Len's parents live close by. They're inside the beltway, and we're outside, so timing and traffic must always be considered, but they're near nonetheless.
When our family was young, Len's mom did most of our babysitting. (Yes, we're quite fortunate, and yes, I've always recognized that!) Now our sitters are usually homegrown, but the children still enjoy time with their grandparents.
Lauren and the boys attended different high schools, but both are closer to the grandparents than to us. Almost every week, Grammy picks up our teens, who then spend the night before being chauffeured back to school in the morning. The weekend call of, "What do you want for dinner?" is part of the ritual. Oh yes, Grammy loves to spoil cater to her grandchildren. ;-)
Now and then the younger ones get to go for "special time" at their grandparents' house. This morning I drove Rebecca in for her turn. I don't have the whole itinerary, but she has confided some of it to me: trips to the book store, the ice cream store, and maybe the park. Breakfast will inevitably include homemade waffle ice cream sandwiches. Really.
There's nothing like time spent together to build a bond. What a blessing.