Dear Grandparenting: Hip, hip hooray! The wife and I are on cloud nine since the arrival since the arrival of our first grandchild three months ago.
His name is David, and he is doing well. And as you might expect, we spend more of our days helping our son and daughter-in-law with care and feeding.
Being at their house so often, I’ve found the amazing collection of expensive baby stuff they bought. As my son is the first to admit, they have no extra money what with college loans, car loans and house payments, etc., but still spend on the child like there’s no tomorrow.
This stuff is not necessary! They bought a $400 bassinet and a crib that cost three times that. Their stroller cost more than my first car, and they bought an organic cleaning kit to make sure it’s always in mint condition.
I’m just getting started. They bought three pairs of the smallest leather baby shoes probably ever made. Bet they cost $20 per square inch and the child never wears them. They got something to teach the baby French, which neither parent speaks. They bought enough clothes for 10 babies. I saved the best for last, the breastfeeding bra my son fills with warm milk, slips on and let’s the child go at it. They got bottles shaped like breasts too. When does this madness stop? Houston White, Battle Creek, Michigan
Dear Houston: There’s no big mystery here, just another display of the nesting instinct in full bloom.
First babies usually give new parents cause for high anxiety, who in turn search heaven and earth to obtain everything a newborn needs, sometimes in triplicate.
The more stressed the new parents are, the more likely they will spend to buy some peace of mind. That unisex nursing bra indicates someone’s in a state of near panic.
We’d be remiss not to include grandparents in this discussion. Traumatized parents can fritter away the cash, while grandparents ante up for the essentials. Nearly 50% pitch in for educational expenses and 25% for dental and medical care, while nearly 40% help parents pay for everyday living expenses.
Grand remark of the week
Red Davis from Kingsport, Tennessee likes to leave his grandchildren with “something to think about. I tell them that someday they’ll be a memory to everyone they met in life. Try to make that memory a good one.”
Dee and Tom, married more than 50 years, have eight grandchildren. Together with Key, they welcome questions, suggestions and Grand Remarks of the Week. Send to P.O. Box 27454, Towson, MD, 21285. Call 410-963-4426.