Welcome to a place where we can share ideas about grandparenting, especially ways to pass spiritual values and family stories to the next generation.

Mary is the co-author of The Grandparent Connection: 365 Ways to Connect With Your Grandchild's Heart.
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Co-author of The Grandparent Connection: 365 Ways to Connect With Your Grandchild's Heart

Friday, July 31, 2009

Baptism of a grandchild

Friday's Grand Connection Fun
by Mary May Larmoyeux

Our oldest grandchild is getting baptized this Sunday and Pops and I will be at the service. What a wonderful day it will be!

Pops and I wanted to give this granddaughter a gift and decided on a necklace with a small cross. If I get my act together, I'll also write her a special letter from Pops and me. It will encourage her to hold firm in her faith ... to remember that Jesus Christ will never disappoint her ... to know that He is her stronghold, refuge and savior (2 Samuel 22:3).

I googled "baptism gifts" and found some great ideas:

personalized Bibles, crosses, silver baby keepsake

One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism - Copper Finish Frame

"Remember Me sterling sliver necklace" - of a lamb

Psalm 23 plaque

Besides giving our grandchild a necklace with a beautiful multicolored cross (which reminds me of a multicolored life), I want to write her a second letter about her decision. It will be sealed in an envelope for her to open when she is 18 years old and put in a keepsake notebook. In this letter will be Pops' and my testimonies and some words that will hopefully encourage her to live a life pleasing to God, regardless of what society says about values and the purpose of life.

Have any of your grandchildren been baptized? Do you have any suggestions for Pops and me? Did you give your grand a gift or write him/her a special letter?

Have a great weekend!

He is able,
Mary
www.marymaywrites.com

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© 2009 by Mary May Larmoyeux. All rights reserved.
Photo © by Mary May Larmoyeux. All rights reserved.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Crafts from Popsicle Sticks

Friday's Grand Connection Fun
by Mary May Larmoyeux

Before we talk about a fun, easy craft, I wanted to give you an update about my visit with a granddaughter last weekend. I asked her to tell me about vacation Bible school and said, "Was it was fun, scary, etc.?" She answered that it was a little scary at the beginning because she didn't know anyone but then it was a lot of fun and that she made a lot of neat things.

Talk about fun ... Here's our Friday's Fun idea—Popsicle crafts. They can provide hours of fun!

A few months ago one of our granddaughters made the cutest picture frame with popsicle sticks. She colored four of them with magic markers, and then we glued them together with wood glue. She added her decorative touch to the frame, and it was ready for a picture (to be glued to the back of the frame).

I googled “Popsicle crafts” and discovered countless ideas. One is a “tick-tac-toe” board. It’s so simple to make! Place and glue four Popsicle sticks onto a piece of heavy construction paper—so that they make the shape of a tic-tac-toe board. Then cut out three identical objects for the “x’s” and “o’s” (these could be slipped into a zip-lock bag for storage). That’s all there is to it—presto… you have a travel game for the car.

You may want to check out the dollar store for Popsicle/craft sticks. I bought a package of multicolored sticks there for ... yep, $1.

Have a great weekend!
Mary
www.marymaywrites.com

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© 2009 by Mary May Larmoyeux. All rights reserved.

Photo by Ami Beyer. © Ami Beyer | Dreamstime.com.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Three Words

Friday's Grand Connection Fun
by Mary May Larmoyeux

Earlier this week, a friend of mine asked on her blog, "What are three words that best describe you?" And then a couple of days ago at a Toastmasters meeting, a man gave a talk called, "Seven nouns that describe me."

What words would you select to describe yourself? What words would your grandchild choose to describe himself/herself?

It would be fun to answer these questions over lunch with a grandchild. For out-of-town grands, this could be done by phone or e-mail.

We might write down various nouns on a page for the younger crowd, for example: friend, helper, sister, brother, gymnast, soccer player, daughter, son, grandchild, dog owner, complainer, ballet dancer, Boy Scout, Girl Scout, student, tickler, etc.

