Grandparenting is sometimes being a substitute parent. For instance, when our son, Dan, and his wife, Julie, went on a trip, we took care of their three sons for several days.

Since the oldest is already a sophomore at the University of Hawai‘i and the younger two are still attending Mid-Pacific Institute, they can be home by themselves, so our responsibilities are quite limited. We begin grandparenting late in the afternoon, sometimes picking up the younger two boys after school or baseball practice.

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We also prepare dinner for them. The boys love their grandma’s cooking! She normally asks them what they would like to eat and without hesitation, they ask for their favorites — spaghetti, meatloaf, pork or chicken tofu, or her tasty chicken divan. They devour every dish to their heart’s content. During dinner, we talk about the boys’ schooling, baseball and other interests.

After dinner, Grandpa washes the dishes so that the boys can do their homework. Since it was the beginning of the school year, the younger boys said they needed to buy additional school supplies, so Grandpa drove them to a nearby Longs to get what they needed. When they got there, Grandpa got a basket for them and after they were finished getting what they needed, he told them to give him the basket. He got in the check-out line, paid and handed over one big sack of school supplies!

Grandparenting can be such an easy, throughly rewarding and simply delightful experience! n

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