If you don't know these things, you will learn... fast!
If you are a grandchild of mine, this is what you're in for. Over time, a few rules have evolved and developed at my house, to keep us all smiling and liking each other.
These rules are in strict force when kids turn up in bunches of three or more.
Rules at Nan's:
Say hello and announce yourself. It is rude not to. I could be doing something somewhere and don't want to get a fright. Yell out when you leave too, so I don't have to organise a search party for you.
Please and thank-you's will get you things a lot easier than demanding or sulking.
I like a kiss and cuddle when you get here and when you leave, but if you don't want to, that's ok.
Eat when meals are ready because this ain't a restaurant; the kitchen is not open when you feel like it.
Help yourself to easy snacks in fridge, fruit and crackers.
Use one glass/tumbler each while you're here. Rinse it out between drinks if you like. Drinks in kitchen/dining room only.
Half a cup of juice at a time. Much as you like. Can't be wasting my juice.
You know where the goodies are... they are mine to dole out. The chocolate in the fridge is mine.
Pick up your rubbish. I don't feel like bending down to pick up any but my own.
Everyone is as important as everyone else – just because the baby is a baby, this doesn't mean they don't matter as much.
Disagree, but don't bully or pick on each other where I can see/hear it. If you are not fair to someone, I might decide not to be fair also.
Bite me and I'll bite you back.
You're allowed to be angry, sad etc, but you're not allowed to take it out on others.
If you have an accident, tell me quick, so I can clean it up quick and no one will know. (Not even your Mum hehe).
Just like you, I have my special toys (my art gear). I won't wreck yours if you don't wreck mine.
You can do the tantrum thing, but do it outside. Yell, scream, cry, squeal, thrash and jump/stamp about all you want outside. I really don't want to miss out on everyone else who is visiting. Come back in when you've finished.
Sulking is like the tantrum thing – it's best done outside.
If you get told off, you are still my darling... adults tell each other off too. I tell Grandad off and he tells me off sometimes... true story. I have told your Mum/Dad off and they have told me off. Also, kid naughty is different to adult naughty. Adult naughty is normally a lot worse than kid naughty. So don't think I don't/won't like you.
I am your friend you know – you can tell me things if you want to.
Your Mum and Dad might be here, but I am the boss of my house.
These things came about because at some point, children think that because their parent/s are about, they can do as they please. They will get that treat because they stamp or cry. Or they can go tip out all the liquids in Nan's fridge and other miscellaneous annoying things.
Aside from keeping my place peaceable and operational, here's what I hope the grandkids get from it and what I hope sticks with them when they are out and about anywhere else.
Other peoples' homes
The people in them
Being mindful of others
Knowing your cousins
Knowing your family
It is important to me that the time they spend here is pleasurable... these things help make it so.
When my daughter started daycare, I spent a lot of time trying to find the right fit for her and our family. I did a lot of research and asked a lot of questions. Over and over again though, the answer to my question would come back the same, "she'll be fine."
I want hours upon hours of delicious sleep followed by hot cups of tea, reading my book and nothingness. But I'll have to get up now to comfort, feed, clean, dress, entertain, love, laugh, play, and repeat.
I just want to add that I love your reasons for having these rules. I am aiming to teach my son and any subsequent children how to be a decent human being. These are good guidelines for achieving that. Particularly the driving point of thinking about how our actions affect others.