Children need their grandparents at every stage of their youth. The wisdom and love of older generations can help lead a child through even trying times, though it can be difficult to stay connected when they live far apart from each other. While separation creates challenges, many seniors have found new and creative ways to be long-distance grandparents throughout their grandchildren’s lives. We’ve created a list of some of their most inspired ideas.
Ideas for How to Be a Long-Distance Grandparent by Age
Babies and Toddlers
1. Record yourself reading a book
While a little one’s brain is growing fast, give them the opportunity to recognize your face and voice. You can use a smartphone to create a video of you reading a favorite children’s book, or you could simply record the audio.
2. Share story time over Skype or FaceTime
You can also make story time a live show. You could set up appointments to read your grandkids stories over video chat. You spend great bonding time with them, and new parents will always be grateful for the help.
3. Write monthly letters
Everyone loves to receive mail, especially young kids. A letter is a great way to find out about your grandkids, especially if you ask them fun questions. Maybe skip, “How are you?” and ask, “What was something you learned today?” or “Tell me three wonderful things that happened to you today.” Keep a record of their answers, and as your grandchildren grow up, you can revisit the letters together.
4. Create an art showcase
Ask your grandkids (or their parents) to send you some of the art projects they create. You can put them up on your door, on your refrigerator, in a frame on your wall, and then send them a picture of their art in that place of pride.
5. Send special treats
If you have a family recipe, send your grandkids a care package. Think how grateful they’ll be to get a batch of delicious cookies or banana bread just for them. Knowing a treat connects them to their family will make the gesture especially sweet.
Teenagers and Adults
6. Call them regularly
Whether it’s video chats or good old-fashioned phone calls, regular conversations can help you stay in touch with them as they grow and evolve. You can simply call when the mood strikes or set a regular appointment to talk.
7. Follow them on social media
You may use Facebook, Instagram or even TikTok. Many young adults share their lives on social media. By following them, long-distance grandparents can see updates from their everyday adventures, learn the names of some of their friends, and find out more about what interests them. These insights may give you great topics for your next conversation.
8. Share family stories
Tales from the past, anecdotes about their parents’ younger days and family history can help connect grandchildren to their ancestry. They may enjoy knowing more about where — and whom — they’ve come from.
As we listen to the smart, fascinating residents at Sedgebrook share their innovative ideas about how to be a long-distance grandparent, we can’t help but feel delighted for these lucky grandchildren. It’s our privilege to serve those seniors and foster a healthy and happy lifestyle so they can share important moments with their families.