Kaye Swain loves reading Bible books and Bible memory verses to the grandkids-Kaye Swain Roseville CA REALTORMajor changes have come for this Sandwich Generation grandmother. For the past umpteen years I’ve been an up-close grandma to half my grandkids and a long distance grandma to the other half. Now I’m long-distance to all and frequent flyer to many, not to mention plenty of drive time too.

My senior mom and I are back home in California, near another of our beloveds, and it is definitely a change and a challenge but fun nevertheless. I just returned from a delightful visit to one set of grandchildren where we spent a good portion of our time playing chess and checkers along with tons of hugs and cuddles!

And since all my grandkids are getting older, and have extremely busy schedules of their own, this is working out well. I do miss the daily interaction but, of course, I plan to stay close to them all no matter how near or far and I’ll continue to share fun tips, ideas, and resources with fellow grandparents near and far. Along with caregiving ideas and resources for our beloved seniors here as well as at SandwichINK Real Estate Info where you’ll discover more ideas and interesting examples of multigenerational and aging in place options and issues.

Here are a couple of travel tips I picked up on this last trip, just for you. If you are flying to visit loved ones – young, old, or both – for the holidays  and haven’t yet bought your tickets, I just spotted an  article at Forbes – Holiday Airfare Tips For Last Minute Shoppers.

I would recommend packing a new (or old favorite) game that they do NOT have at their house. Something new, or not used in a while, is always more interesting and you could end up having a series of competitions for the whole visit – quite enjoyable I must say. Just be sure to take a game(s) you also like. :)

Kaye Swain loves playing chess and checkers with the grandkids

If you are able to visit often, you might want to consider asking if it’s ok to leave a box of goodies just for your visits. In the past, I’ve kept a stash of canned nuts for late-night hunger attacks, 3 favorite games they only play with me, a couple of books we treasure, and a change of clothes just in case I make it but my suitcase doesn’t. That can be a big stress relief!

As long distance grandparents, we may not get as many memories over the year, but if we make the most of the moments we are there, our memories can be just as powerful and impactful – for them AND for us.

My three most powerful memories from my last trips were centered on helping others in need including preparing Samaritan’s Purse Christmas shoeboxes – a long standing tradition we love, studying Bible verses together, and fun games whether we won OR lost. Moments I will treasure forever!

And speaking of holidays – HAVE A BLESSED AND BEAUTIFUL THANKSGIVING WHEREVER YOU MAY BE!

P.S. A fun Thanksgiving coloring page for grandkids (or beloved seniors) (and one already in color) to turn into place cards or holiday home decor.

Happy Thanksgiving place card make easy crafts for kids and seniors black and white coloring page

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving place card make easy crafts for kids and seniors black and white coloring page

 

 

 

 

 

Fun for grandparents whether at home or out and about at the Grand Social

Spiritual Sundays are full of encouraging and comforting BIble verses and praise music to lift the hearts of the Sandwich Generation

Beverlys Pink Saturday is full of fun things for SandwichINK Real Estate Info - including the occasional pink house

 

Kaye

P.S. Thank you so much for your comments. I enjoy them very much and read each one. I also love the grand ideas so many of you share that help and encourage other readers. Thank you.

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Kaye Swain Multigenerational caregiver and REALTOR is really looking forward to a Roseville CA Thanksgiving

Welcome!

It’s been quite a while since my last blog round-up and with the holidays upon us, it seemed like a good time to share some of the great resources I’ve been sharing on Facebook, Twitter, and beyond for all of us boomers and seniors, grandparents and caregivers, many doing both at once in a lovely multigenerational mix.

Eldercare

Alz.org has an excellent article on Holidays and Alzheimer’s (or other dementia) Families – for that matter, I would think many of these ideas would also be useful for our aging senior parents who don’t have dementia but may have normal memory loss due to aging, or who may have a hard time in new situations.

Elder Falls! It’s a growing concern among doctors and families as the “Silver Tsunami” of aging boomers and seniors continues to swell. Bracing for the Falls of an Aging Nation from the New York Times.

