Doing things with your Grandparents can feel strained and unappealing when you each have different tastes and enjoy different things. The key is in finding an activity that is fun for all involved...but that can be easier said than done.
Tyne unfortunately only has one set of grandparents alive - Jon's parents both died quite young, and so unfortunately Tyne never got to meet them.
This makes his relationship with my parents all the more important in my eyes, and fortunately they are rather young-at-heart as far as grandparents go.
As a child, I too lost most of my grandparents very young - my Grandfather on my Dad's side passed away when he was 15...long before I was born, and my Grandmother on my Mum's side died when I was 5 so I don't have any real memory of her.
My Grandad on my mum's side died when I was around 10, so I remember him quite well - he was very much a stereotypical grumpy old man - or so he seemed to 10 year old me! - but I do remember some funny things about him like the mermaid tattoos on his arm that he would always make dance for us, and his funny faces that he'd pull when he took his teeth out!! And I remember he always saved us some of his favourite Yorkie bar too...bless him!
My Nan however was amazing for her age, and she was with us until last Summer...she always seemed quite old to me but really she kept herself young - she played rounders with us at the beach, and I would often go to stay over at her house and she'd take me on a bus ride to Lewis's in town to meet Uncle Lawrie for a coffee and a cake...or sometimes she'd take me to the Urban farm which I loved!
These memories of a childhood spend with her are very precious, especially now that she's gone, and of course I want Tyne to have the same sorts of memories with his grandparents too.
My Dad is now 66 and my Mum is 57...though they seem much much younger! Here are just a few of the activities that they enjoy with their grandkids that you might want to consider with your own grandparents, if you're lucky enough to still have them around...
My mum & Dad love going out for meals...and as a mini-foodie in the making like his Mum, so does Tyne!
After all...eating is something you both do at least three times a day. So you should both be able to fit it into your agenda somewhere. You’ll have to agree on what to eat, but perhaps you could introduce each other to different types of food. They could introduce you to a dish they had in wartime and you could take them to a sushi place. Food is great because it sparks conversation, memory and can create great memories also. A good restaurant can be the start of a fun relationship with your grandparents.
City Ferris Wheels
You know the ones I mean. I think for a city to be called a city nowadays you have to have a cathedral and an audio-toured ferris wheel. That’s a lie, but you know what I mean. They’re everywhere. You probably wouldn’t go on one with your mates unless it was the London Eye but they are perfect to take the elderly on. You and your grandparent could get a whistle stop tour of your city or a neighbouring city from the comfort of a ferris wheel’s booth. If you really want to splash out on them you could get the VIP booth and have a party with your nan at 60 metres.
Go to a performance of a film score
With more and more Local philharmonic halls doing film score performances, you should take the opportunity to go and see one with your grandparents. If you do not have an interest in classical music and you’re grandparents do it’s the perfect middle ground. You get to watch a film, usually something amazing like Jurassic Park or Star Wars and they get the joy of hearing a live orchestra play out the most fantastic of scores. A great and memorable night out for you both.
Play on the Wii or Wii-U together.
Nintendo were so clever with the creation of their 7th generation console. Instead of catering to hard core gamers, like the PS3 and Xbox 360 did, they decided to open out the arena of the video game and they created a console that anyone with hands can play. Wii Sports, the flagship game that came with the Wii console, put gamers of any age or gaming ability on the same level and allowed them to play Tennis, Bowling, Baseball and Golf. Wii sports is perfect to play with your grandparents as it will
give you all the competitive giggles of a board game but it’ll actually be fun. You can play it sitting down too, despite all the adverts showing how active everyone can be with the game.
If you’re looking for any more interesting things to do with elderly people have a look at the activities they do in the Extra Care care homes, they’re actually pretty fun too.