Whether you live around the corner or cross-country, you can strengthen your relationship with your grandchildren through creative activities. Here are 6 activities to be close when you and your grandchildren are far apart:
1. Web chat: In order to develop a closer relationship, download some sort of web chat software like Skype or FaceTime with your grandchildren. Nothing can beat face-to-face interactions.
2. Family journal: Start a family journal. You write some entries and then send it to your grandkids for them to write some entries. Include pictures or draw in it to make it visually appealing. It might be eye-opening to include stories about your childhood. Your grandkids will come to know you in a new way.
3. Texting: Reach out to teen and tweens by texting. These small communications are easy, daily ways to be a part of your grandchildren's lives. They will feel happy to know you thought of them.
4. Cards: Kids love to get mail with their names on the envelope. Send letters on special stationary or send the grandkids their own set of stationary to encourage ongoing exchange of letters.
5. Send an activity kit: Send a package including all the supplies for an at-home movie night. Watch the same movie. Then you can talk about it afterwards. If your granddaughter loves crafts, send all the parts to a project for her to enjoy.
6. Book Club: Choose a favorite book from your childhood and help them acquire it. One option is for you and your grandchild to each read the book separately and then discuss it together via web chat.
Alternately, you can read it to your grandchild over the phone. If you are fortunate enough to live near your grandchildren, you have a wider range of activities available to you. Here are just 6 activities to strengthen your bonds with your grandkids across town:
1. Grandparents Camp: Once or twice a year, host a special day camp for your grandkids. You can find a plethora of holiday or seasonal crafts online to do together to fit a variety of ages. You'll also enjoy playing Minute to Win It games together. Kids will enjoy competing with their grandparents in these games of skill, chance, and cooperation. Grandparent Camps will become fond lifelong memories.
2. Bike Hike: Find a nice trail or some quiet country roads where you and your grandkids can safely ride away from traffic. Pack a picnic so you can stop en route or when you reach a special destination to spend some time talking and laughing.
3. Geocaching: This is a real-world treasure hunt that is all around us. Go to the official website to find geocaches hidden near you. Then hike, bike, or drive to find them together!
4. Scavenger Hunt: Create a series of clues you can discover together. This might be a photo, sound, or video scavenger hunt.
5. Traditions: Invent small traditions to share. Take your grandchildren out to a restaurant of their choice every year for their birthdays. Once a month take them on a simple date of their choice--to get ice cream or play tennis.
6. Write notes: Leave occasional notes of love and encouragement on their pillow or tucked into their school bag. You can also make candy grams to sweeten the deal. Kids need as many people to love and support them as they can get! Grandparents have a special role to fill--that of friend, confidante, and cheerleader. For more ideas on how to cross the generation gap and improve your relationship with your grandchildren, check out the Amy Adele blog.