Grilled Grandma: Jeanie

How many children do you have? I have 3 children....a son and 2 daughters. They are all married, so now I have 6 children.

How many grandchildren? What are their ages? I have 7 grandchildren, Jared, 10, Hope, 8, Justin, 7, Wil, 5, Ellis(E.J.), 2, Anna, 2 and Beck, 2 months.
Any great grandchildren? No, none of those for a long while yet.

What do your grandchildren call you? Grandmom or Grandmommy

How often do you get to see your grandchildren? They all live a half hour or less away, so I get to see them often. I feel very lucky to get to go to their soccer, baseball and basketball games, school events, plays, birthday parties and all the activities that are part of their lives. They don't get excited to see me the way they do with the grandparents that visit from out of town, but I am very grateful to be able to be a small part of their everyday lives. All of that and the fact that I don't have to go stay with them for a week and they don't have to come stay with me for a week are good things.

What is the best thing about being a grandma? Not being the mom. Seriously, I am very grateful that my grandchildren all have very good parents, so I can just be the Grandmom.

What is the most challenging part of being a grandma? For me right now it is time and energy. I am still working almost full time so I don't always have the time or energy to do all the things I would like to do with my grandkids.

Describe a recent time that one (or more) of your grandchildren made you laugh out loud. Well, as we all know with kids there is always something funny being said or done.
I loved when one of my grandsons told me I must not be old because I knew how to buckle his carseat.
One of my 2-year-old granddaughters pulled off her sock and said "Look, I have wingernails on my woes" (fingernails on my toes).
I laughed when my 8-year-old granddaughter was impressed with the manual windows on a loaner car they had because you could roll the window up after the car was turned off.
It always makes me laugh that kids these days think that everything can be fixed with new batteries.

What is your favorite thing to do with grandchildren who visit your house?
I like having one of them at a time come to spend the night. I love the one-on-one time that lets me get to know them better. I don't do this as often as I would like, but hope to do it more when I quit working.

What is your favorite thing to do when visiting grandchildren at their house? I like that when I am at their house it can be just play time with them without feeling like there are other things I need to be doing.

How do you maintain the bond between yourself and your grandchildren between visits? Since they all live close I just try to see them as often as possible. With the older ones, it is harder as they have busier and busier lives of their own.

What do you most want to pass along to your grandchildren? Well, I'm sure they would all like some money to come their way some day, but apart from that, like most grandparents,  I hope they get a strong sense of family and an appreciation of the love and support they have from all the people that love them.

What is one word you hope your grandkids think of when they think of you? "Alive" is a good one for now.

What is one thing you wish you had learned earlier as a grandparent? That as fast as it seemed like my children grew up, my grandchildren seem to be growing up even faster.

What one bit of advice would you give a new grandma? Just be the grandmom or granny, or grandma or Nana that you are. Don't try to compete with other grandparents and especially don't try to compete with blogging grandmas. There is no way that I could ever keep up with all the craft creating,  granny camping, goody bag toting, cookie baking grandmas I read about on blogs. I admire them, I just can't keep up with them.

Don't let her fool you: Jeanie is one of those impressive blogging grandmas she speaks of. Be sure to visit her blog, Living Consciously.