Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Long Distance Grandparenting

I'm sure the fact 'grandparenting is grand' has been well documented by any and all who are grandparents but gosh do we ever get tired of saying it? No. The answer is no we never get tired of talking about how great it is to be a grandparent.

I'm one of the lucky grandparents who get to live close to my grandloves. I'm not sure I could stand it if I didn't see these precious faces at least once a week or so.




What about those grandparents who do live far away from their grandkiddos? Thanks to technology, they are able to stay in touch easily and even though it's not the same as living in the same town it is much better than it used to be. Our family keeps up with my favorite nephew and his sweet family this way but now that his oldest has started kindergarten, I started thinking of ways to 'sort of' be a little involved in their lives from 5 hours away.

Here's what I came up with:
  • Send cards via snail mail. Who doesn't like getting a sweet little card in the mail? 
  • Send little surprises by snail mail. 
  • If you video chat with your grands, try something other than simply talking. Find out what their favorite book is and read it to them or send them a new book in the mail and read it with them or sing some of their favorite songs while video chatting. 
  • Consider setting up a travel account to be able to be with them for their milestone events. Not everyone is blessed with unlimited funds but a little planning goes a long way. 
  • Make a digital scrapbook of you (and your spouse) from childhood to becoming a grandparent. This is a great way for the parents to read your story to the kids and it will probably spark wonderful conversations about what their parents' childhood was like. Make one of the grandkids, too for yourself. I do this regularly for my older relatives and they LOVE it!
  • Make videos of your town, even include your friends and send it to the kiddos. Include special attractions or just a sample of a regular day or just playing with your pet. 
  • Send them baked goods in the mail. I feel most of my childhood would not have been nearly so fantastic without my grandmother's baked goods. You could even video yourself making the goodies and include it in the package or send it to the parents with instructions to not open it until the package arrives. 
  • Send a card with $$ to be spent at their favorite ice cream shop or wherever they enjoy getting a treat. 
  • Plant a tree in your yard and take pictures of it as it grows 'with the child' and have the child stand by it for pictures everytime he/she/they visit. 
  • If you can't be there for a special event--recital, performance, game, etc... have flowers, a basket of goodies or whatever delivered to them the day of or even directly to the event venue.
  • Start a game by taking turns sending a picture of something in your house or a room (and theirs) for you to guess what it is. You could also take turns sending pictures of your favorite book/treasure/whatever. You could make a collage or scrapbook of their favorite things and they could do the same with your photos. 
  • Make a family history scrapbook for them. My girls LOVE theirs.
  • Share family stories. My girls love hearing family stories over and over again even though they're adults with kids of their own. Even if you've told the story before, tell it. I thought I'd told a few that I hadn't and the girls loved getting a new story but they also never mind hearing the repeated ones. 
  • Keep up with the latest kid trends. You can read, volunteer at a local school, get in a mom group on FB--I've found the ones here welcome grandmothers. :)
That's all I've got for now but I would LOVE to hear your thoughts! Research actually shows the benefits of being involved in the lives of our grandchildren reach further than within our families. Children with grandparents who are actively involved have a great compassion for aging, they seem to be happier and live longer. The sharing of new ideas and life wisdom benefits both generations. Children have shown fewer social and emotional problems and less trouble with peers when they have close relationships with their grandparents. Grandparents can benefit from increased brain and physical activity. Staying close with your grandkiddos benefits everyone. 

Of course, all I think about is the benefit of loving these little sweethearts! 






Read more:




Please visit CoasterDoodles! 

Y'all can find us on Facebook and 
Instagram (@coasterdoodlessc) and
Pinterest

Use THIS LINK or the code: EMPTYNEST 
for 15% off your purchase!



28 comments:

  1. First of all, your grandkids are just so adorable and you are blessed to be so close. Though mine is far away, our video chats are starting to get a little better. He sticks around a little longer and we have some fun, I sing to him from time to time. We haven't tried reading yet. I don't think he'd sit still long enough yet, but it will come in time. I'm so thankful for the technology we have.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you and I do know I'm blessed to have them close. So many families live far apart these days. Technology does make it all a little better. Marcy is just now starting to sit for reading so that will definitely come soon. Roland still thinks books are for eating. LOL I just love seeing all the pictures you post of that little cutie.

      Delete
    2. I also meant to say that video chats are perfect for avoiding the initial shyness when you do see him. He knows just who you are and that means the world.

