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ďDad, I donít think you can do itĒ. Hum.....
Old 11-27-2018, 08:52 PM   #1
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ďDad, I donít think you can do itĒ. Hum.....

We just got back from just under 3 weeks of perfect weather vacation at our condo in Florida with our kids, grandkids, some nieces, sisters etc. Just the most fun vacation I think I have ever had. Sister and mom have condos 2 miles from ours.

Went to the beach, dinners outside, dinners poolside, shopping, wine, tennis, golf...just wonderful. Our grandkids who live behind us in Ohio, ages 2.5 and 4.5 absolutely love it down here. Our country club has an amazing lagoon style pool with waterfall, attached pool bar, snack bar, restaurant. So funny, we saw our grandson ...age 4 walk up to the pool snack bar and make an order. Later the girl came over to our cabana laughing and said...little Casanova put some chocolate chip cookies on your tab. Of course she saw me smile and give a thumbs up...she said he was so sweet and professional. She said to him...well sir, what is your account number? She said He smiled and said.....itís Paw Paw. She loved it. He also asked her if she would be his best friend and come to his birthday party in Ohio. He has an attraction to women in bikinis. Such fun memories we have made.

So here is my delima. Our daughter and son in law and our only 2 grandkids live behind us here in Ohio. We absolutely love our kids and grandkids. We are over all the time and so are they. We are truly a very close and loving family. I will walk over and hang out with the kids, go home and a few hours later I am wondering what the kids are doing and I pop back over. Of course the kids stop what they are doing..running to me...Paw Paw!!!!!

So, sitting poolside at another beautiful sunset with the kids having the time of their life in the pool, my daughter looks at me and smiles....so, you are retiring in 4 months. And next year you plan to come down here in January and stay till April? Really? You canít hardly go an hour without seeing the kids. How are you going to do it? And how are they going to handle it? They love you like crazy. Telling them their Paw Paw is going to be gone for 4 months .....hum......

Hum is right. I love these little kids so much. Hard to be without them. We are thinking of coming down early January bringing a car and leaving it. Then flying back in mid February for the little guys late February birthday, staying a few weeks, then flying back down. The fly back in mid April.

Anyone else in this situation. Iím sure after they are a bit older and in school it will no longer be an issue. But now in their formative years I just want to be with them.
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Old 11-27-2018, 10:11 PM   #2
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Flying has never been cheaper, but I still think it grand of you to make the effort to keep regular contact with the family.
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Old 11-28-2018, 12:10 AM   #3
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Be flexible! Do what feels right. When it feels right to fly back home, just do it. Stay in Florida and enjoy it, until you feel like it is time to leave.

The kids won't be little forever. Soon, they'll be off with friends and before you know it, they'll be away at college (really! 18 years goes by in a flash, believe me). So anyway, I suspect it's a temporary problem.
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Old 11-28-2018, 04:31 AM   #4
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We're in Florida for six months to claim residency. The last grandbaby fix trip was under $200 round trip on Allegiant. Do this as often as necessary to maintain marital and family harmony while enjoying Florida warmth during the worst of Midwest weather.
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Old 11-28-2018, 05:24 AM   #5
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Hum is right. I love these little kids so much. Hard to be without them. We are thinking of coming down early January bringing a car and leaving it. Then flying back in mid February for the little guys late February birthday, staying a few weeks, then flying back down. The fly back in mid April.

Anyone else in this situation. Iím sure after they are a bit older and in school it will no longer be an issue. But now in their formative years I just want to be with them.
There's only one way to know how it will work out.

Kids are flexible. They can accommodate to pretty much anything. So don't worry about that.