50 Tips for a Happy Holiday Season for our multigenerational families and aging seniors.

Grandparenting and Multigenerational Holiday Fun

There is a wealth of great ideas for holiday ideas all around the internet, many of which are easy to do – vital for multigenerational caregivers! Here are some of the many ideas for all ages that I’ve been sharing at my Facebook page – SandwichINK for the Sandwich Generation  –

Like this cool Turkey cheeseball!

 

And how about these adorable snowmen

Cute crafts to give thanks from Parents Magazine. Great and easy crafts for kids that also could work well with our elderly seniors.

Here’s a Pinterest board on the topic of easy crafts and activities for seniors and kids and I just added some new items including puzzles for those with memory loss including from Alzheimer’s Disease

Dollar Tree is a such a great resource for grandparents, don’t you think? It’s an especially BIG help to a busy grandparents’ budget!

Here’s another fun holiday craft idea – wouldn’t this be a great Thanksgiving weekend project with the grandkids? :)

Granddog Joys

Awwww – I couldn’t resist! Look at one of my cute granddogs on guard – using the Tangle Mobile App. (My grandkids and I do LOVE mobile apps, not to mention how handy many of them are for a variety of business needs like my real estate business! :) )

One of my granddog guardians who lives in Roseville CA-Kaye Swain REALTOR

Thank you

Thank you so much for stopping by. It’s been a treat to share these cute ideas and posts with you as you prepare for Thanksgiving and start pondering Christmas as well.Don’t forget to check my Facebook page for boomers and seniors and grandparents regularly for even more fun ideas and resources for our busy multigenerational needs! And for aging in place ideas and resources, click here and here. :) See you soon!

P.S. For some reason, the last WordPress update “broke” my comments – I’m hoping it’s only temporary. But if you’d like to comment, please feel free to do so at my Facebook page – just click here. And again, thank you for stopping by. :)

Beverlys Pink Saturday is full of fun things for SandwichINK Real Estate Info - including the occasional pink house

Kaye Swain REALTOR has Fun and so will other boomers and seniors and grandparents whether at home or out and about working at their real estate business at the Grand Social

Kaye

P.S. Thank you so much for your comments. I enjoy them very much and read each one. I also love the grand ideas so many of you share that help and encourage other readers. Thank you.

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Happy Harvest and Happy Halloween greetings from Kaye Swain Grandma Caregiver Sandwich Generation Baby Boomer and REALTORWe are at the beginning of the holiday season as well as in the midst of full-on autumn bliss around here. Changes have been occurring and will keep coming and I’ll be sharing those soon. But in the meantime, I was blessed to enjoy a visit with long-distance grandkids. And I didn’t travel alone this time. I had a very dashing and dapper companion, although he did have to be a bit squished…in a suitcase…. But oh my, the look on the grandkids’ faces made it all worthwhile!

This sweet scarecrow has been fun for kids and grandkids in Roseville California and beyond-Kaye Swain REALTOR

Yes, indeed. Our beloved scarecrow. That fellow has been in our family for over 16 years and my grandkids and I LOVE him. So I packed him up, took him to visit, and now he and I are safely back and he is ready for the cute trick or treaters coming later this week.

My senior mom and I are off to pick up more candy and plenty of cute pass it ons to share sweets and the sweet Word of God with all the cutie pies coming to visit and looking forward to it. This year we will have an extra helper – one of my granddogs. He is going to be coming over to show off his costume

Pssst – sneak preview

Granddogs can be great therapy for elderly seniors in Roseville and beyond-Kaye Swain REALTOR

and then will stay a bit to keep great-grandma company and maybe even snooze with her, while I greet the big and little-uns at the front door. And I’m expecting a HUGE smile on his face when I take his cute costume OFF! He’s very sweet and patient at being dressed up but… Unlike a another pooch my senior mom just told me about who LOVES to dress up. :)

We all had holiday fun last weekend. My grandkids enjoyed various harvest fest fun and I got to help with our church’s Halloween party for the church and our local area. Quite fun and so many smiling faces!

