There are grandparent blogs in profusion now. Sometimes I like to check them out, if for no other reason than to confirm that I have absolutely nothing in common with these people. Let me just start by saying that many of these sites perform a worthy service, addressing serious subjects affecting children’s wellbeing. I’m not talking about them. I’m talking about the blogger whose apparent goal is to be just the best damned grandma on the internet.
These are the folks who crochet a complete 21-piece layette in a day and make their own touchy-feely books out of fabric scraps. Often you can recognize them by their fixation on Pinterest.com, where they are forever pinning pictures of their latest project while urging you to find your own creative muse.
Occasionally, when I feel I am not living up to my matriarchal potential, I will visit Pinterest and do a search for “things to make for grandkids.” I have found that this brings me back to reality in short order. Here is a sample of what you find.
DIY CLOTH DIAPER MADE FROM BABY BLANKET
First, let me state the obvious. This is a DIAPER. It’s entire raison d’etre is catching poop in all its forms. It will be put through the wash approximately 99 times in six months, after which it will be unrecognizable.
I have six grandkids. Had I attempted to make a mere dozen of these for each one at birth, that’s 72 diapers. If I continued to make them in ever bigger sizes until they were all potty trained, we’re talking well over 500. How OCD would you have to be just to start such a project?
VEGETABLE SKELETON, “SOMETHING FUN TO MAKE”
The assumption here is that I have nine different kinds of fresh vegetables in my refrigerator at one time. To my knowledge, I have never achieved that lofty goal. Then I’m supposed to believe that, should I actually go to the trouble of assembling a veggie skeleton for each grandchild, they would eat it. I know them. The only way most of them might finish it is if there were a Minecraft clue hidden underneath. The more likely scenario is that they will be chucking broccoli and carrot sticks at each other across the table.
AROMATHERAPY PLAY DOUGH
That’s “Peppermint for focus, Basil for balancing, Lavender for relaxation, Orange for positive energy.”
All you need (in addition to the basic dough formula) is:
4 T coconut oil
2 T Redmond clay
2 tsp Xylitol
Pinch of Redmond Real Salt
2 tsp organic lemon extract
20-30 drops Liquid Stevia (vanilla)
I actually priced out these ingredients, and the cheapest versions I could find still came to $36.50. I can get a 4-pack of Play-Doh at Target for $2.99, less when it goes on sale. I don’t care that the DIY aromatherapy version will “make all of the difference to a little one’s state of mind.” You know and I know that the little ones are going to play with this for five minutes. Then they will eat it.
BEAN TEPEE HIDEAWAY
Okay, admittedly, you will have the green beans if you can wait “just a couple of months” for this thing to take shape. But personally I have trouble growing tomatoes in pots, so I can’t imagine what my tepee would look like should I attempt such an undertaking. Not like this, I’ll bet. Then I’d have to convince the grandkids that it’s just like playing in a plastic pop-up tepee from Toys R Us. They might buy that right up until the time a spider landed on someone’s head. I assure you I would never get Grace into it.
GRANDMA’S BRAG BOARD (JUST ONE OF MANY VARIATIONS)
Huh? I thought that’s what the front of the refrigerator was for.
LEMONADE STAND MADE FROM AN OLD CABINET
Well, who doesn’t have an old cabinet, a chalkboard and four wheeled casters lying around? Knock this together and you’ll be able to park the grandkids at the end of the driveway, where they can earn money for that college education – or approximately 75 cents a day.
Here’s the lemonade station my grandkids and some friends set up this summer while their parents were attempting to unload crap at their yard sale.
BUDDING ENTREPRENEURS AT WORK
Of course, it doesn’t have the panache of the Pinterest model. But if anyone was in possession of an old cabinet, a chalkboard and four wheeled casters, I’m guessing they were probably on sale in the yard.
I could go on, but why?
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Veggie skeleton: feedingfourlittlemonkeys.blogspot.com
Play dough: skiptomylou.org
Bean tepee: todaysmama.com
Brag board: emmymom2.com
Lemonade stand: mycreativedays.com