Care Packages for Grandkids in the Coronavirus Quarantine
BY Shirley Hershey Showalter
What’s a Grandma to do?
When hugs are forbidden?
Stores are closed?
And she’s told “elders” like her must stay home?
Preparing Care Package #1 for Grandkids
She asks her friends on Facebook, of course.
“What can I do to stay connected when all I have are things around the house?” I asked.
You wouldn’t believe how many GREAT ideas other people had.
The most basic was to create a Sunshine Box.
Using my Grandma Stash in the library, intended for a
family vacation Spring Break in Orlando which, of course, we gave up due to Coronavirus,
I found the one new item I had in the house: a box of supplies for craft projects.
Then, to start Box #1 for little Lydia, I went through the multi-color construction paper pile
and found every single purple one.
Her favorite color.
In addition to the paper and the craft box, I found seven other items
I knew would delight Lydia’s heart.
She loves necklaces, bracelets, and all jewelry.
I found more of those items than I knew I had.
I also scrounged up little bags to make storage of the treasures as much fun as flaunting them.
I imagine Lydia traipsing through the house,
bejeweled and bedazzled
by her own spectacle.
What about the other grandchildren, the older ones, 7 and almost-9, who live in New Jersey?
Where to look to find something for them in Sunshine Box 2?
Back to my Facebook friend suggestions, where I found a delicious two-for-the-price-of-one idea.
A rubber band ball! Grandkids will love em!
First, you must know that I try to save and re-use any item of potential worth,
even when I don’t know what that worth is.
Those rubber bands on celery stalks, or the Sunday Washington Post, for example.
Did I throw them away for the last nine years?
Of course not!
That’s how the “junk drawer” came to be the junk drawer. All those rubber bands
snaking around with the old batteries, matches, and corn on the cob pricks.
The junk drawer before the quarantine. A decade-worth of lazy accumulation.
Off to the internet to learn what to do with those rubber bands:
Not only did I make a rubber ball while watching a good Netflix series.
but the junk drawer has been transformed!
No longer junk! Now it’s the kitchen office drawer. Even the pencils are sharpened.
And take a look at this!
The 3-inch rubber ball before it goes into the Care Package.
Remember Bobby Vee singing, “Rubber ball, you come bouncing back to me”?
I hope they find his 1960’s hit on the Chromebook
they are using for their distance learning classes.
I only scratched the surface of all the good grandkid ideas out there. What can you add?
Also: Do you have a junk drawer?
Are you “tidying up?”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Shirley Hershey Showalter is a writer and speaker living in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. She is writing a book about grandparenting with author Marilyn McEntyre.
Her career was primarily spent in higher education (professor, then president of Goshen College in Indiana). From higher education, she moved to the foundation world as an executive at the Fetzer Institute, Kalamazoo, Michigan. She is the author of Blush: A Mennonite Girl Meets the Glittering World.