Staying Connected To Your Grand Children Without A Computer or Smartphone
As Australians live longer and become increasingly mobile, long distances often seperate grandparents and grandchildren. Many grandparents are continuing to work into their 60's and only have time for semi-annual or annual visits.
If your technically minded, you can easily stay in touch through daily emails, web cams and digital photo's but it can be more dificult maintaining connnected relationships if you don't have a computer or smart phone. Maggie Dent, author and parenting specialist says there are ways to reach out and here are her suggestions for absent grandparents..
- Never stop trying to connect - keep sending those surprise cards and small gifts, especially home-made things. Never miss a birthday even if it's not acknowledged
- Create a photo wall with photo's of your grandchildren. It is so easy to capture images and send them these days, even by snail mail, so ask for them to be posted.
- Write some family stories from your own childhood in a special book or create a scrap book that captures old childhood memories. As we age we become fascinated with our family history and when your grandchildren come asking, maybe even after they've left home, be prepared to show them.
- Have your family tree done, both maternal and paternal with the grandchildren in them. This is a powerful moment when we realise that we have many ancestors
- Record either a video or audio of your life stories, especially moments of challenge, fun and adventure. Having these forms of history has been incredibly powerful for families because hearing a person's voice or seeing them speak is so much more engaging, touching and evocative than just the written word.
- The teenage years are often a challenge for families so always include in every card and message that you send your grandchildren "our door is always open for you". Many teens want to leave home prematurely and I have known many who have turned up at their grandparent's unexpectedly. They need somewhere safe to go.
- Leave a special loving messsage to your grandchildren to be read at your funeral - naming them and telling them how much you love them and wish them a happy life.
- Create a savings account and put whatever you can afford in it every month. It's not about the money it's about doing something for them over a long period of time. Tell them you want them to use it to travel to a dream holiday destination or fulfil some other dream.
We'd love you to share your tips ofhow to stay connected with your family....below