It doesn’t take much for a memory to imprint itself on a grandchild’s heart forever and holidays provide optimum opportunity. Festive lighting and yuletide melodies saturate the season and intensify memory indelibility. A grandparent’s involvement, which feels novel and somewhat storybook, adds to the occasion. 

As grandparents we have a unique sliver of time where we can thoughtfully and purposefully forge wonderful memories. 

In anticipation  of my 7 year old granddaughter’s visit I considered her personality. She loves

all things glittery and crafty. So I gathered some local pinecones and sprayed them with peppermint (this naturally cleanses them and gives them a minty fresh aroma). I also ordered spray-on snow so it was ready when she arrived for our little adventure.

On a sunny day we laid a plastic trash bag, flat, on the lawn with our ornament items upon it. We were about to make beautiful snowy pinecones decorations to hang on our Christmas tree. My granddaughter began spraying each cone with delight.  

The “process itself” became part of the memory. 

These wet cones needed drying time, so we hung them outside on nearby branches. Seeing them sway in the open air added to the anticipation. They looked whimsical. And as they glittered and glowed in the beaming sun light we could hardly wait to see them inside on our tree.

When morning arrived the following day, we raced outside to gather our snowy pinecones which were now dry. 

Each ornament was placed strategically on our Christmas tree at my granddaughter’s discretion. This was her time to express creativity. Allowing odd placement and bunching (without negative feedback) is important in shaping a good memory.

As  adults we can sometimes be stifling (even with good intentions). If it’s a matter of safety that’s one thing, but building a memory with gentle guidance on things that are harmless goes a long way. I always ask myself what is more important–the memory or the presentation? Plus, when our grandchild moves to the next activity, we can discretely reposition a few of the clusters. 

What a joy to nurture a life long memory. And now is the time while they are young. After all, their youth is only a sliver of time; here for a moment, and then its’ gone.

What are some of your plans with your grands this Holiday season?

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