Blog Archives


April 29, 2019

We recently talked to a “grandpa” who gave us some new ideas about treasure boxes.  Each time he visits his grandchildren he takes along a “treasure box”.  (Between visits he refills the treasure box.)  What goes into his box?….mementos from the past.  During each visit he tells the story behind his mementos.  Sometimes he lets each grandchild choose a memento to keep.  Sometimes he hides things in the mementos for a surprise.

I always recommend that grandparents have a treasure box or treasure drawer.  It should be kept filled with things that are precious as well as things that are “junk”.  When you have a moment with your grandchildren, either in person or via technology, the treasure box gives you an option of pulling something out and talking about it.  What is it?  What is it made of?  What shapes/colors do you see?  Where did it come from?  Does it have personal meaning?  What could/should we do with it?  Too often we don’t interact because we don’t have anything to talk or think about.  Having a filled treasure box around helps fill that need.

The “TREASURE BOX” in Grandma’s book is used a bit differently.  It is filled with things that once were lost, but now are found.  The story takes place in a school classroom, so it makes a great “thank you” present for a teacher.  It can also be used as a springboard for a discussion on taking better care of your “stuff”.  You can find “Treasure Box” here:


April 15, 2019

When our kids were little, Daddy brought home a HUGE cardboard box from work. It was about 4’X6’, about 1” thick, and the bottom edge was reinforced with wood slats. It had protected something really big and heavy. We weren’t very creative with it. A little folding and duct-taping of the top and a bit of cutting on the sides and we had a really neat playhouse. The kids helped us paint it and it lasted a whole season of backyard neighborhood play. I’m sharing this memory because our neighbors recently asked if we had any big boxes. They have since made a rocket ship for their son to enjoy. What a creative treat!

For younger kids, your creative work will provide hours of creative play. For older kids, being challenged to make something out of boxes can provide hours of creative thought and practice working together. Older kids can also be challenged to share their creation/s with younger kids. It is not that long before you will need a great summer project, so begin saving and asking for boxes now. You can usually fold them flat until needed.

Make a plan for family visits

April 1, 2019

Sharing responsibilities is good for leadership, character, and skill development.  We recently spent a long time with our whole family together.  This wasn’t a brief vacation but was a much longer transition situation.  During this time we could have spoiled some of us while overworking others.  Instead, we organized our days so that we each participated.  The form we used is below.  Most days it worked well and the kids were eager to take on their chosen responsibilities.  Your list may look different than this one.  Ours changes too because of time and place situations.

Yes, vacations and together times should include some “spoiling” for each of us.  But, take the time and forethought to build more teamwork with those around you.

Family Activities Chart

Grandma’s latest book highlights how a family with young children can organize and share their day together.  You can find “Two-zle Day” here: