Ask Grandma: “My Grandkids Don’t Appreciate Handmade Gifts”

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Dear Devoted Grandma,

I love crafting, and every holiday season, I pour my heart and soul into making handmade gifts for my grandchildren. However, last year I noticed that they were less than enthused about my creations. Should I just cave in and buy them the latest gadgets they seem to prefer?

Sincerely, Jean from Ohio

Dear Jean,

This is a question that tugs at the heartstrings of any grandma who has ever spent hours knitting a scarf, baking cookies, or lovingly assembling a scrapbook, only to see it received with a lackluster ‘thanks.’ You’re far from alone, and the dilemma is as old as the hills but wrapped up in new, tech-savvy packaging.

First, let’s unpack the underlying issue. It’s not really about the hand-knitted sweaters or the meticulously crafted picture frames. It’s about feeling valued and appreciated by your grandchildren. When they don’t respond with the level of enthusiasm you’re hoping for, it can feel like a rejection—not just of the gift but of the love and effort behind it.

But before we jump to any conclusions, let’s consider the world from their viewpoint for a moment. We’re living in an age that’s moving at a rapid pace, especially when it comes to technology and trends. For young people, this often means valuing what’s current and socially popular. This isn’t an indictment of your gifts but rather a reflection of how they interact with the world around them.

That said, the magic lies in finding a middle ground. How about involving them in the crafting process? Instead of surprising them, ask them to pick a project they’re excited about and make it together. It will still have the personal touch you cherish, coupled with their youthful enthusiasm.

Another approach is to blend the old with the new. Have you considered crafting something that complements their current interests? For example, if they’re into gaming, how about a hand-stitched cover for their gaming console? If they’re music lovers, perhaps a set of personalized, hand-painted earbuds?

Whatever you choose, the most important thing is to communicate. Don’t just assume that your hard work isn’t appreciated; ask them what they’d like and involve them in the process. The end product may be a compromise, but the journey will be a bonding experience filled with love, learning, and mutual respect.

You’re not just crafting gifts, Jean; you’re crafting memories and teaching life lessons along the way. And that’s something no store-bought gift can match.

Wishing you many happy crafting hours and even happier grandchildren,

Devoted Grandma


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