5 Ways Grandparents Can Stay Connected to Grandkids in Different States
In many ways, families are more spread out than ever before. It is becoming more common for people to move to a different state than the one they grew up in, and thus, many parents and grandparents find their kids living in a different state than them. While this is true, it is also true that we have more technology centered around connecting us than ever before. With text, email, video chat software, and social media, we are incredibly well connected as a global community. With a number of ways to stay connected, grandparents need not fear losing connection to their grandkids. Here are five ways grandparents can stay connected to grandkids in different states.
While it is not the only video chat application, FaceTime is one of the simplest ways for grandparents to stay connected to their grandkids. So long as both parties have an Apple device, they need only to open the FaceTime application and call one another. This allows them to talk over video from anywhere with a WiFi connection (or decent cellular data). There are a number of effective ways to use FaceTime to connect with grandkids.
First, schedule a time each week or month. Know that you are video chatting at that time, and decide that you will catch up with each other in your lives. Alternatively, so long as you know your grandkids schedules, the occasional spur-of-the-moment FaceTime call never hurts, and can help you develop a more comfortable relationship.
Next, a great thing to try in your FaceTime connectivity is searching for games to play on FaceTime. This can be anything from Pictionary, to Charades, to even finding a game that uses the FaceTime app to be played. Games bring us together in a special way, and playing games on FaceTime may be the trick to making FaceTime communication regular and easy.
Lastly, try to share moments together over FaceTime. This might be setting up a laptop running FaceTime during dinner, and simply eating together from two different places. Maybe you watch a movie together. Regardless of what you do, sharing these types of moments together allows you to connect without the stress of creating something “to do.”
2. Write Letters
This may be a little bit old fashioned, but writing letters to one another can be quite fun for young kids. They get to wait for a letter from grandma and grandpa, they check the mailbox, and they get to develop their communication skills. This allows grandkids to send their grandparents drawings, pictures, and even packages, as well as build a type of tradition.
3. Build Tradition
Speaking of tradition, building traditions can be another great way to stay connected with your grandkids. Whether it’s an annual meet-up, strange gifts that you send one another, or something especially unique to your relationship, traditions help us preserve relationships over distance and time. They allow us to pick up where we left off, no matter how long it’s been.
Work with your grandkids to develop a tradition that can maintain itself as they age and time passes. These things may take some time to build, but can be incredibly successful and fun once a groove is found.
4. Have a Group Text
Creating a family group text, especially amongst grandchildren can be a great way to stay connected with them. Today’s generation communicates rapidly, and most easily over text. Requiring them to call, or email can be a difficult thing to keep consistent from them. Texting, however, is quite easy for today’s generation,
Become well-versed with texting lingo, and the offerings of text communication. Make sure that you have a capable smartphone, and start a group text with your grandkids. Text them to see how they’re doing, what’s going on, or to share things that remind you of them. This small, consistent thing may prove to be one of the most effective methods to retain a connection with your grandkids. Additionally, this allows you to participate in interactions between your grandkids, and get a deeper insight into the world that they live in.
5. Ask Your Grandkids What They Want
Express your desire to stay connected to your grandkids to them. Ask them what ways they are most willing and able to do so, and try that. The best way to connect with almost anyone is to make it a two way street. The invitation to your grandkids to have an input in the process allows them to have some ownership over the method and the action. This may easily prove the most successful way to create consistency, and intentionality in your endeavor to create, and maintain a relationship with your grandkids.
Remember, it’s about connectivity, so meet them where they’re at!