Grilled Grandma: Jeanne

How many children do you have? I have one, and my husband has 5 from his previous marriage.

How many grandchildren? 12

What are their ages? 25, 22, 17, 12, 8, 6, 4, 4, 3, 2, 2 and 1

Any great grandchildren? 2

What do your grandchildren call you? Grandma Jeanne (to distinguish me from their many other grandmas.)

How often do you get to see your grandchildren? The older ones, rarely. They’re off about their lives. The little ones I see at least once a month.

What is the best thing about being a grandma? How long do you have to listen? This grandma gig is the bees knees, as we oldsters like to say.

What is the most challenging part of being a grandma? Keeping my opinion to myself when decisions are made that don’t feel like the best thing for one of the kids. (And, by the way, I stink at it.)

Describe a recent time that one (or more) of your grandchildren made you laugh out loud.
  I’d made plans to take Phinn, age 3, and his little sister, Harper, who’ll be 2 in September, to the Children’s Museum. The day before I was supposed to pick them up, Mom called to say, “Good news! Harper is potty-trained!” Which, of course, translates: “For the next few days/weeks, Harper will be peeing through panties instead of into a diaper.” We hadn’t been at the museum 5 minutes before she turned the kiddy slide into a water hazard.

What is your favorite thing to do with grandchildren who visit your house? It changes, depending on their ages. Right now, I have a set of Wizard of Oz Pez dispensers and I enlist as many g-kids as I can to do a Pez puppet show of the Wizard of Oz. I think they may be too young to really get it, though, because as soon as the candy is gone, they wander away and I’m left clutching a handful of Pez dispensers and singing in my Munchkin voice.

What is your favorite thing to do when visiting grandchildren at their house? Teaching them bad habits to torment their mothers is always fun.

How do you maintain the bond between yourself and your grandchildren between visits?
You’re kidding, right?

What do you most want to pass along to your grandchildren? Happy memories.

What is one word you hope your grandkids think of when they think of you?
Actually, “Grandma!” is probably the best thing I’ve ever been called.

Jeanne's blog, The Raisin Chronicles, is a must-see for anyone in need of a few chuckles ... maybe even a guffaw or two.