Why Children Need Grandparents

Grandparents are very important in children’s lives. Because people are living longer, more people have grandparents now, and studies are showing all the good that involved, caring, open-minded grandparents offer their children and grandchildren. Grandparents are good for grandkids if they understand their place and don’t try to replace the parents or spoil the kids in the wrong way. Grandparents Have Influence Most adult children who were lucky enough to have grandparents involved in their lives appreciate it, and are thankful they had that opportunity. They often quote the things their grandparents taught them and instilled in them. It’s not unusual hearing adults say that their most admired person in their life is a grandparent. The amazing thing is that without being pushy, grandparents are very much responsible for instilling values into their grandkids. This is true even when parents do things a little differently. Grandparents Reduce Parental Stress Grandparents...
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Ten Tips for New Grandparents

If you’ve got the news that you’re going to be a grandparent, these tips will help you stay a favorite for many years to come. 1. Show Your Excitement When your children give you the announcement that they’re expecting, no matter what else is going on, show your excitement. Don’t think about finances, their relationship, or anything else but the positive news that you’re going to be a grandparent. Your child is probably excited, nervous, and even scared to tell you, because it’s going to make it all very real for them once the word is out. They need you to be happy and positive about it. 2. Tell Positive Stories It can be tempting the moment you find out about your daughter or daughter-in-law’s pregnancy to start sharing stories of your own. If you do, try to tell only positive stories right now, unless they ask. You don’t want...
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Seven Reasons Grandparent Relationships Are Important

Grandparents are parents without the discipline. As a parent, you have no choice but to use every single moment as a teaching point and a lesson. Parents can’t let up the same as grandparents can, because they’re responsible for how their kids turn out. That’s why grandparents are not the same now that they’re grandparents instead of parents. Instead, they complement the parents. Here are seven reasons why grandparent relationships are so important. 1. They Teach Family History The best way to learn family history, including what your parents were like as children, is to talk to a grandparent. Grandparents are the savers of history and all the funny stories from “the olden days”. Nothing is quite like hearing about your mom’s first date from Grandma’s perspective. It humanizes parents and connects children with their heritage. 2. Grandparents Are Fun It’s been mentioned that parents must parent. Grandparents may sometimes...
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Is It OK to Indulge Your Grandchildren?

Everyone loves to say that the grandparents’ job is to spoil their grandchildren. But, what if you really are spoiling them in a way that will harm them, without meaning to? Stories have been coming out lately stressing that grandparents can be responsible for making their grandkids more susceptible to cancer because of junk food and “spoiling” them. But, there are ways to indulge your grandchildren in a healthy way that feels good and is not dangerous. Plan for Visits By their nature young children (and teenagers) can get bored easily. Boredom can feed into the spoiled child syndrome and cause meltdowns and lack of enthusiasm for visiting. Instead, make plans for the visit that they will look forward to, such as movie night, baking, hiking – whatever activities that will make the visit more fun for all of you. Turn Off Distractions When your grandkids are visiting, avoid the...
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Investments for Grandkids All Grandparents Can Love

One of the best ways to indulge your kids is to teach them the value of money. That can happen simply by helping them invest in their future through different investment opportunities. Ensure that you explain these things to your kids and your grandkids as they get older, so that they know how to grow and use their savings. 529 College Savings Plan Every state has 529 college savings plans, often referred to as a 529 plan. Basically, it’s a savings plan to cover college costs individual to each state. However, children are free to use the money in the account for any state, though it might not be enough to cover tuition depending on the school your grandchild wants to go to. The best thing to do is read all about 529 plans on this government website: https://www.sec.gov/reportspubs/investor-publications/investorpubsintro529htm.html Roth Individual Retirement Account (IRA) As soon as your grandchild has...
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How to Stay Close with Your Grandchildren

As a grandparent, one of your most important jobs is to ensure that you bond with and stay close to your grandchildren. Today, that’s possible even at a distance if you use technology to your advantage. These tips will help. * Listen More Talk Less – You know the saying, “God gave you two ears and one mouth for a reason.” This is very important when it comes to dealing with the younger generation. Due to the age gap, sometimes parents and grandparents seem very out of touch and even hypocritical and judgmental to younger people. If you want to ensure that you are thought of as open-minded and open-hearted, listen more and talk less – especially when it’s something that you’re not accustomed to. * Keep Most Secrets and Confidences – When your grandchild tells you anything, consider it confidential. Of course, if they tell you something that must...
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Grandparents Sharing History with Grandchildren

One of the best parts of being a grandparent is sharing family history and heritage with your grandkids. Grandkids like hearing stories about your life before they came along, especially if their parents are included. Here are some fun ways for grandparents to share history with grandchildren. Write a Book There are many stories you can share in a book. The best way not to get overwhelmed is to focus on sharing a specific story with the book. It might be a book about your life up until today, or it might be a book about the family tree. It’s up to you, and you don’t have to do just one. You could write separate books such as “The Day You Were Born”, “How Grandpa and I Got Married”, and more. Make a Video If you are more comfortable recording a video of the story, try that. You can usually...
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Five Ways to Make Your Visit Special

When you live a long distance from your grandkids, you probably don’t get to see them very often. Today, most grandparents still work, so they’re lucky to get to see the grandchildren during vacations and holidays. Having such a short time together can make it hard to know what to do to make each visit special. 1. Let Mom and Dad Lead the Way It doesn’t matter if you did it “that way” and all turned out fine. Your child has made a choice with their spouse to do things a certain way: their way, not yours. It’s not a critique of your parenting skills when children do things their own way. Try to remember what it was like when your parents or in-laws didn’t comply with your wishes with your kids, and don’t do the same thing. You don’t have control over this situation and no amount of fighting...
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Do’s and Don’ts for Grandparents

Being a new grandparent is a whole new world. Sometimes you can feel as if you have no control over the experience and in a lot of ways you don’t. Your children oversee their kids and you oversee yourself. That’s how it should be. Your job as a grandparent is to love deeply and not judge, while being a soft place for both your children and your grandchildren to fall if needed. * Don’t Talk Bad about the Parents – This can be hard if you dislike the in-law that your child chose as your grandchildren’s other parent. But, it is necessary that you keep your opinions, facial expressions, and thoughts to yourself. The only time you should interfere is if there is abuse going on, and that should be directly with the other adults, leaving the kids out of it. * Don’t Talk Bad about the Other Grandparents –...
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Bonding with Long-Distance Grandparents

Today with all the wonderful technology, there is no reason why long-distance grandparents need to be out of the loop. Children can bond with grandparents long distance if you make them part of your daily life using the technology available. Don’t think that Granny can’t learn new technology – dangle more time with grandkids in her way and she will learn. And, most grandparents today are actually pretty tech savvy. After all, the internet has now been here as we know it for more than 20 years. Here are some great bonding tips for keeping the relationship close in spite of the distance. * Read Stories – Send your kids an iPad, then use the technology such as Facetime, Skype, Facebook or Zoom.us to connect with sound and picture to your grandchild live at story time. Try to do it at least weekly. They can watch you read to them...
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