"Mom, Dad, we have news for you - we are going to have a new baby!"
I know, because I have just recently heard them myself. As a grandparent of two increasingly independent eight year olds, I have been missing the look and softness of a newborn, that delicious milky smell, the tiny hand curled tightly around my finger,the crying ...Oops lets not get carried away here, time to give the baby back to the parents!
But I am getting ahead of myself...the grandbaby is not even here yet.
How can we as grandparents help our children get ready?
First, let me remind you of the "Golden Rule" of grandparenting - you will hear it again and again on this site!
Never give advice that has not been asked for.
Having said that, there are two baby books which my daughter says she could not have survived without. They are:
When you are tempted to run out and buy all the sweet little things that a new baby needs, don't overdo it. Let the new parents have the fun of choosing. On the other hand, they may be quite happy to browse the Internet with you, looking at the "big ticket" items, where maybe Gran or Gramps might help out.
Possibly the best gift you could give your new grandbaby is a good car seat.
Be sure to check the seat for compliance with safety regulations, ease of installation, how easy it is to adjust the straps to the size of the baby, and of course comfort for the baby. The seats suggested below come highly recommended by parents who have used them.
Of course, all you talented Grans who knit and crochet, you are in your element. Just remember that when Mom is exhausted caring for the new babe, she may not want to bother with hand-washing, so choose wool that can be machine-washed if possible.
If there is going to be a shower, the grandparents do not usually have to organize it, but you may be asked for a list of people to invite. You can also help out with addressing the invitations and thank you cards.
As her delivery date comes closer, Gran can help by baby sitting any older children while Mom goes for her check-ups, and of course, be ready to stand by and take the kids when Mom's time comes, so that Dad can be there for the delivery.
In the last couple of weeks of pregnancy and the first few days after baby comes home, some home-made pre-cooked frozen meals would be appreciated unless Dad loves to cook.