Grilled Grandma: Anne

How many children do you have? 3

How many grandchildren? What are their ages? 4 – 17 and 15 in one family, 3 and 5 in the other

Any great grandchildren? No

What do your grandchildren call you? Nanna

Other than the initial elation, what was your first concern upon hearing you would be a grandmother? I fell in love at a level I didn’t know I was capable of so moving near the first one was critical.

How often do you get to see your grandchildren? Not nearly often as much.

What is the best thing about being a grandma? Get to hand them back – that’s true, but the sense of continuation is great too, so is having a different kind of time (more of it) to watch and enjoy their development.

What is the most challenging part of being a grandma? Spending enough time with them.

Describe a recent time that one (or more) of your grandchildren made you laugh out loud. Hmm, not laughter, but when my eldest grandkid showed me a coffee-table book with World Of Warcraft pix and described the peace community there I was not only impressed, but grateful for an insight into a world I’ll probably never understand.

What is your favorite thing to do with grandchildren who visit your house? The computer for the teenagers, the cat for the youngest girl, and her brother seems happy to hang out.

What is your favorite thing to do when visiting grandchildren at their house?
Oh see what they’re up to, their art, their books, their garden – what they are doing or interested in or want to talk about.

How do you maintain the bond between yourself and your grandchildren between visits?
Instant messaging with one, phone calls, and we just know we’re connected.

What do you most want to pass along to your grandchildren? Compassion and a love of life.

What is one word you hope your grandkids think of when they think of you?
One already calls me the “cool” grandma – that works.

What is one thing you wish you had learned earlier as a grandparent?
To be a bit more insistent about visits etc.

What one bit of advice would you give a new grandma?
Trust yourself.

Prolific Anne maintains two blog: WhenGrandmotherSpeaks – “not about grandparenting but about life” – and I urge you to visit both!