      Delete
  2. I've got to save these ideas. Great strategy for those who don't live close to their grandkids. Nothing sweeter than grandkid faces, especially smiling ones. :-) Thanks for this list, Pam. I'm going to copy and save it as a Word doc and print it out!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad you liked the list! I kept thinking about what I'd do if they lived far away and figured these would be good. After I stopped crying, of course. LOL

      Delete
  3. I'm sure those benefits are real. Honestly, I'll say that I can reach of point of too much watching/babysitting/taxi-trips.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I haven't reached that point, yet. So far, my girls are pretty good about being aware of not taking advantage. :)

      Delete
  4. I like your list. One additional thing on mine is to pray regularly for my grandchild and his parents. I have been the recipeint of a grandmother's (and mother's) prayers all my life and it has meant so much. I'm thankful for technology that allows me to see my grandson in action : ) They'll be at the lake for a few days next week as they're going to a wedding one state over. Can't wait!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My grandmother prayed for me all the time but I guess I have that one on a different list from staying connected via long distance. I sure do miss her prayers. Once we become the elders of the family, who's left to pray for us? LOL So glad they're coming to visit! I know you'll have a blast!

      Delete
    2. I still have my mom and I can feel anxious about that sometimes. I know I can count on her prayers. As you say we are the ones who need to keep that chain going strong.

      Delete
  5. Your two little loves are SO precious! You (and they) are very blessed to have you near.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I see my grandsons daily and my granddaughters only once a week which I think is the reason I feel closer to the boys but at least my grandbabies are not hours away that would be hard

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That really would be hard. I hope I never have to find out.

      Delete
  7. Those are great ideas. No one seems to understand how important it is to me to live close to our grandson. Mark wants to move out of state and I understand his reasons but I will not be a far away grandparent. I told him he can go but I'm staying. I want to be part of his life, I want him to know me!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't blame you one bit. I would say and do the very same thing.

      Delete
  8. Until recently, all of my Grandloves have lived in the same small town with Husby and me. Now three of them have moved five hours away. I need all the help I can get! Thank you so much for these suggestions. I'll put them to good use!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh goodness. I know you're missing them terribly. I'm so glad you found these ideas helpful. Please let me know how they work out. I'll be thinking of you.

      Delete
  9. I love your ideas for long distance grandparenting. I am one of those, and am always looking for creative ways to stay in touch and keep the connection alive. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad you like them! Please let me know how they work out. It seems so many of us live apart these days.

      Delete
  10. My little guy is around 40 minutes away from me but in another state. I used to send him cards with $1 in it for every holiday because he was one, and now that he's 2, I'm supposed to send him $2 for every holiday. Grandma over here has been slacking, and I need to get back on my game. I'm fortunate enough to have him close by, but my son and daughter-in-law are off when I'm at work and working when I'm home. Sometimes it's really hard to see him. I was supposed to babysit him today, but my daughter in law stayed home. Bummer. By the way, you left your jacket over at the #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty. LOL.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have one who lives about 20 minutes away and one who lives an hour away and both sets of parents are so good at making sure they have Amma (that's 2 year old for, Grandma...LOL) time with me. It's great to have them close even if we don't see them daily, isn't it? For me, just knowing I can get in the car and see them in a short period of time is so comforting. Thank you for coming over and leaving a comment! I'm going run back over and grab my jacket. LOL

      Delete
  11. Thank goodness for FaceTime. Keeps me up front and as close as I can get. Love all your ideas. Found you on Blogging Grandmothers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. YES! It makes a huge difference! Thanks for coming by, reading, and commenting!

      Delete
  12. Love your list! We are long distance grandparents of 13 perfectly adorable grandbabies scattered across 3 states! I am saving that list for ideas to stay connected with them. Glad you joined us for the #BloggingGrandmothersLinkParty

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Wow, 13!!! That is wonderful! I hope the list works for you and those sweet loves. Thank you for coming over, reading and commenting. :)

      Delete
  13. Thanks for posting this list. I am a new grandmom whose grandbaby is 10 hours by car. I have seen long distance grandparenting at it's best. We were 20 hours from my parents. You are so right about sending special things in the mail. I loved your idea about baked goods. That's something my kids didn't get but sounds like something they would have loved!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your kind words! I hope you enjoy trying some of these out. I know I would have loved some of them if I had lived far from my grandparents.

      Delete

Thank you so much for taking the time to comment! It makes me feel connected to everyone even though we may live far apart! Have a wonderful day!

 
Design by Imagination Designs
Illustration by MerryLittleDoodle
Background by CinnamonDove