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Making holiday memories with the grandkids

Many of us who grew up with grandparents have special memories of activities, routines and traditions that have made a lasting impression on us.

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The holidays are often a time for families and friends to get together, reconnect, enjoy each other’s company and reflect on many good memories.

For grandparents, it is an especially important opportunity to spend time with their grandkids and create cherished memories. Many of us who grew up with grandparents have special memories of activities, routines and traditions that have made a lasting impression on us.

Here are a few suggestions of things to do with grandkids during the holidays:

  • Have the grandchildren ask family members for their favorite holiday foods and create a family holiday cookbook.

  • Teach the younger family members to how make their favorite dishes by involving them in the cooking process.

  • Take grandchildren shopping for gifts to give others. It will help them learn that holidays are also about giving gifts, not just receiving gifts.

  • Have a holiday pajama party. All generations can wear their holiday PJs, eat popcorn and enjoy favorite holiday movies together.

  • Do something your family never has done together before. Go ice fishing, take a painting class or enjoy a treasure hunt. If it turns out to be a fun time, make it an annual tradition.

  • Take the family on a tour of the neighborhood to see the holiday light displays or consider volunteering to collect toys or warm winter blankets and coats, or put together holiday gift baskets for needy families.

  • Reach out to older neighbors who won’t have family celebrations and include them in yours. Younger family members will make new friends and memories, and learn about the spirit of the season.

Grandparents have many activities they can enjoy with grandchildren, but remember, you don’t have to do every tradition every year. The main goal is to have fun and create memories.
As your grandkids get older, you can ask them what things they would like to add to the holiday festivities. By enjoying some family traditions and creating new ones, your grandkids will remember and look forward to these special times year after year.


For more information about making memories with grandchildren, visit for the “Making Memories for Grandchildren” publication.

Christina Rittenbach, Stutsman County Extension agent, can be contacted at (701) 252-9030 or

Related Topics: FAMILY
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