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Friday, March 15, 2013

Plan An Easy "Grand" Kids Sleep Over

I LOVE being a Grandma and I LOVE spending time with my "Grand" Kids.  So with Spring break upon us I seized the opportunity to schedule a sleep over with my four oldest.  It went very smoothly and the Kids had "a blast."  With a little preparation and past trial and error, our 24 hour "sleep over" was truly "quality time" together.

This is what they brought and this is what I recommend: 

Stuff - A lot of Stuff!
  1. Sleeping bags and pillows
  2. Pajamas, slippers, and robes
  3. Change of clothing
  4. Pillow Pets or favorite night time friend
  5. Dream lights (They each have one and they're really cute.  The lights make designs around the room and they can change colors.  They were purchased from Borders).
  6. Toothbrushes and toothpaste
  7. Combs and/or hair brushes
  8. Outdoor clothing (Their snowpants, jackets, hats, mittens, and boots are not on this photo because they were already drying in the basement after playing outside).
This is what I had on hand:
  1. Favorite foods and snacks  (I made Rice Krispie Treats with rainbow sprinkles.  I also bought pizza, yogurt and strawberries, Mac and Cheese, salami and cucumbers, VFusion, ice cream, and of course, popcorn).  For breakfast we had French Toast,  flavored oatmeal and cereal. 
  2. Batteries, all sizes.  We've needed them on more than one "sleep over," usually for the dream lights.  It truly prevents tears.
  3. Arts and crafts supplies
  4. Movie videos
  5. Extra hats and mittens for when they're wet or misplaced
  6. Needle and thread for repairing broken zippers, clothing, and/or night time friends
  7. Non spill drink bottles for bedside water during the night
This is what we did:
  1. We dug a fort in the snow and took a short walk.
  2. We made a video (The kids interviewed each other and they danced and sang).  The kids LOVE replaying it - lots of giggles and laughs, and I have a wonderful keepsake!
  3. We colored Easter eggs.
  4. We watched two videos in the evening.  Each "Grand" kid picked a favorite and then we drew names for the ones to watch.  NOTE:  This works so well for us.  It prevents a lot of unnecessary discussion.  We also drew names for who sleeps where.
  5. We made crafts

My "Grand" Kids enjoy beading so I always have some on hand.  We also made extras to take home for younger brothers and sisters.  NOTE:  If you don't have beads and lace on hand, no problem.  String and old buttons work too!

We made Grandma rocks - no pun intended :)  We used permanent marker on some rocks I bought from the Dollar Store.  The Kids drew faces and designs on one side and I had them put their names and ages on the back.  When weather allows, I plan to spray them with acrylic to preserve their works of art, another wonderful keepsake!  When we do this again, I will be better prepared and have a variety of colorful markers on hand.

Even though I kept my "Grand" Kids busy (it helps prevent boredom and phone calls home to Mom and Dad) they also had enough unstructured play to keep our "sleep over" fun.  But just in case, I had a backup activity in mind - dot art.   We had our Bingo markers and plenty of white paper ready to go! If you plan ahead, you can purchase dot art sets from Toys R Us and other stores where they sell kids crafts.

TIP:  Have Moms and Dads call in the evening to say goodnight and always give your "Grand" Kids the option to go home if they choose (no matter what time it is). This rarely happens but it's good to have parents on "standby" to avoid traumatizing Kids who are not quite ready to be separated from Mom and Dad overnight. 

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