When everyone was younger, it was a bit easier to keep in touch. Now that grandparents are getting older as well as the kids, the times spent together are few and far between. Here are some suggestions for grandparenting long-distance style.
Don’t resign yourself to being out of your grandchildren’s lives because they don’t live close anymore. Travel and age may restrict you to once or twice a year, but the rest of the time doesn’t have to sit idle. Here are some suggestions for staying connected even when you are not there in person.
* Make a phone call – If it’s one thing that kids like it is to talk on the telephone. Invest in a family plan that allows you to call them often but for less money. When they are little, allow them to call you once a week. You may even take the initiative and give them a call. Ask about their day and what is going on in their lives. Don’t forget to make birthday and holiday calls.
* Use video calls – Skype is a popular way to make video calls free of charge. All you need is a webcam on your computer and speakers if you don’t have ones built in. You can call them just to see their faces. Over the course of a year, a lot can change. If they need help with something, video calls allow you to demonstrate instead of just telling them over the regular landline. The entire family can spend time together on a video call.
* Send snail mail – Everyone likes to get mail, especially when they are away from home. When grandkids go to college, use that time to send mail and bond anew with them. Send birthday cards, care packages, special treats and simply a line or two to your grandchildren to let them know you care. Everyone can work on their writing skills and letters are the way to do it.
* Use social networking – Set up a family Facebook page. Here you can post pictures to share and also drop a quick line about what is going on in your life. You can even learn how to instant message with your grandkids. This is a great way to let family know about important developments like a hospitalization or a new baby being born. It is fast, free and easy.
* Play games – This is another advantage of Facebook. Stay close by playing online games with your grandkids. Facebook offers dozens of games that you can play to share special moments.
Are you looking for a way to stay connected with your family, especially your grandchildren? Try using the suggestions above. Don’t shy away from technology. It will become your best friend.