10 Ways We Can Help Our Grandchildren Cope
I, like most of you I’m sure, am still stunned by the senseless tragedy that took place in Florida on Valentine’s Day 2018. My heart goes out to the 17 families that lost loved ones in the horrific school shooting.
I sit here watching news updates and still feel stunned. I can’t even imagine what these families, especially the students that went through this event, must be feeling.
This morning I started looking online for ways grandparents can help during times of a crisis. I was stunned to find so little information available!
I hope this post can provide some ways grandparents can help in times of trouble. Not only during school tragedies, but also during tornadoes, hurricanes, or even divorce.
Let them know they are loved.
Help your grandchildren feel safe by letting them know you are there for them and they are loved. Just being present and available when you are needed is important. Just being with my grandchildren helps my feelings also.
Lavish them with extra attention.
Spending extra time with your grandchildren will mean a lot to them. Give them extra hugs during the day. If you are there at bedtime, give an extra cuddle. Giving them just a little extra attention will also help them feel safe, loved, and provide a sense of normalcy.
Take time to listen.
Sometimes they just need to talk. It might be about what they have been through or it might be something else that somehow relates. Whatever it is, make sure you are listening and not just pretending to. They need to know their feelings matter.
They aren’t adults.
Your grandchildren are not adults and shouldn’t be expected to handle a crisis the same way you or I would. Even if they are seniors in high school, they still can’t cope with the same coping skills we have learned. Sometimes we have difficulty coping when a horrific event happens.
Let them play and draw if they are younger.
A younger child may have difficulty voicing how the crisis is affecting them. Through acting out the event in play or drawing a picture of the event might help them verbalize their feelings.
Help your grandchild to mourn.
Whether it is the loss of a home, toy, pet, friend, teacher, parent, or sibling your grandchild needs to be able to release their feelings and know that it is okay to mourn. It is okay to be sad or even cry for our loss. If they don’t handle it well, then get in touch with professional counselors.
It is okay to return to normal activity.
Help them return to normalcy. Try and keep chores at normal schedules if you are there during chore time. Let them slowly start back doing their normal activities. Encourage them to follow their normal routine.
Consider doing volunteer work.
Perhaps your grandchild may benefit from helping others who are going through what they have been through. If they have gone through a tornado or hurricane, encourage them to help prepare a care package for another family, maybe even put one of their toys in the package. They might even write a letter to someone who has faced a loss that they have also faced.
Turn off the television.
When you are with your grandchildren, leave the television off. There is plenty of time to watch news related stories when you are by yourself. Watching the television reports will just keep bringing up the horrendous event they have just come through. Time with your grandchildren should be filled with happiness as much as possible.
Watch your own stress level.
If your stress level gets too high, you will be no good to your children or your grandchildren. Perhaps leaving off the television might be good for you too. Remember that when your stress level is high, your grandchildren can feel it whether you think they can or not. They, too, will be affected by your stress.
I hope that something in this post will help you if your family ever comes face to face with a crisis.
My thoughts and prayers are with each and every one in a crisis.
Surviving Valentine’s Day
How many Valentine’s Day have you really enjoyed? Is it something you look forward to with anticipation? Are you waiting with bated breath and a lump in your throat for the phone to ring? Hoping it is an invitation for a romantic Valentine’s Day? Or are you just trying to survive the day?
Many women, especially over 50, dread the approach of February 14th. The thought of spending the one day set aside for Cupid and romance brings nothing but sadness at having to spend the day alone.
Why Is There Loneliness on Valentine’s Day?
Many women find themselves spending the day alone, whether through the loss of their sweetheart through death or loss of a one-time sweetheart through a divorce. When you are over 50, the prospects become rather dim.
Ellen Freudenheim, author of “Looking Forward: An Optimists Guide to Retirement: tells us just exactly how dim that prospect is. If you are from ages 40 to 64 there are 146 unmarried females compared to 100 unmarried males. Prospects become even slimmer after 65 when it jumps to 315 unmarried females to 100 unmarried males.
Are Women Less Romantic After 50?
Just because a woman turns 50 does not mean she is any less romantic! Mature women are still romantic, sexy and still enjoy intimacy. Many women find they enjoy this time of their lives even more as there are usually no children at home. They also no longer have to worry about pregnancy as they did when they were younger. This gives them a freedom to enjoy intimacy much more.
The 60’s have become the new 40’s! Women still run businesses in their 60’s. Many active women even enjoy running marathons and staying physically fit. Some are still raising families. Many women are finding this new freedom in their lives to enjoy traveling that they once may not have been able to with children. Some even travel the world.
7 Survival Tips for Valentine’s Day
Take the initiative. Maybe there is a guy you have had your eye on but have been too afraid to approach. What better time to approach him than asking him for Valentine’s Day dinner. Especially if you are offering him a home-cooked meal. He may not be a good cook and would greatly enjoy this! Old taboos are thrown out of the window in this new generation.
