There must be a million lessons I learn from being a grandma. Perhaps that’s just one of the many reasons I love spending time with my little ones.
Last Saturday I had the joy of spending the day with the two boys and mommy Kate while their dad and Pop Pop worked on a project. Here’s just some of what I learned:
- Crawlers are very fast – and they love cords and wires. Beware.
- Crawlers make games out of everything. We were at a church so crawling under the pews was great fun as was crawling through Mimi’s end table legs.
- Nine-month-olds are real “talkers” and love to imitate. So have fun. Be silly. Make faces, make noises, click your tongue and exaggerate everything. You may look absolutely ridiculous but to them you look like the best grandma in the world.
- Nine-monthers still like to cuddle, especially when sleepy. So don’t be in a hurry to put them down for a nap or to bed at night, even if they’re ready. Take a moment and enjoy the closeness. Smell their sweet fragrance, nuzzle their downy hair, snuggle their chubby little bodies. It’s not only good for them; it’s good for you, too. It’s peaceful and restful.
- Three-year-olds are very independent. Keep a small stool nearby. Our “big guy” knows where it’s kept and helps himself to it appropriately whenever it’s needed.
- Three-year-olds are also very helpful. I know it’s often easier and faster to “to it yourself” but I fell into that trap when my kids were young and am determined not to repeat that mistake. Konnor and I made gingerbread from a mix – just add an egg, water, and mix – yeah a lot of it got on the counter but who cares. Konnor got his stool (see no. 5 above), mixed with the wooden spoon, thoroughly enjoyed licking the goodness left on the spoon after mixing, and happily went on his way.
- Toddlers are very inventive and love to have fun; so keep some toys on hand. Garage sales are great plays to find wagons, used bikes, blocks or other toys. A wagon turned over becomes an ice cream truck, right side up you can put the front wheel of your bike and it’s a tow truck. Add a hose, some sudsy water, and a rag and a child has a “car wash” to enjoy.
- And don’t forget the parents. After all, they once were your little ones. Lavish your love and affection on them, too. No one ever gets too old for gooshy kisses and reminders of your love. Parents deal with lots of stress and need to know you see their efforts and value their parenting skills. Tell them once, tell them again, and then repeat. Often. Not only do you love them for who they are as individuals, but they made you grandparents so they’re actually extra special, aren’t they!
I’m sure there are lots more to add to the list so feel free to comment and add a few of your own. The idea is that as grandparents, we need each other. We learn from each other. And best of all, we get to share the joy of grandparenting with each other. Until next time…