 

A lovely Red Cardinal-none in Roseville California but blue birds aplenty on the West Coast-Kaye Swain REALTOR

Some of my grandchildren and their costumes-Kaye Swain REALTOR

A mysterious joy for grandparents in Roseville CA-Kaye Swain REALTOR

Life does bring a continual series of changes, doesn’t it. Yet through it all, it’s nice that some things stay fairly constant – especially sweet smiles from grandkids, senior parents, granddogs and scarecrows. How about you? How is your Halloween week going? Got any fun ideas for the grandkids or the trick or treaters? Do you have a granddog who is dressing up? Yes! We’d love to hear and/or see pix. :) Have a fun time!

P.S. I shared this adorable hair costume link at Facebook.com/SandwichINKforTheSandwichGeneration –  Be sure to click LIKE as that page gets updated several times a week.

P.P.S. You can find more fun holiday ideas at my Pinterest boards – CLICK HERE and be sure to follow all as I update Pinterest regularly as well.

P.P.S. Be sure to check out my past articles on Halloween fun including these.  :)

Fun for grandparents whether at home or out and about at the Grand Social

Kaye

P.S. Thank you so much for your comments. I enjoy them very much and read each one. I also love the grand ideas so many of you share that help and encourage other readers. Thank you.

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Autumn is approaching from Roseville California to Kentucky to Virginia-Kaye Swain REALTORIt’s September, it’s Autumn (my FAVORITE season), AND it’s National Preparedness Month 2014! Not only that, on September 30 it will be the National Prepareathon when FEMA, the CDC, the government, the Red Cross and others would like to see us STOP and TALK about getting prepared in case of a natural disaster, national emergency, or terrorism. Not a fun subject, I know, but a vital one for all of us, including our kids and grandkids.

Now before I show you something really cute for kids, I want to remind all of us – as grandparents, it’s ALWAYS wise to check with the parents first before warning grandkids about scary things. They often know of problems like night terrors that might require a more cautious way of sharing things. For that matter, we grandparents have such a grand impact on our grands, something can sometimes seem more scary if we talk about it than if the parents talk about it. So show this to your kids first, get their blessing – hopefully, and then have fun sharing this. It’s really cute, while making an important point. :)

Wasn’t that fun! I must admit, I wanted more. Hmmmmm, I wonder if there’s a full-length version in the works. It wouldn’t surprise me. And that’s not all! They have a whole site dedicated to emergency preparation tips for kids and grandkids, including an intriguing looking game – FEMA for KIDS . I’ll have to show that to my grandkids next time we get together.

In the meantime, have a great week enjoying fall foliage (or as we  like to say – enjoy the autumn ballet), while reminding our kids and grandkids to practice safety here and there. :)

Fun for grandparents - in AND out of the Sandwich Generation - at Grand Social

Kaye

P.S. Thank you so much for your comments. I enjoy them very much and read each one. I also love the grand ideas so many of you share that help and encourage other readers. Thank you.

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Kaye Swain and other grandparents often fly to visit grandchildren-including from Sacramento airportMobile Grandparents – On the Go

Our nation is more mobile now than probably any time in history. Yes, the famous words “Go West Young Man,” reportedly spoken by Horace Greeley, are indicative of all the people through the years who traveled far away, leaving friends and family for years, if not forever. But now, we have people going back and forth hundreds of miles-by plane, bus, car, and train – sometimes on a  daily occurrence. And yes, that includes plenty of grandparents visiting long distance grandkids.

That can be a challenge, can’t it? Compressing weeks, months, or even a whole year worth of hugs, kisses, and sharing into one week – give or take. How do we do it? Can we do it? YES we can. I have done it often for years, as have many of my relatives and friends including Lisa of Grandma’s Briefs. We are here to assure any new long distance grandparents, you CAN keep close relationships despite the distance. How?