- Being active. Go to the gym and workout to get those good endorphins flowing. Take a dance class that you have been wanting to take. What better time than to learn the Salsa? Or maybe you are into yoga? Whatever activity you are interested in, you will feel more energetic and it will, in turn, make you feel more beautiful.
- Do it yourself. Many women are now buying Valentine’s gifts for themselves. If you enjoy chocolates, why not get a box of your favorite? A bouquet of roses would beautifully grace your table. New lingerie will make you feel beautiful and sexy.
- Keep your outlook positive. Just because you don’t have a date doesn’t mean you are any less a beautiful woman. Do something you enjoy for yourself. Have a spa day. See a play or a movie. Or do like I do and grab a cup of hot chocolate and watch a romantic Hallmark movie!
- Stay sociable. Why not invite some friends over and have a potluck and do something fun together? You might find that many of your friends would enjoy your invitation. Join a book club where you get to go out and mingle with others. You might be surprised at whom you might meet.
- Don’t overlook single men who are retired or partially retired. Even though you might not be wowed by their appearance at first, you might find a wonderful person who shares your interests.
- Appreciate what you have. Be grateful for your family and the life you have created.
Hopefully, these ideas will help you survive Valentine’s Day. Maybe even find something new and exciting or rewarding.
I hope you have a wonderful Valentine’s Day!
Why Women Over 50 Put Others First
Here we are already in February! Our thoughts turn to Valentine’s Day, skipping the poor groundhog! Before we can learn to love someone else, we need to learn to love ourselves. With this in mind, we will look at why women over 50 put others first.
The Need to Rush to Someone’s Side
We tend to put others first because we feel guilty. If we don’t rush to someone’s side immediately, guilt overwhelms us. This leaves us feeling obliged to respond every time our name is called.
This reminds me of when my daughter was only about 18 months to 2 years. My mother believed you should take your children with you everywhere you go. So, I never really had any alone time. The one time I sought alone time was when I was in the tub. I only wanted at least 5 mins to myself to relax and catch my breath. But she would come back there and wiggle her little fingers under the door, where there was a good-sized crack. She would lay on the floor calling “Mommy, mommy, what you doin’ mommy?” So much for my alone time! I would probably have been a better mother if I had just been allowed a little alone time.
You Can’t Say No
Another way you put others first, saying yes to every project or to people. If you are like me, you don’t know exactly what to say or how to say no. You hate to disappoint anyone. If you do say no, you feel guilty once again.
Someone will come along and tell you that you are the only one that can do it. Such as reading to your son or daughter’s class. The only one who can sit with an elderly person at the hospital. You are desperately needed to teach a Bible School class. You have to bake cookies or make sandwiches.
This leaves you feeling stressed out and stretched thin.
Impossible to Find Time For Yourself
Because you are so busy running errands, waiting for someone, baking cookies, plus the thousand and one things you already have to do in your day, there is no time for you. But you have to put others first.
If you don’t you feel you are a horrible person! I have wonderful news for you! You are not required to do all of this. You need to make time for yourself.
Putting Yourself First
A pitcher that is empty can not pour anything into a cup. Your body knows when it has had enough. Listen to it. You may have to start small and just take it one step at a time. But turning your life around is possible!
Make Yourself a Priority
You need to learn how to say no. It may not be easy at first, but you can find a polite way to turn someone down. Don’t let pride get in the way. You are not doing it to be mean. Now if you have elderly parents who really need your assistance or your family really has something you need to attend, then there are exceptions. But not for outside projects. They can always find someone else, even though they try and put a guilt trip on you. Remember, your pitcher needs to be full and your soul needs renewing in order to be your best and to be able to be there for your family.
Live Your Own Life
No one can live your life but you. You need to realize that you can’t please everyone. You can only please yourself, which will make you a better person.
The next time you feel you must put others first, remember you need to think of you. Will this make you a better wife, mom, daughter, person?
Take your time, step by step, and make you a priority!
It’s a whole new world!
Many women are afraid that their life is over once the children leave or once they are no longer a wife.
But I am glad to tell you that is not the case. You are just now beginning your journey!
Most of us are from a different age where a woman’s place was to take care of her family. If you are like me, I went from being someone’s daughter to someone’s wife and mommy.
Today, women not only wear these hats, but also are CEOs, business owners, bloggers, professors, teachers, chefs, and more!
It is definitely a different world today! What a great place to begin your journey in this next part of your life.
You decide your own path!
The choice is yours. You can decide where your path will take you as you begin your journey.
Maybe you have skills you haven’t used for a while and would like to update them for today’s world. Or possibly it is time to reinvent you totally and go in a whole new direction!
There are so many choices you can make to begin your journey. Find something that you feel passionate about. Looking at the hobbies we talked about in a previous post, perhaps there is a hobby you can use as a springboard.
I love the scripture Philippians 1:6 which reminds us “Be patient, God isn’t finished with me yet.”
