The 12 Days of Christmas for Grandparents

Have fun with your grandchildren singing these new lyrics to one of everybody’s favorite holiday songs.

 ♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫

♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫♫

On the first day of Christmas, my grandkids gave to me . . . 

a million cartoons on DVD

 

On the second day of Christmas, my grandkids gave to me . . .

two dirty socks and

a million cartoons on DVD

 

And so on for days three through twelve . . .

three French fries

four appalling words

five bathtub rings

six laughing lizards

seven Play-Doh pizzas

eight stinky stinkbugs

nine pink piñatas

ten gargling goldfish

eleven giant gumballs

twelve dizzy ducklings

 

Whether it’s Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Chinese New Year or any of those other big days you reserve for your grandchildren, you’ll frequently spend them in the company of your son’s or daughter’s spouse’s relatives.

Keep telling yourself these people are in-laws, not outlaws, no matter how much you think they’re stealing precious moments that you might have spent with your grandkids or conspiring to make their family’s holiday rituals seem more festive than yours.

Given time, you might even come to like these complete strangers who are now part of your life forever. You’ll have plenty of opportunity to get to know each other better as you attend christenings, birthday parties, recitals, school pageants, Fourth of July bicycle parades, Easter egg hunts, quinceañeras, graduations and more. Try to keep an open mind because, really, these
people couldn’t be any weirder than your family.

In fact, this blending of families can be a growing experience for everybody when it brings in-laws of different cultures together. That’s when you find the Patels sharing Diwali sweets with the Donahues, or the Nguyens dancing the torah with the Steins. This spring the Garcias and the Changs plan to co-host a great big family picnic in the park, complete with posole stew and dumplings.

When both sides of the family are all smiles as they watch one-year-old Alyssa digging into her smash cake or six-year-old Ryan and his friends enjoying the bounce house and the clown, you have to wonder why countries the world over don’t employ grandkids as their diplomats.

These shared cutie pies might be the key to the one gift everybody wants most for the holidays: Peace on Earth.

 

Diana J. Ewing is the author of The Baby Boomers’ Guide to Grandparenting

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