Vis­it­ing grandma

HOL­I­DAYS: CHIL­DREN’S FAVOURITE PE­RIOD TO GO SEE GRAND­PAR­ENTS Younger kids are likely to need more clothes as they get dirty quicker. And com­fort is vi­tal.

The Citizen (Gauteng) - - CITY - Tshep­iso Makhele

Istill re­mem­ber the ex­cite­ment I used to have when the time to visit my grand­mother came. This for me was more ex­cit­ing than get­ting Christ­mas clothes or go­ing to an amuse­ment park.

It mat­tered not to me that grandma stayed in Lim­popo, five hours away from my home, in Ga-Mashashane vil­lage, where at the time there was no elec­tric­ity and there were only two or three wa­ter taps for all fam­i­lies in her sec­tion.

What mat­tered at that time was that I was go­ing to get to see koko (grandma), and I knew she was go­ing to spoil me rot­ten with the lit­tle that she had and all the love and ten­der kisses. For me, just like most kids, a visit to my grand­par­ents dur­ing this time of the year was an event to look for­ward to.

Time with my grand­par­ents usu­ally in­volved sim­ple ac­tiv­i­ties. For me, it was a sim­ple trip to the moun­tain or their farm, where we ate wa­ter­melon and maize while sit­ting un­der a tree and lis­ten­ing to grandma telling us all sorts of sto­ries.

So when a child vis­its their grand­par­ents, trust me, it’s best to pack plenty of clothes for the length of the stay for a va­ri­ety of ac­tiv­i­ties. The last thing you want is for the grand­par­ents to have to wash the kid’s clothes. It can be a bit too much for them.

Younger kids are more likely to need more clothes as they get dirty quicker. Com­fort is im­por­tant to con­sider: if your child

has a favourite stuffed toy, pil­low or blan­ket, in­clude that in their bag. You will be sur­prised at how anx­ious kids get when they are away from home, even when they are with peo­ple they love like grand­par­ents, so these com­fort items work won­ders.

These are what’s called se­cu­rity items, and can help to keep the kid calm, con­tent and happy. No grand­par­ent wants an ir­ri­ta­ble kid who is strug­gling to sleep be­cause mommy for­got her favourite pil­low.

My lit­tle girl is ex­actly that. She has this one pil­low she has been us­ing for a while, and will not put her head on any pil­low ... fussy, I know.

Kids and their toys. Ev­ery par­ent knows how in­tense that re­la­tion­ship can be, and you don’t want to be the one who for­got to pack their beloved toys in their travel bag.

An oc­cu­pied child is a happy child. While you are busy with pack­ing the toys, don’t for­get to pack essen­tials like tooth­brush, tooth­paste, soap, med­i­ca­tion if they take one, and their favourite snacks.

Grandma and grandpa will ap­pre­ci­ate the thought.

Also, it can be a kind ges­ture to bring along some fam­ily pic­tures for grand­par­ents to see and keep a few for them­selves.

It’s very im­por­tant for kids to know what rules to fol­low dur­ing their visit, such as pack­ing up their toys af­ter play­ing, hang­ing their wash­ing rags out­side or sim­ple things like help­ing granny with the dishes af­ter

eat­ing.

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