I was always told the old saying “Patience is a virtue.” Lol! It was a virtue I have yet to really attain. Although, goodness knows I try!
Just remember as you begin your journey, you are not a finished product. Welcome change, as hard as it might be to start. God does indeed have a plan for your life. Listen to your heart as you search for your new direction.
But I’m terrified I won’t make it!
Did any of you learn to swim by just being thrown into the pool or lake? Sometimes that is what we have to do with our life when we are too afraid to make that first step.
Plunge right in where you decide your journey should begin. If necessary, find a friend to give you encouragement as you start. I have found a wonderful friend who is a positive influence on me. She lets me bounce ideas off her all the time!
Even if your first idea doesn’t always work out, be creative and try again! Trust yourself and your instincts. You haven’t made it this far without having good instincts. Especially if you have raised a family!
I don’t have anywhere to start
If you are a mom, you have a lot of skills. More than what you might realize. Sit down and make a list of all the things you have done as a mom, all the hats you have worn. You will soon find that you have a list of skills you are good at and are comfortable doing.
Then sit down and list all the hobbies you enjoy. Or things you are passionate about. Maybe you have items on both lists that are the same or are similar. If so, this might be where you can find a starting point.
I think I have an idea now of where to begin.
The main thing to remember is to have fun! This is a new journey. Be patient with yourself as you traverse it. Trust your instincts. Realize this is not the destination. Life is not over. It is just a new season that has just begun. Realize it is okay to feel good about yourself as you begin the journey.
Thanks for being with me on this journey!
What is an Instant Pot?
An Instant Pot takes the place of several items in your kitchen! It makes life so much easier! Who couldn’t use that?
Do you have a pressure cooker, rice cooker, slow cooker, steamer, yogurt maker, egg boiler, oven for baking cakes all on your kitchen cabinet? Or at least somewhere in your kitchen taking up space?
With the Instant Pot, all of that can be decluttered! Your new Instant Pot can perform all of those functions for you!
Does it really work?
Yes! It works wonderfully! I can do so many things with it. When I first checked into an Instant Pot, I had no idea they were so versatile!
I kept seeing pins for them on Pinterest and hearing Instant Pot bandied about. At first, I had absolutely no clue what it was. The first thing that popped into my mind was, it must have something to do with Chinese food, as all I could think of was pot stickers.
My curiosity was piqued!
I started reading the recipes I found on the pins on Pinterest and thought the Instant Pot sounded great! So I decided to invest in one.
My Instant Pot was probably one of the best investments I have ever made! I have cooked with it every day since I have gotten it!
The first day I had it I made BBQ baby back ribs. Usually, it takes 2 1/2 to 3 hours at a low temperature to get them where they are falling off the bone. In the Instant Pot, you only have to cook them 35 minutes! I must tell you, I was totally skeptical about this cooking time!
I was amazed that it worked! I took them out of the Instant Pot, added some BBQ sauce, and then stuck them in the broiler about 5 minutes to give it a glaze. Delicious barely describes these ribs! They were trying to fall off the bone, even as I took them out of the Instant Pot!
Do you have to soak dried beans before you cook them in the Instant Pot?
This is another wonderful thing about the Instant Pot! No more soaking them before putting them on the stove to cook for a good while. Or no more waiting hours before you can eat like you do with your crock pot.
I just put dry kidney beans in my Instant Pot along with sausage, onions, bell pepper, spices, and water and set it for 40 minutes. How amazing is it that the beans came out nice and tender without soaking them!
I put a twist on the usual traditional New Year’s Day meal and had my Instant Pot red beans and sausage, turnip greens with Mexican cornbread, and fried okra. What a wonderful meal it was!
But can you really do other things with the Instant Pot?
Yes! You can get accessories to help you do so many great things with your Instant Pot! This steamer will not only steam vegetables to perfection but will also cook a meatloaf!
This jewel will even bake a cake! This cake pan for makes awesome cheesecakes!
The Instant Pot also cooks rice instead of having to use a rice cooker. You can actually cook a whole meal at one time! This saves so much time and energy. You just put everything you need for your meal in the Instant Pot, depending on what your recipe calls for. Then you set the timer and go do other things while your meal will be ready in a short time.
Instant Pots can also make yogurt! For those holiday parties what a treat it would be to have individual yogurt cups for your guests. Or serve a cake cooked in your Instant Pot instead of heating up your house on a hot summer day with the oven. The Instant Pot is sure to make your party a success!
Items I want for my Instant Pot!
There are more items I am wanting to purchase for my Instant Pot. One of my favorite cakes growing up was a lemon blueberry bundt cake. Imagine my delight when I saw this bundt cake pan for the Instant Pot! You know I want to get that!
My granddaughter does not eat cake, but she loves cupcakes! I found these silicone molds and am not sure if I could use them in my instant pot. I was thinking of putting them inside the springform pan.
If anyone has had any experience doing this, please let me know in the comment section below!
I hope you enjoy your Instant Pot as much as I am mine!
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