I was very lucky. My mums parents made very cool grandparents. I was only 7 when my Grandma died but my Grandad was in my life right up until Grace was 3 years old. He was someone we all respected and looked up to. And he was definitely very, very cool.
What made my Grandad great?
Aside from the fact that he was the hardest working, strongest person I know – he always had time for us. He used to make each one of us feel like we were special. Like we were the only grandchild. We used to play ‘shops’ in his greenhouse and he would open his tins of food upside down so that we could have them the right way up on our shelves!
I can recall a story being relayed to me that he was walking through town one day and someone with a survey approached him. He said to them ‘don’t you know who I am?’. As they stood there looking puzzled, he walked away! There are so many other stories about him which I have previously shared and I also wrote a poem about him which I read at his funeral. I still miss him immensely.
How to be cool grandparents
Shepherds Friendly have put together a fun and informative infographic in how to be cool grandparents!
Their tips include:
Be a rock-solid foundation of love
Make sure your grandchildren know that no matter what happens, they are always safe and loved at their grandparent’s house.
Generosity is key
Cool grandparents know that small, thoughtful gifts can brighten their grandchild’s day.
They remember what it was like parenting and they offer to hang out with their grandchildren so their children can recharge.
You don’t need to be a tech wizard to be a cool grandparent.
Simply, knowing how to text or use an iPad to keep connected will seem very cool to your grandchildren.
A good sense of humour
Share jokes and always be up for a good time.
Tell your grandchildren funny stories about your family’s past while you were all growing up.
Prepare for the future
Always be prepared for the unexpected e.g. tissues for a runny nose and plasters for a grazed knee. Consider giving your grandchilren a financial head-start by opening a savings plan to help them with university fees or buying their first homes in the future.
A Young Savers Plan
When I was a child, whenever I visited my maternal Grandad, he would always give us a brown envelope containing money – usually £5. To this day, I wish I had saved it rather than spent it on, well, insignificant things.
My mum does the same for Grace as her dad used for me. Of course, with inflation, the amount has increased but, thankfully, I have learned a lesson and Grace doesn’t feel like it is burning a hole in her pocket. Ross looks after her money and helps her to budget. We discuss any potential spends and help her see whether something is worth it.
One of the things that our children’s grandparents have started to look into is a savings account. One of the things that they could consider in order to save for the future of their grandchildren tax efficiently, is a Young Savers Plan from Shepherds Friendly.
This is a collaborative post.