother moved away when he was younger and he didn’t have a mom to talk to. He started spending time at his friend Tom’s house, and soon, Tom’s mom was like his mom too. Yes, that Eileen Farlow is the same one that is my Grandma Farlow today!
One reason that my Grandma is the best, is that even though she has actual grandchildren in Texas, she treats us like her real grandkids here. She goes to church with us and moved to an apartment right across the street! She drops everything to do my hair for special occasions (she is very fancy) and even goes on vacation with us each summer! She calls us every Sunday night while she’s away.
My second reason is that she is always there for my family and is very supportive. No matter what happens, what you try, or what the outcome is, she always makes you feel extra special. She goes to every event for my brother and me. Grandma even takes care of my dog, Tucker (her furry grandchild).
Next, she is caring and generous. My birthday is Christmas Eve and she makes that day special, just for me. She knows me so well that she buys me presents I didn’t even know I wanted! She always makes our favorite foods each holiday and takes care of us on days off from school.
In conclusion, the best way to explain what makes my Grandma my favorite older friend is that she doesn’t have to love us, she chooses to love us! And she does it so well!
Mary Bedzyk , Jefferson Road School | Teacher: Mrs. Maragus
“My Favorite Older Person”
Although I hope every child has a favorite older person who is always there for them, I know that my grandmother is the best older friend anyone could ever have!
When I was little I couldn’t pronounce the letter “a” correctly, so I called her ‘Grmy’ and she called me “Mry.” This is still what we call each other, even though when we say it in public people look at us strangely!
Whenever I visit my grandma at her cottage, we put our kayaks in the shimmering lake and we watch the kingfishers dive, trying to catch the fish that flash like silver dollars in the water.
My grandma is the one who has had the patience to teach me how to cook.
We bake cookies from my great-grandmother’s cookbook and we make homemade jam together! Don’t tell my sister, but only I know the real ingredients to my grandma’s famous macaroni salad!
Part of our special bond is a sense of humor. My grandma knows what I think is funny, so she sends me comics with the names of the cartoon characters covered with white-out and the names of real people in our family written in! She always cracks me up!
Although my grandma is getting very old, she always has time for me. When my dad was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer last year, she helped me understand it better because she had breast cancer over ten years ago. Knowing she got through it makes me have hope for my dad.
I realize my ‘Grmy’ won’t be here for me forever, so I keep the memories we make together safe in my heart. My ‘Grmy isn’t just my grandmother, she’s my best friend!
Anna Latshaw, Allen Creek School | Teacher: Ms. Moore
“A Very Special Person”
The sun was hot as I pulled wretched weeds from the rear of my backyard. We worked with heads bent while filling garbage can after garbage can full of weeds as the sun baked our backs. We chatted and laughed despite the hot summer day. This was not one of my usual chores, but I went out of my way to help Betty anyways.
Betty Molesworth is a special person in my life. She lives right behind me and our yards back up to each other. We have only lived here less than two years, yet I have become good friends with her. She is eighty-one years old and walks our neighborhood every single day, which is how we first met. Betty is always very happy and very friendly which makes her fun to be around.
Sadly, a year and a half ago, her husband Jim passed away. Ever since, she has been alone. All of the jobs around the yard have been left for her to do and so I try to help her whenever I see her outside working. While we work together, we always chat about school and different flowers in the yard.
Recently, I have been in a club at school called Knit-Wits to learn how to knit and then donate the scarves to charity. Betty loves to quilt and knit and so when she learned that I am doing it, she helped me by giving me some pointers and showing me things she had made.
Last Christmas, Betty gave me a very special gift that is in my room to this day. She had made a pillow with my name quilted on one side and musical notes on the other side since I love piano.
This is why Betty is such a special person!