Celebrate Grandma with a Ya-Yas Party

As blended families are on the rise, increasingly the parents of the bride or groom find themselves become grandparents overnight. Whether related by birth or marriage, grandparents still want to spoil their grandkids, but preparing for multiple little ones arriving in one’s life at once can be difficult, especially for grandparents also helping to plan their child’s wedding. Hosting an “Instant Grandma Shower” for a friend or loved one in this very situation can be a heart-warming surprise to really help them out. Recently, a group of friends shared their story about hosting an Instant Grandma Shower for their friend, Cris.

Jacquie, Sarah, Sherrill, Stacy, Shelley, Carrie, and Cris play together as a tennis team, but are inseparable off the court too. The group was dubbed “the Ya-Yas,” by one of their daughters because their close-knit friendships, lively antics, and giggle fits are reminiscent of the women’s relationships in the bestselling novel Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood. The group includes women of different careers, faiths, and ages, but they spend their summers together by the pool laughing, trading books, and confiding in one another about family, husbands, and the ups and downs of life. When summer ends, they meet at least once a week for tennis and cocktails after, keeping their bonds strong.

This year, Cris’s daughter, Emily, married a man who already had three children, ages three, five, and eight. Though Cris had raised her daughter and a son, she at that point didn’t have any grandkids yet, so after the wedding she would instantly have three grand-kids to love all at once. She spent most of the summer preparing for the wedding, which was largely a DIY event. She assembled favors, helped plan the food, and even grew all the flowers for the wedding by herself. Meanwhile, she also ran her own wallpaper business. To say her hands were full is an understatement.

After seeing how busy and stressed Cris was, the Ya-Yas sprang into action and put together a secret Instant Grandma Shower. After tennis one

night, they surprised Cris with a “Three Little Monkeys” theme, as Cris was gaining three grandkids. For the t

heme, the Ya-Yas used ShindigZ Monkey Party Deluxe Kit-N-Kaboodle for tableware and decorations. They even ordered a cake with the three little monkeys design on it. For gifts, the group put together an assortment of supplies a grandmother needs, ranging from chalks, crayons, and other art supplies, to books, puzzles, and movies to keep the kids entertained. Now, when the three little monkeys come to visit, Cris is prepared.

It meant a lot that her friends thought not only of the stress involved in planning a wedding, but also of the unexpected joy of gaining older grandchildren. Helping her prepare for the kids in addition to supporting her through wedding planning showed how much they cared. You can also host an Instant Grandmother Shower.

Since the Instant Grandparent Shower is a new tradition, there’s tons of ways you can style it. Choose a traditional baby shower theme for younger kids and a classic look, or for a fun spin like the Ya-Yas took, choose a theme featuring a youthful character, such as Elmo party supplies. Keep the event simple, as the new grandparent is likely also busy with wedding showers, planning, and other events. The party should be a time for you to show support and have some de-stressing fun. For shower gifts, make sure friends bring a range of items and toys that are suitable to the grand-kids’ ages. Craft kits, games, and movies are especially fun ideas as they provide a way for the grandkids to interact with their new family members.

If you have grand-kids, share your favorite activities for grand-kids or crafts for grandparents and grand-kids to do together. Instant grandparents will appreciate the help with ideas on how to bond with a special child who’s just arrived in their life.

Are you an Instant Grandparent? What are some activities or ideas that helped you bond with your new grandchildren?

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