Several years ago, Mr. Right built our coffee table. She is a beauty. It is square with two generous drawers. One for display and one drawer to hide goodies in. It is topped with a thick, substantial, beautiful beveled piece of glass.
You can tell when the Grands come to visit. Mr. Right removes the piece of glass and in its place inserts a piece of wood painted as a chalkboard. It is BRILLIANT. We put out the chalk and the kids get to create and draw whatever pleases them. On occasion, the parents join in and draw as well.
While creativity is wonderful, the main reason we switch from glass to chalkboard is so that the Grandparents don’t ever have to say, NO.
Please don’t beat your toys on the glass. Please don’t scrap your cars across the glass. Please don’t put stickers on the glass. You get the idea. Also, their parents aren’t jumpy and nervous. Everyone can get behind the idea of a chalkboard.
Wait for it, this year, another BRILLIANT idea to share………. a successful idea these Grandparents came up with.
The parents of our grandsons try to avoid giving the kids sugar. So that means after they finish their dinner, this Granny doesn’t have glorious desserts baked and ready to shower her grands with. I did not bake chocolate chip cookies or make Rice Krispie squares, no lollipops, and so forth.
After dinner when they are clean plate club members…… I had nothing to give them!
So, I invented the Dessert Basket! After each dinner, if you have used good manners, eaten most of your meal (or not, I’m the granny, I make the rules about the dessert basket)……. You get to choose one item from the basket.
I bought an inexpensive plastic, colorful basket. I filled it with Hot Wheels cars, and finger puppets, mini dinosaurs, plastic sharks, squeezie bathtub toys, stickers, eyeballs, paddle and ball toy, and more. Nothing was wrapped, everything in plain sight. The little person who was done with dinner got to choose a dessert. Once chosen, the basket went out of sight until the next day.
One day, while bike riding, the four-year-old asked me, “what do you think I should choose from the dessert basket tonight?”
Um, I think I love this idea.
- Parents are happy. no sugar. check.
2. Grandparents are thrilled to give goodies to their grands. check.
3. The grands seem to like the idea. check
The only downside? When the basket is empty, the glass is back in the coffee table ………….that means the little people have gone home.
Guess I need to get busy and start refilling the dessert basket for next time.
In this together, friends,