Or, choose from a list of adjectives such as: joyful, funny, loving, hardworking, studious, friendly, fat, thin, serious, worried, happy, busy, bored, tall, short, patient, kind, mean, scared, trusting, tired, energetic, etc. (This could be done verbally or by circling words.)

We could also ask our grands to choose nouns or adjectives to tell us about their best friends.

After our grandkids share, we could choose words that describe ourselves ... and our friends.

My guess is that this little exercise will open up communication lines.

Two of our little grands are coming over this weekend. I think I'll ask the four year old to choose words to describe herself to me and I'll select some to describe myself. I'll let you know how it goes.

Have a great weekend,
Mary
www.marymaywrites.com

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© 2009 by Mary May Larmoyeux. All rights reserved.
Photo © 2005 by Daniel Wildman. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Celebrating the simple things

Tuesday’s Grand Connection Thought
by Mary May Larmoyeux

One of my favorite books is Let’s Make a Memory by Gloria Gaither and Shirley Dobson. I love what Gloria says, "Special moments don’t just happen; they have to be planned on purpose! In this hectic world when the pace at which we all live is so frantic, we as families must make a covenant with each other to make time for simple things. … We have no guarantees of tomorrows, but we do have this moment."

As a grandmother, I’m so aware that there are no guarantees of tomorrow, and I'm realizing how quickly the grandkids will grow up. I hope that you and I will both heed Gloria’s advice and take time for the simple things with our grands: walking in the rain, picking flowers, looking into the clouds together—marveling at the great God who created everything.

Speaking of making moments count, I'd like to share some of your wonderful memory-making ideas over the past months. Elaine once commented that she wrote a prayer for each grandchild and sent the prayers to the adult children to pray for each particular child. She also said that on one of her granddaughter’s birthdays, she and husband made a list of "10 Reasons we appreciate Kelli." Elaine added, "She was thrilled. We put it on poster board and then laminated it."

Sharon B. mentioned an age-old favorite memory-maker that I had forgotten about—catching lightning bugs. And Sharon T. reminded us of how much fun it is to take a grandchild to a local parade.

Karen has sweet memories of identifying shapes in the clouds with her grands. She said, "I enjoyed listening to my grandson, Ethan, talk about the shapes he could see in the clouds. We even found Spiderman—can you believe it!"

"With siblings and cousins," Rita said, "we’d take turns, one at a time, climb inside a big rubber tire, roll down cousin’s ten foot high terrace across the entire side yard and crash into the pasture fence, or a tree, get out all wobbly legs and go for more."

When you and I make the effort to capture everyday moments with our grandkids, it's like we're tying our hearts together with a great, big invisible red bow over our priceless gift to one another, unconditional love.

Let's make a memory ... today,
Mary
www.marymaywrites.com

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© 2009 by Mary May Larmoyeux. All rights reserved.
Photo © 2008 by Mary May Larmoyeux. All rights reserved.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Puzzle fun!

Friday's Grand Connection Fun
by Mary May Larmoyeux

Two of the grands were at the house last night and they had a great time putting a package of School Zone puzzle cards together to make three-letter words. For example: the entire picture of a dog was on three 4x6 cards (the ears and head were on one card: D; his stomach on another: O; and the third card had his tail: G).

From a stack of cards, the kids had to find the three cards that formed the picture of the dog and put them together. Then the older grandchild spelled the word by looking at the letters.

It would be so easy to make our own sets of puzzle cards. We could do this by printing pictures on cardstock and cutting each picture into pieces. If we wanted to make easy three-word puzzles for the young crowd, we could print a picture (example, family dog) on cardstock, cut it in thirds, and put the individual letters of a word on the separate pieces.

We could make larger printed pictures (on cardstock) for the older crowd, and cut them into many pieces.

Here are some more puzzle ideas. The website Discovery Education has a neat puzzle-making program! In a few minutes we can make a maze, word search, hidden message puzzle, and more. I want to bookmark this site. Wouldn't it be great to mail special, custom-designed puzzles to the long-distance grandkids!

Do you work puzzles with your grands or have special childhood memories of putting puzzles together?

Have fun,
Mary
www.marymaywrites.com

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© 2009 by Mary May Larmoyeux. All rights reserved.