Long-distance grandsons: The 2018 highlight reel of our times together

Long-distance grandsons: The 2018 highlight reel of our times together

When grandparents and grandchildren live miles apart—815 miles it is for Brayden, Camden, Declan, and myself—every moment shared is one to be treasured.

Here, the highlight reel of our times together in 2018, including more from the birthday visit to the North Pole with the Colorado clan:

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Firsts: Declan and snow... snow... snow!

Firsts: Declan and snow... snow... snow!

Megan made the trek from the desert to Colorado last month, to meet newborn nephew Benjamin. Brayden and Camden stayed home with Dad so they wouldn’t miss school, but as Declan is obligated only to two mornings a week at preschool, he had the privilege of joining Mommy for the visit.

The first morning of their stay at my house, Declan woke me early, bounding into my bedroom exclaiming, “Gramma! It’s SNOWing!”

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Flashback Friday: Bacon, eggs, and Bubby

Flashback Friday: Bacon, eggs, and Bubby

Dear readers: This flashback feature originally appeared on Grandma's Briefs September 6, 2011—back when Brayden was called Bubby, Camden was but a babe, and Declan wouldn’t arrive for three more years. Thank you for reading my rerun.

When I visited Bubby and Camden last month, one of the things Bubby wanted us to do together was make cookies. Because it was so darn hot in the desert—even in the house—I convinced Bubby that it would be so much more fun to make and eat...well...bacon and eggs!

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Gramma goes tubing

Gramma goes tubing

Despite having been born in Minnesota and living in the Land of 10,000 Lakes the first decade of my life, I'm not big on water sports. To any degree. I still don't know how to swim... even after having swim lessons as a child and again at 40 years old.

I'm not deathly afraid of water, but I certainly don't seek out splishy-splashy fun in water over my head. Not even water up to my chest, to be honest.

So it should come as no surprise that I've never whiled away hours in an inner tube on a lake. Nor have I engaged in tubing…

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Grandma challenge: How full can she fill forty-four hours?

Grandma challenge: How full can she fill forty-four hours?

My desert-dwelling grandsons and their parents visited my house last week—for forty-four hours. The family had taken a road trip to Vail for a wedding, and Jim and I were fortunate they fit in a stop at our place on their way back home.

I was thrilled to host them and was determined to squish as much into the visit as possible, unsure of when I'd see Brayden, Camden, and Declan (as well as Megan and Preston, too) again.

As all three boys have birthdays in June…

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Throwback Thursday: Sponge bombs for summer fun

Throwback Thursday: Sponge bombs for summer fun

This #TBT feature originally published on Grandma's Briefs April 14, 2015—when Brayden was two months away from 7 and Camden soon to turn 4. Thank you for reading my rerun!

Super simple, sloppy, summer fun!

WHAT YOU NEED

  • Basic rectangular household sponges in various colors (two per sponge bomb)

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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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Believin' in joy! Plus GRAND Social No. 301 link party for grandparents

Believin' in joy! Plus GRAND Social No. 301 link party for grandparents

Believin' in joy!

Everyone on Facebook gets their fill of viral videos, no doubt. Some of the videos spread far and wide are funny, some sad, some distressing, some thought-provoking. My favorite ones are those intended to do nothing more than spread joy.

This—which many of you may have already seen—is of the joyful sort... and worth watching again and again. A shot of sheer joy to start the week:

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Throwback Thursday: 4 spring walks to take with grandkids

Throwback Thursday: 4 spring walks to take with grandkids

This #TBT piece by Lisa Carpenter originally published April 21, 2015 on Grandma's Briefs.

Put on your walking shoes and head out with the grandkiddos. Here, four ideas for savoring spring while out and about.

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Word of the Day: Jubilation

Word of the Day: Jubilation

Today's word is... JUBILATION!

Definition of jubilation (per Merriam-Webster):

1an act of rejoicing the state of being jubilant 

2an expression of great joy

Jubilation on display:

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Four fun, free apps for transforming seasonal snapshots

Four fun, free apps for transforming seasonal snapshots

The merry and bright holiday music makers are right: It is indeed the most wonderful time of the year.

It's also, for many grandmothers and others, the time of year we take more photos than ever of friends and family who are near and dear and gathered together for holiday happenings. Hundreds and hundreds of photos in the case of some snap-happy family photographers. (Or so I hear. Ahem.)

What to do with all those festive faces and places often kept captive in computers and cameras of smart and sundry sorts once the holidays have come and gone? Here are four of my favorite free apps for transforming at least a few of the seasonal snapshots into delightful — or daffy, depending — remembrances to enjoy year 'round.

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