So much to say

So much to say

When I was growing up, my mom and I didn’t talk much. At least not about big things, important matters mothers and daughters should discuss. No talks about girl things, God things, goals, dreams, birds, bees, boys.

The reason our communication focused only on surface stuff is debatable. My introversion? Mom’s aversion to uncomfortable truths? Her (justified) preoccupation with raising seven kids mostly on her own?

Whatever the reason, I promised myself…

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Hosting wee holiday guests? 7 safety steps for grandparents

Hosting wee holiday guests? 7 safety steps for grandparents

Family gatherings at Grandma’s house are the stuff seasonal songs are made of. Grandparents delight in hosting extended family for festive events, no doubt. But for grandmothers and others who typically see far less toddler traffic the rest of the year, the increase in visitors can be a bit unsettling… and potentially unsafe.

If you’re one of the fortunate ones hosting a houseful of young’uns for festive fun, consider making the following alterations while putting out seasonal decorations to ensure holiday gatherings at Grandma’s are as merry and bright—and safe—as can be.

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Encourage compassion! Plus, GRAND Social No. 308 link party for grandparents

Encourage compassion! Plus, GRAND Social No. 308 link party for grandparents

Encourage compassion!

The egregious lack of compassion on the parts of many—and on so many levels—in our society anymore has become an overriding dark cloud of concern to me. Maybe for you, too. It's so darn heartbreaking and mind boggling for those of us who know we, collectively, are better than the recent devastating actions and events that, fairly or not, have come to define us as a nation.

I want better for my grandchildren, for all grandchildren. You probably do, too. Yet it's hard to know…

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Throwback Thursday: Entertaining grandkids... 3 sure things

Throwback Thursday: Entertaining grandkids... 3 sure things

This #TBT piece originally published May 18, 2016 on Grandma's Briefs. Thank you for reading!

As a long-distance grandma with visits being few and far between, I feel obligated to provide memorable merriment for my three grandsons each time I see them. I put careful consideration into packing my grandma bag with goodies and games and crafty ideas galore.

Sometimes the magical makings I lug 800 miles to my grandsons' door elicit exactly the enjoyment I'd hoped. Sometimes they fail. Especially if picking a Pinterest activity to try together without trying it first myself.

When I visited Bubby, Mac, and Jak last month, I failed at more than a few things. On the other hand, there were…

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Throwback Thursday: Kids and games—18 fun ways to choose who goes first

Throwback Thursday: Kids and games—18 fun ways to choose who goes first

This #TBT piece originally published May 13, 2014 on Grandma's Briefs and seemed fitting for replay in anticipation of the summer fun to come. Thank you for reading!

When playing games with kids — or directing getting the ball rolling — choosing who gets to go first can sometimes take longer than the actual gameplay.

That no longer need be the case thanks to the following fun methods I've gathered for grandmothers and others.

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National Bullying Prevention Month: Resources for grandparents

National Bullying Prevention Month: Resources for grandparents

In recognition of October being National Bullying Prevention Month, my fellow GRANDparent Network members Leslie and Kay at Grandparents Link interviewed a couple kids on bullying. 

Take a look at their exclusive Frankly Kids: Bullying video (which they gave me permission to share):

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31 back-to-school jokes for kids

As kids of all ages hit the books once again, here are some giggles to counteract any groans from your grands during back-to-school season.

school jokes for kids

What school does the ice cream man attend?
Sundae school.

What do elves learn...

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BTS tradition: 10 ways to support school-bound grandchildren (plus a few extra)

Ah, back-to-school time. The past few years at this time, I've shared the following post from my archives. It's always gotten a great response — because grandparents are awesome and want to be involved in the education of their grandkiddos — so I hereby pronounce this post an annual BTS tradition.

This time around I've updated it in a few ways, including adding suggestions from other grandmas who shared tips in comments on the post in the past. (Thank you, ladies!)

10 WAYS TO SUPPORT SCHOOL-BOUND GRANDCHILDREN
Originally published August 6, 2013

My daughter Megan is not only the mother of my awesome grandsons, she was also an elementary school teacher for several years before MOM became her full-time job. Here are a few suggestions she and I came up with for supporting school-bound grandchildren in ways that will garner an A+ not only from the kids, but from their parents and teachers, too.

back to school ideas for grandparents

1. Send a care package to be opened the night before school starts. Consider adding new cozy jammies to help ease...

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Summer's simple pleasures: When did you last...

summer simple pleasures

Summer is the season of simple pleasures. A time for sweet, spontaneous — often spectacularly serendipitous — silliness such as those moments we remember from childhood. Our own childhood, possibly the childhoods of our children.

Simple pleasures we've set aside — perhaps even forgotten — in our ongoing pursuit of grand adventures, grand outings, grand activities to share with our grand kids. Simple stuff we've likely not done in far too long.

When did you last...

• jump rope?

• skip down the sidewalk?

• play freeze tag?

• sip root beer floats from a frosty mug?

• run through the sprinkler?

• have a water fight — with the garden hose, buckets...

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10 free or super inexpensive summer outings with grandkids (Friday flashback feature)

Many of us have heard Gretchen Rubin's quote, "The days are long, but the years are short" in reference to parenting. I say the same applies to summer time spent with grandkids. The days seem long yet the summer is relatively short, especially when attempting to pack in meaningful and, more importantly, fun activities.

Always here to help, today I re-run my previous post on ways grandparents can fill such days in inexpensive ways. (The original post featured 11 ways; this one just 10, as one is no longer available.)

10 IDEAS FOR FREE (OR SUPER INEXPENSIVE) SUMMER OUTINGS WITH GRANDKIDS
Originally published June 15, 2016 (outdated info has been removed)

free summer activities 

FREE FISHING
This one tops the list because fishing is fun. Mostly, though, it's because June — the current month! — is...

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From the archives: Four for Valentine's Day

The annual day o' love lurks right around the corner and Cupid will soon be sprinkling hearts and flowery fun far and wide.

Following are four of my previously published posts to peruse, a collection of sweet and silly sorts of stuff focused on ensuring grandkids feel the love — and laughter — this Valentine's Day.

valentine's day activities

 

Click each graphic to see the full post featuring lovey-dovey ...

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