It's that day of the week again! The grandkids are coming to stay. You've been out shopping especially for their favourite food. You've made sure to kiddie-proof your home. You've spoken to their parents about how they're doing. All that's left now is to spend some quality time with them!
By this stage of our lives, we've exhausted most of our bucket list. We might have a wealth of experience and wisdom to fall back on, but we've also seen it all before. And when it comes time for fun activities, we're running out of ideas. After all, we may not be decrepit just yet, but we're no spring chickens anymore. The problem is that these young guns just had endless energy! Their activity knows no bounds, and we struggle to keep up sometimes. We don't want to bore them to tears, though. The time we spend with family is more precious to us now than perhaps it ever has been. So we want to make every second count. Just how do we go about doing that? Here are some fantastic ideas I've picked up along the way that doesn't involve exerting too much energy.
Okay, so we're not going to be running around aimlessly anytime soon, but surely we can handle a little bit of physical activity. When the sun comes out to play, I like to take advantage of it by heading into the garden. There are endless possibilities out there! Kids love being active, and they can't quite understand why grandma can't keep up with the pace. To save us all from red faces (in more ways than one), come up with a plan well in advance. You can be sure that the grandkids are going to want to play outside at some point. Having a shortlist of things you can do will help avoid any awkward explanations as to why you could do with putting your feet up for a while!
Believe it or not, my grandchildren have expressed interest in my gardening before. So, I made it my mission to get them involved in whatever way I could. I even gave them their own little patch to plant a sunflower. It warms my heart seeing them glaring in anticipation as it grows a little taller every time they come to see me. Another idea I had was to buy some youth baseball gloves and a ball online. I'm just about capable of playing catch, so that's become my fall back option when the weather permits
I've written at length about this before, but being confined to inside your home doesn't have to be the end of the world. Nor does it mean simply dumping your grandchildren in front of the television. At Grandma's Place, we like to think a little more creatively than that. One of my go-to activities on a rainy day is arts and crafts. There is always something new to create, and the kids love getting their hands dirty. They'll marvel with pride by the end of it, having created something of their own. I've still got some of their proudest creations pinned to my fridge from when they were younger.
Another foolproof idea is to dig out your old board games. In the modern world, you'd be surprised how few chances children get to play an old-fashioned board game. It's all digital now. The first time I brought down a battered old Monopoly box, they stared at me like I was crazy. However, we ended up having a lot of fun that day. They even look forward to unearthing some of my other relics! Remember what the original point of board games was - to bring families closer together. That's exactly what it achieves in grandma's house.
Now, my absolute favourite activity to get my grandchildren involved in is baking. I love all manners of cooking anyway, but it feels extra special with your little helpers. Obviously you need to employ a keen eye to watch over them and make sure they aren't in any danger. But children love to get involved in the kitchen; mixing, stirring, and decanting. I don't know if this is just because trying to please is in their nature, but I'm certainly grateful of the help! Maybe they just know that come the end of it, there'll be freshly baked secret recipe cookies waiting for them.
Most of all, just cherish the time you get to spend with your grandchildren. Especially if you don't get to see them as much as you'd like. Their presence in our lives really is a blessing.
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Life as a grandma.. it's no 'quiet, restful days in the rocking-chair'. It's filled with activity, excitement and lots of family fun. Please share it with me.