Grandparents survival guide

There are many Blogs on the web about Parenting. But few Blog about ’US’ the grandparents, and how to survive a whole afternoon with our grandchildren.

1st – keep in shape, exercise every day, every week and the week after. Because when your grandchild arrives, you’ll want to be able to run as fast as he/she can. Climb a tree to fetch the kite, and rescue him/her when they can’t get down from one of those new climbing nets at the park.

2nd – Grandparents are allowed to give in, sometimes, because we are grandparents, remember? AND we usually give in when we have no strength left to say no. We typically say, “Only this time, but don’t tell Mommy or Dad, it’s our secret. Uh-oh! Wrong, children are honest by nature, and the first thing they’re going to do is tell their parents. “Grandpa/ma let me do this!”


3rd -There are distinct kinds of parents,

  1. the ones that want their children to obey to all rules, NO FUN.
  2. the ones that don’t want their kids to get dirty, NO FUN.
  3. the ones that don’t mind in what shape their kids come home, just as long as they’ve had a good time with their grandparents. SUPER.

The third is my case, thank goodness. I have warned my grandchild’s parents that if they want me to babysit, that child is going to play in the mud, he/she might scratch his knee while playing, and we’ll go for walks in the woods no matter what kind of critters we may encounter.

4th – Beware of toy stores. I walked into a toy store looking for an educational game for my grandchild age 2 ½ and came out with this.  It’s sitting in my living room. See the tunnel? Well then, guess what?


I had to crawl through the tunnel to make him happy and got stuck; well let’s be honest, I wanted to go through the tunnel. The good thing is that I called out for help and two tiny hands reached out to help me. Has your heart melted yet? Mine did. Toddler’s don’t realize that we are much older and not as agile as they are. They probably think we are Houdini.

Then I could smell something and asked my grandchild, did you dirty your diaper? “No,” Kevin answered. So, I invented a story. (by the way, this summer we’re potty training)

Kevin, if we don’t change your diaper mama dragon will smell it. Kevin’s eyes peered into mine in amazement. I put my finger to my lips and said “Shhhhh. Hurry, let’s change your diaper before mamma dragon finds us. Pee-yew stinky poop.” Giggle-giggle.

Kevin wasn’t scared at all but and went along with the charade. Now and then he does the same, “Shhhh, the dragon.” He whispers as he tiptoes around the house looking for the dragon.

Grandparents are kids at heart, and we have the excuse to act like kids because we must entertain our grandchildren. Right? I love this part.

Toddler’s see us as superheroes and friends. The human figure that is patient and spoils them. When Mom and Dad come home from work and have had a long day, I can understand that they don’t have much patience left for their toddlers. The kids want attention, they’ve been in PreK all day, playing, pushing and shoving, learning how to survive with other toddlers. When they don’t get the attention they thrive for, they act up, throw things on the floor, etc. It’s normal. When ignored, they cry out “I want grandma/pa.”

There you go. In my case, my grandchild lives downstairs, and I can sometimes hear him cry. Shortly after, someone knocks at the door. Who could it be?

I open the door, and that smile melts my heart once again. It doesn’t matter if I’m busy cooking a meal or ironing. I let Kevin in and play. Now, dinner still has to be prepared before grandpa comes back from work, so, I have Kevin help me. I pull up a chair near the counter and give him a potato with cloves and have him create a face. On other occasions, I give him dough or whatever I am preparing at the time and keep him busy. Pots and pans have come in handy, add a handful of clothespins and listen to the music.

In any case, when he visits which is almost every day, it gives me an excuse to stop whatever I’m doing and relax, more or less. Let’s say; I set aside daily chores to cherish these precious moments with my grandchild that is so eager to play and learn something with his grandparent.

The joy of being grandparents.

Leave a comment if you have time. What do you do to keep your grandchild busy and happy?

Do you have aches and pains the day after? Is it because you also climbed a tree?

Share your stories with me. I would love to hear from you.

Take care.

Note this site is under construction, I’m working on it. I’m a grandparent, mom (yes, my young adults still need me) and I have a full-time job and also babysit and write books for kids. Phew!

My picture book ‘Jurassic Rat‘ is coming in spring 2019 (Clear Fork Publishing)

Author: eleanorannpeterson

As a child, I spent my summer holidays by the swamp catching tadpoles and other creepy critters or running after wild animals. I wanted to become a veterinarian when I grew up. But destiny turned my life around - I moved to Italy, where I obtained my BS in Environmental Sciences and Territorial Management. When not working in our family-run business, I write, read, play with clay, doodle, and go on scavenger hunts in the woods, followed by my six cats.

2 thoughts

    1. Hi C.C. Claudio, I wish I had my grandchild’s energy. Here in Italy we have had an average of 37°C and 85% humidity. I’m practically melting away. But fortunately it doesn’t seem to affect the little guy. Thanks for leaving a comment.

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