Give it a try and see how you like it. Don't commit to anything you can't undo.
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Old 11-28-2018, 06:02 AM   #6
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We try to be gone most of the summer but will fly back to see the grandgirls once or twice. Gotta get my pawpaw fix!
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Old 11-28-2018, 07:36 AM   #7
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You've established a good relationship with your grandkids and that won't change. My parents had wonderful ties to all their grandchildren even though they moved to Myrtle Beach, 3 hours away from the nearest of their children. There were many visits during the summer and other times when school was out and my parents also made it to every HS and college graduation for their 13 grandchildren. Even as adults, my nieces and nephews would visit my parents when they were in the area.

My own grandchildren at 3 hours away and I see them every couple of months or so. Trust me- they know who their Grandma is!
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Old 11-28-2018, 07:38 AM   #8
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One word: Skype.
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Old 11-28-2018, 07:51 AM   #9
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DW and are have been enjoying extended trips in our motorhome. But, when we were were out for nearly two months earlier this year, she couldnít wait to get back to see our grandbabies, ages 2 and 3, who live about 40 minutes from us. For future RV trips, I think we will use two months as an upper limit.
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Old 11-28-2018, 11:13 AM   #10
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This is the sweetest retirement problem.
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Old 11-28-2018, 12:04 PM   #11
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Hum is right. I love these little kids so much. Hard to be without them. We are thinking of coming down early January bringing a car and leaving it. Then flying back in mid February for the little guys late February birthday, staying a few weeks, then flying back down. The fly back in mid April.



Anyone else in this situation. Iím sure after they are a bit older and in school it will no longer be an issue. But now in their formative years I just want to be with them.


Good Plan. As you say they are more accessible before school starts. After that their schedule rules. Also good to use Skype, FaceTime etc to manage separation anxiety.
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Old 11-28-2018, 12:09 PM   #12
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FaceTime is very effective for us interacting with young nephews overseas. Even the 6 month old recognizes faces on the screen and interacts.
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Old 11-28-2018, 01:29 PM   #13
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One word: Skype.

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Old 11-28-2018, 01:49 PM   #14
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You have a wonderful problem :-)
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Old 11-28-2018, 05:04 PM   #15
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With all the discount airlines coming to Florida flying back for a grand child fix is easy .
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Old 11-28-2018, 05:23 PM   #16
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As much as I like living in nice weather myself most of the year, if you look at the research on happiness, family ties and social connections trump weather for long term happiness factors. The grandkids will only be that little once. Before too long they will be in school all day and eventually won't want to be seen with you at the mall, so maybe this is the time to make the grandkids the priority and shorten or breakup your Florida trips more.
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Old 11-28-2018, 07:00 PM   #17
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No one size fits all here. We still crop farm but when we sold our dairy herd we planned to leave the frozen tundra from Jan till at least the end of March. We were seriously hunting for a winter home. At that time we had zero grandkids. 8 years later we have a 7,6,5 and 2 year old.

Now we drive out West rent for a month and then return. Less then 5 weeks total. Time does fly and we have noticed the 7 and 6 year old are more independent all the time. They still love to see us, but do their own thing after a few minutes. Gone are the days when they cried when we left or held on to our legs so we would play a few more minutes. Those were some precious years and no weather was cold enough to keep us away.


OP settle in for the first winter and see how it goes. You'll soon find a balance that works for you and your GK.


I suspect the pendulum for us will swing towards longer winter trips in the next couple years as they get into more school and church activities.

Since we're sharing cute stories, our 4 year old GS was excitedly telling the pre-school teacher that Nana and Papa were waiting at his house. His almost 6 YO sister piped up and said, he likes Papa the most, but I love Nana more, but that's OK because then we both have one favorite. Mom chipped in and said "We just love people and don't measure it." OK said the 6 year old, but it's true.
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Old 11-29-2018, 07:14 AM   #18
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We had our children and grandchildren come to us in the winter(they were very willing) and the kids loved playing on the beach/shells/pool. They stayed about a week and our total stay is 3 months so they didn't miss us as much. This seemed to help us and the grandkids feel better about the separation. They are little for a short time, but it is the most precious time to us.

Good luck on this,

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