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The 10 Commandments All First-Class Grandmothers Should Live By

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Whether you’re a new grandma or an experienced grandmother with decades under her belt, there are certain rules to live by to ensure your bond with your grandkids stays strong.

Commandment one.

Thou shall not put one grandchild above any other grandchild, in favor, gifts, deeds, or attention.

Commandment two.

Thou shall not make for yourself a collection of images taken from the Facebook account, online photo-sharing service, or — heaven forbid — a physical photo album belonging to the parents of the grandchild without asking first.

Commandment three.

Thou shall not take the name of the grandchild’s parents in vain for the manner in which they’re feeding, disciplining, spoiling, raising your grandchild(ren). At least not in front of the children.  

Commandment four.

Remember the Sabbath Day or whatever day may immediately follow a visit with the grandkids. Use it wisely to rest up, for you will surely need to recover from the energy depletion resulting from the constant attention, crafting, joking, cooking, and uncommon physical activity required — and fully enjoyed — while in the presence of a grandson or granddaughter.  

Commandment five.

Honor the father and mother of your grandchildren for in most cases, they really are trying their hardest to do right by the children.  

Commandment six.

Thou shall not murder the dietary and bedtime guidelines set forth by the grandchild’s parents. At least not often. And only when chocolate or a request for just one more bedtime story is involved.  

Commandment seven.

Thou shall not commit adult-like expressions that demean the grandchild, no matter how challenging the child may be. Especially at an overdue bedtime — for the child or the grandma. Or during shopping excursions. Or when the little one won’t eat a special something you cooked up just for him or her, snarling and refusing to take even one single nibble because it’s too brown or too red or touching the food next to it.  

Commandment eight.

Thou shall not steal all the time with the grandchild — especially a newborn — from other family members simply because you want to continue loving, touching and squeezing the little one, for others do, too. Volunteer, instead, to change the most stinkily soiled of diapers—something others refuse to do—then take your time doing it. 

Commandment nine.

Thou shall not bear false witness against the dog to keep a grandchild from getting in trouble for attempting to dig to China in the front yard or eating the last of the cookies from Mom’s cookie jar.

Commandment 10.

Thou shall not covet the time the other grandma has with your grandchildren, even if it’s far more than the time you are allotted. For regarding the moments grandmas and grandchildren share, the quality of the time not the quantity will be most memorably held in the hearts of the grandchildren—and the grandmother.

This essay originally appeared on GrandmasBriefs.com. and was written by Lisa Carpenter, a baby boomer, grandparent, parent to adult children, wife, and writer. Follow her on Facebook.

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