Grandparents are a link to the family’s past, enhancing children’s sense of belonging and their place in tradition and the community. Your children’s relationship with their grandparents is important to both generations; a study published in “Marriage and Family Review” supports the concept that parents essentially determine the nature of the grandparent-grandchild relationship. As parents, you provide a good example of intergenerational relations when you organize something special for Grandparent’s Day.
Grandparents love photos of their kids and grandchildren. Think of where grandma and grandpa spend a lot of time and present each of them with a photo that matches the decor or atmosphere of that place. You and your children can select a number of family photos and glue them onto a hard back in an attractive collage arrangement and then frame it. Or perhaps your children can make unique fridge magnets with their photos on them.
Have a picnic in honor of the grandparents. At this celebration, they are the guests of honor, so they do not have to participate in any preparation. If the children make a dish or bake a cake, the grandparents will be even more excited about the event. Before the meal, conduct a small ceremony in honor of the grandparents. The kids can read poems they wrote or sing a song dedicated to their grandparents. You can express your appreciation for special qualities that the grandparents contribute to the family. This is the time to avoid references to conflictual issues and to emphasize the grandparents' positive attributes.
You may already be helping your kids and parents keep in touch by phone or Skype. To make Grandparent’s Day special, make a short video that the grandparents can watch over and over again. This is easy to do with a smart phone or digital camera. Prepare a script with your children; they can read a story, recite a poem, play a musical instrument or do a dance – all in honor of their grandparents.
Each year, honor one of the grandparents in a way that is meaningful to him or her. For example, perhaps mother’s mom likes movies; the whole family can go to a movie followed by a meal or snack. Father’s mother may prefer having the day to herself with her grandchildren. You might all go to a ball game the year you honor father’s father because that is his favorite activity. Perhaps mother’s father would like to visit an art gallery.
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