Grandparenting… Can life get any better?

Grandparenting… Can life get any better?

by Rachel Allison

I’m a fifty-nine year old grandmother to eight beautiful grandchildren.  My oldest grandchild is seven.  My youngest grandchildren are two-week old twins… Grandchildren are on my mind constantly these days.  Since I don’t have all the answers as to how to be the perfect “Nana” I would like to share a couple of things I have learned from other grandmother friends of mine…and I hope you will share some things YOU have learned and experienced.

One of my friends has seven children, and all of them live within just a few miles of her.  ( I would love to be so blessed!)  She said that her rule has always been, “I don’t babysit.  My children have sisters and sisters-in-law just as close as I am… They can all share babysitting responsibilities. “  At first glance it sounds like this woman is a disconnected grandma, but I have watched her in action.  She’s wonderful with her grandchildren, and they adore her.  She takes them to lunch for their birthdays.  She has a sleepover with all her potty-trained grandchildren once a month. She attends their ballgames and concerts, AND she gives them free piano lessons every week as long as they practice.  She sounds like a pretty good grandmother to me!

Another friend of mine has a small garden in her backyard that is dedicated to her grandchildren.  When they come to visit they all plant, care for, and harvest the vegetables together.  Her grandchildren are young, and they love this “grandma” activity.

Did I ever sit and swing for long periods with my children? Uhhhhh unfortunately “No!”  But recognizing my grandchildren’s needs and MY need for occasional down time, we often sit on our porch swing and visit for long periods of childhood/grandma discovery time.

To most everything we do, there is a learning curve that we all must experience.  Grand-parenting is no exception. Sharing ideas as to what works and what doesn’t work is always appreciated!

So it’s your turn…What have you experienced with your grandparents, or what have you done with your grandchildren that would inspire us to be and do better?  Please share your insights so that we can all learn to be the wonderful grandparents our grandchildren deserve.

4 Comments
  • Fairfacts
    Posted at 06:27h, 12 November Reply

    Grandkids need someone to just listen. You can’t get down on the floor and play with them like you did your kids, but you can listen to what they have to say. The world is all new to them, and they need someone with the patience and interest to hear about their discoveries.

  • Marguerite Meland
    Posted at 18:09h, 12 November Reply

    I have 5 amazing grandkids.. (Aren’t they all :). I adore them and they love me. The best thing is playing with them, either with toys or with our imagination. I had the great pleasure of teaching 4 of them Science at home.We did this for 5 years, until they moved away. I’m finding important to keep in touch with them individually-emails, skyping and phoning. Play games with them inside or outside. What a joy this summer to manage them getting 4 kites up in the air together.As a Nana, we have an important role in encouraging them socially and spiritually. Building trust is key.

  • Brenda
    Posted at 19:03h, 12 November Reply

    I have 18 grandchildren and 3 on the way. It is the joy of my life. My favorite time of the week is Wednesday mornings. Each Wednesday at 9 am the grandchildren come to my home (the ones that aren’t in school) and we do grammy day. We do crafts and fun activities. Some days are more organized than others. We eat lunch and clean up. Mom’s come back around 12 noon. This gives them 3 hours for doctor appointments or shopping or for other meetings that they can schedule around this time.

    During summer the whole gang comes and we have a blast. A crazy blast. The cousins love each other and look forward to grammy days.

  • Dave
    Posted at 12:47h, 15 November Reply

    My wife and I enjoy the times we spend with our 14 grandchildren. We babysit for our three married sons and our one married daughter. They feel secure knowing we are looking after their children so can have an evening out together with their spouse.

    I enjoy taking each of our grandchildren out for a walk – one a week. We go to a favorite park by a river and do our favorite things that they all enjoy – throwing stones into the river from a viewing platform, then dropping leaves down into the river a little further along, from a bridge. We pretend the leaves are floating down like birds, then sailing away like little boats.

    Then we go for ice-cream or a snack. The grandchildren look forward to “THEIR TURN” for a walk with Grandpa – and I enjoy the times just as much!

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