21 November 2018, by Jeremy Ratnam
It’s finally here!
The yearend school holidays can only mean one thing for me and my wife…
We now get to have that much needed rest and wake up at 8:30am instead of 5.30am to start the routine weekday grind. A crucial 3 hours more of shut eye (which I’ll take any given day).
The school holidays also means mummy and daddy can finally go on a much needed, little later than usual, couple date night.
But with us going on a date night, who will be spending time with our four kids?
Quite a number of times, my parents have come to our rescue, especially if I had to be at an event where the invite states, ‘You and Your Partner are cordially invited to…’
The first person I’d call or text, would be my mum, (whom the kids know as Nana), and who is already 75 this year, and still ever-ready to look after Nicole, Kevin, Junior and Danielle.
I’ll make arrangements with my mum, my wife drops the kids off at my parents’ place, I’ll meet my wife at our “secret” location and the date night begins.
However, little is known, that when Jamie and I have our little rendezvous, the kids have continual treats from my parents.
My mum will always whip up a feast for the kids, from late lunch, tea-time treats, dinner and maybe a snack before we arrive to take them home. And that’s when we find, many times, the #RatnamKiDS are seen comfortably asleep when we return, knowing that they’ve been in tender loving care.
My dad, “papa”, as the kids refer to him, now 78 years old, always dazzles them with his magic tricks, or he tries to test them in their spelling, nursery rhymes or with anything educational.
However, it’s not all treats 24/7 – because when the kids have homework, they bring it over to their house. There have been occasions when my mum will guide them along, together with my niece, Sonia-Marie who sometimes drops by to help the kids out in their mother-tongue.
Despite being ‘out of action’, we still stay in touch with the children because Nicole, the eldest (11), is contactable via her mobile phone.
Yes, you could imagine the joy on her face as soon as we said, “OK! I think it’s time you had a mobile of your own”.
With a mobile in hand, she plays the “class monitor” role, duly informing my wife via text if something has gone wrong, or something is amiss.
TOYS & STUFF
I would recommend to parents who leave their children at their grandparents; to make sure they bring along their kid’s favourite stuff – from toys to hobby material, to even books for leisure reading.
We have noticed that leaving #RatnamKiDS on their own, at their grandparents’ can also sometimes let their imagination run wild. That‘s possibly because they are in a different environment with my parents.
On a few occasions, the children will act out a scene with their toys and Nicole records a video of the entire play. Hmm… makings of an art director or a movie producer? You never know.
ALWAYS @ THE GRANDPARENTS’
My wife and I know that my parents are the right role models to look after our kids, because each time we tell the children that we are heading to “nana and papa’s” house, they go extremely wild!
Yes, the kids know the treats and more that they’ll be in for.
We don’t usually bother my parents too much… on average, we leave the kids at my parents, around twice or three times a month, weekdays included.
I sometimes get text messages from my parents asking when the children will swing by again, as they miss them a lot.
I’m appreciative my parents are always there for our kids whenever necessary. Not only do they provide the grandkids with joyful memories but they also teach them valuable life lessons and remind them to be good to one another.
It only leaves me and my wife to say, “thank you mummy and daddy, aka Nana and Papa! Happy Grandparents’ Day!”