Introducing Grilled Grandma Kimberly

What is a Grilled Grandma? A Grilled Grandma is a grandma whom I've grilled with some grandma-related questions, and she's graciously responded with answers and photos. Here is Grilled Grandma Kimberly.

How many children do you have? I have three children Adam is 31 and married to Courtney and currently deployed to Afghanistan. Not quite two years later brought a set of twins. Tim is married to Gwen and Raechel is married to Michael.

How many grandchildren? What are their ages? Conner (7), Lilli (5), Elsie Gray (3), Benjamin (20 mos), Gideon (14 mos), Maren (2mos). In addition, I am very close to a niece who has four, Oliver (7), Annabelle (5), Emmeline (4) and Everett(3). We lost my sister, her mom and their Granny, just a few months back. She had been very ill for a long time, so I consider my count at 10.

What do your grandchildren call you? Gramerly (Grandma Kimberly), Grandma and Kymbi.

After the initial elation, what was your first concern upon hearing you would soon be a grandmother?
From the time I knew I would not be having anymore children, I looked forward to being a grandma. It was unusual circumstances. My son was at Basic Training when my first grandchild was born. I was a little unsure of how to be involved. It turned out my grandson contracted a rare bacterial infection that landed him in Intensive Care for 3 weeks. Scary incident, but great bonding for the families.

How often do you get to see your grandchildren? Thankfully, quite often. I have a Playdate once a week where they all come and play and play. In addition I'm close enough to go to games, plays and have them over frequently.

What is the best thing about being a grandma?
The best thing is all the times I can say "Yes," to whatever they want to do.

What is the most challenging part of being a grandma?
The most challenging part is that four different sets of adult parents have very different ideas about child rearing. Trying to avoid stepping on toes is challenging for me.

Describe a recent time that one (or more) of your grandchildren made you laugh out loud.
Laughing goes on all Playdate long, because if one isn't up to something another one surely will be.
I suppose it is one of those, "you needed to be there" moments. I have bunnies that play outside in an enclosed fence. Gideon, the 13 month old loves to be in the pen with bunnies. He walks round and round patting bunny boy bottoms and squealing and telling those bunnies some fascinating stuff. Cracks me up.

What is your favorite thing to do with grandchildren who visit your house?
Wow, that's hard to say, because I am ever searching for new and interesting things to do with them. I suppose showing them how to garden, where eggs come from, and how to care for Bluebirds, as we rebuild the population here in Indiana.

What is your favorite thing to do when visiting grandchildren at their house?
I don't visit them as often as they visit me. I like to let them lead and just follow and obey.

How do you maintain the bond between yourself and your grandchildren between visits? My between visits are short, but I might send them a card or an e-mail, or call to check up on a little sick one.

What do you most want to pass along to your grandchildren?
My faith, all there is to notice in the big, wide world, my love of a good book, good food and good times.

What is one word you hope your grandkids think of when they think of you?

What is one thing you wish you had learned earlier as a grandparent?
Trust isn't a given.

What one bit of advice would you give a new grandma? Be patient, and just love, love, love each moment you have.

Do you have a website or blog? What is it about? My website is Free Ranging Chickens and Grandchildren.Basically it is a picture journal of my life as a Christian, wife, Gramerly, teacher, Gardner and Chickie Girl farmer. I hope that some folks might see how easy it can be to do fun things with the wee folk in their lives.

This grilling will now be permanently placed in the Grilled Grandmas Hall of Fame—AKA the Grilled Grandma Archives—under Grilled Grandma: Kimberly.

Dear Readers: If you'd like to nominate a grandma for grilling—yourself or any other grandma—please e-mail me her first name and e-mail address and I'll take care of the rest. Thank you!