Special guest blog from Denise Long, owner of www.Grandmothering.info and author of upcoming book The New Grandmothering.
Denise aims to help others (like herself) who need the support, advice and inspiration to keep going after retiring, when you thought your life as a parent was all over. She started her “Grandmothering!” website as a place to share articles that are chock-full of ideas and tutorials to help grandparents and parents of school-age children.
We are looking forward to sharing a series of articles from Denise on elder living in the coming months. Stay tuned!
Help with Surviving a Visit from Grandkids
Grandchildren are among the great joys life provides. When you get to spend time with yours, you don’t want to waste it staring at the television. You want to be active and engaging so your grandkids are happy and comfortable opening up to you.
Of course, you also want to stay safe. Fractures caused by falls are the most common serious injury in seniors. A nasty fall can have a huge negative impact on your independence and overall quality of life. If you want to stay safe and have fun, try out some of these cool activities your grandchildren will love.
Get Cookin’ In The Kitchen
Remember when your family taught you to cook? There were no teaspoons or tablespoons. Everything was “a pinch of” this or “a bit of” that. Those kinds of recipes have to be passed down orally. If you have the opportunity to spend time with your grandchildren, it’s the perfect occasion to pass yours down!
Of course, not everybody has a specific family recipe. However, that shouldn’t discourage you from spending time in the kitchen with your grandchildren. Teaching them to cook instills a healthy skill that can serve them well the rest of their lives. If you’re stuck for ideas on what to make, check out these kid-friendly recipes that are sure to be a hit.
Break Out the Family Photo Albums
There’s nothing children love more than a good story, and they say a picture is worth a thousand words. The stories you can tell them using your family photo albums teaches your grandchildren about their heritage and genealogy. Plus, they will love seeing all of the old outfits, cars and buildings the photos contain -- and you’ll love telling them all about them!
If finding all your photo albums sounds more like a hassle than an enjoyable afternoon, you don’t have to miss out on teaching your grandkids about the family’s history. There are a plethora of genealogy websites you can use to trace back your heritage and learn about where you come from. It’s an exciting experience that helps you grow closer as a family.
Stay Safe While They Play
Kids need exercise. It helps them grow and develop and prevents health problems including childhood obesity. While it may not be possible for you to play a pickup game of soccer with your grandchildren, you can still encourage them to be active. A backyard swing set provides hours of safe and enjoyable fun that your grandkids will love. They can wear themselves out while you supervise, and everybody stays safe!
Perform a Science Experiment
You want your grandchildren to be curious about the world around them. They want to do cool things that don’t remind them of school. You can meet in the middle with fun and creative science experiments that are so cool, they won’t even suspect they are learning.
Try the Elephant’s Toothpaste experiment. All you need is a few common objects you can find in the bathroom and kitchen: dry active yeast, hydrogen peroxide, dish soap and food coloring. What happens is a foamy, twirly and fun chemical reaction your grandchildren will love. To make sure they are learning, ask them questions about what they think is going to happen before you start and how they think the experiment worked once it’s over. Pro tip: Put down some towels to make clean up a breeze.
Spending time with your grandchildren is one of the best things in life. To make the most of it, have a few fun activities on hand you can do together safely. From passing down a family recipe to exploring the limits of science, you’ll be making memories they will cherish forever.