Staying Close While Grandparenting Long Distance

  1. For me, first and foremost, is prayer – As I read today in Colossians 1 during my daily Bible study,  “For this reason also, since the day we heard of it, we have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that you will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience; joyously giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light.”  It’s a grand model of what and how to pray for all of our loved ones, including our sweet grandchildren. What a blessed way to leave a sweet spiritual legacy, don’t you think?
  2. Phone calls – It’s been interesting. Not all grandchildren like to talk on the telephone. Of my many grandkids, one LOVES to talk on the phone – she’s my little phone-buddy. A few HATE to talk on the phone. The rest are rather mixed so we get to occasionally but not super lots. Makes me doubly grateful for texting, snail mail, and visits.
  3. Read or sing together – in person or on the phone. I love to read to my grandchildren and they enjoy being read to. Over the years I’ve read a few books to them on the phone or sung fun songs to them. One grandchild loves to read to me and that’s interesting as well. She picks out a favorite book periodically which gives us a fun time on the phone and a chance to learn more about her and her likes. Times change though. A few are getting old enough and are such great readers, that special time has ended for them and me. But now, they’ve moved on to…
  4. Texting – a handful of my grandkids are old enough to get to use a family smart phone for occasional texting with family or close friends. That has opened up fun times of text chatting and playing Words with Friends or Carcassonne long distance. It tends to go in spurts – a bunch of texts/plays for a half hour, then nothing for days. But that does work well around my work schedule.
  5. iPhone or other Smart Phone Games – in person and across the miles My grandkids and I have enjoyed Words with Friends and Carcassone sitting side by side or hundreds of miles apart. Hangman is another favorite of ours – cuddling close or driving in the car (they do all the word picking unless we come to a stop, then I can pick one for them – but mostly it’s them picking the word and me guessing without being able to look). Talk about great brain exercise for both of us!
  6. Board Game Fun – Granted, most people don’t play these from long distance but I frequently travel with two or three of our favorite board games in my suitcase to enjoy with the grandkids when I get there. A simpler solution is to gift those favorite games to them at birthdays or Christmas and then play them when you visit. Trouble, Sequence and Chess continue to be favorites of my grandkids with me – while Risk is a favorite for them and their other set of grandparents – my sweet “co-grandparents.” :) (If y’all are into chess big time that IS a board game that can be played without seeing the board, using just the names of the board squares. We don’t do that, but it could be fun for chess fans!)
  7. Face time – YES, we often see our picture on that Facetime screen and feel like we look ODD on Facetime, but generally speaking, the kids don’t care how they or we look. So I have just learned to ignore what I look like and cherish the moments of enjoying what my grandkids look like. :)
  8. Video Fun – Some grandparents do videos the normal, traditional, serious way. Thanks to an Instagram friend, my grandkids and I do it hilariously, using Crazy Helium Booth (the paid version). Every so often, we’ll videotape ourselves talking and text it to each other – enjoying great laughter in the process.
  9. Crafts – You know me, so you knew this was coming. Here are some of the things I took with me on my last driving trip to grandkids. I wound up having more time than I thought, though, so had to make an emergency run to Michael’s Crafts for even more craft goodies! The funny thing was, though, we immediately got immersed in something else and the extra goodies ended up staying unused – waiting for a sick day with their mom or my next visit. All in all, though, we had a great time, a lovely visit, and made some cute projects, affordably thanks to the Dollar Store. Now that I’m home, I’m always watching out for fun ideas to share with you on Facebook as well as to save for ideas for my next visit OR to pass on to the moms and grandkids to enjoy now. Craft projects also make great gifts – for birthdays, holidays, or just plain “I’m bored” days. Even though I might not be there when they make them, I still got to be a part of them having educational and tactile fun with crafts from a long way away. Very cool to think about!
  10. Snail Mail - My senior mom sticks with snail mail and she and the grandkids all love that. They thrill to get mail, enjoy the cards she picks out or the articles she clips and sends them. She even subscribes to a couple of fun magazines including Birds and Bloom and A kids nature magazine. She clips fun photos and activities from these magazines and sends them to various grandchildren. Again, great brain food for both her and them.

Grand Resources for Grandparents

It helps that we are not alone. There are many long distance grandparents out there and plenty of terrific resources to help us, including:

Grandparents who live far away from grandchildren definitely have some extra challenges. You’ve heard some of my best tips for dealing with it. Now it’s your turn. Do you have any special tips for long distance grandparenting? We’d love to hear!

 

Spiritual Sundays are full of encouraging and comforting BIble verses and praise music to lift the hearts of the Sandwich Generation

Fun for grandparents - in AND out of the Sandwich Generation - at Grand Social

Kaye

P.S. Thank you so much for your comments. I enjoy them very much and read each one. I also love the grand ideas so many of you share that help and encourage other readers. Thank you.

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