Get Your Grandchild, Even Your Toddler and Preschool Grandchild, An iPad or iPad Mini For A Birthday Present or the Holidays With The Following Indispensible Accessories and Tips To Go With It

A dear, long (we never say old) friend called me to ask what she should get her granddaughter for her second birthday. The first words out of my mouth were to get her an iPad.

Now that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is on the side of us grandmas and have finally brought their electronics guidelines into line with reality, it will not take much to convince the parents of our grandchildren to let us buy an iPad for our grandchildren as the best present, because it is. See post.

Convincing grandpa may be another thing. Grandpa doesn’t realize that an iPad is the absolute best present to get the grandchild because it is actually a present for the grandparents. I would recommend showing grandpa the actual study and recommendations and let him read it and absorb it. Here is the link to the study and recommendations.

iPads and electronics are our grandchildren’s generational toy. Imagine FaceTime, seeing milestones as they happen, and the grandchild kissing grandma and grandpa on the screen not realizing the separation. Then, let grandpa consider the pure joy of having a baby or toddler immediately stop crying when handed the iPad, or being able to go anywhere, even the fanciest restaurant, with a baby or toddler, which we Boomers as parents could never do, because the iPad is the best distraction. Imagine a well behaved toddler who can sit for more than five minutes who you do not have to chase around in the restaurant. An iPad is pure joy for the grandchild and grandparent to play games and more together. It is the modern way and we Boomer grandparents want to be hip, phat, and whatever the newest term is for “with it.”

Now that you have convinced grandpa that the iPad is the best gift, let’s get on to getting the best at the best price. First, remember to honor the gatekeepers to our grandchildren:

GET THE PERMISSION OF BOTH OF THE PARENTS OF THE GRANDCHILDREN

Whether the parents of the grandchildren are a “team” or not, get the permission of both of the parents of the grandchildren before you spend this amount of money on your grandchild. This grandma suggests that you mention you would like to buy an iPad or iPad mini for the grandchild (see below) and that the parents discuss it first and let you know if they permit you to buy this gift for the grandchild. Show them the post about the American Academy of Pediatrics and new recommendations for electronics for children.

If the parents are not living together, the ground rule should be that the iPad and accessories travel with the child. Reread the post of being the best mother-in law. We grandmas do not take sides, only the grandchild’s side, as to never offend the gatekeepers to our grandchildren. With no grandparent rights, if God forbid, something happens to our child, we do not want to lose access to and a relationship with our grandchild because we have not honored and respected both parents of our grandchildren equally.

WHETHER TO GET AN IPAD OR AN IPAD MINI

This grandma immediately called the mother of her youngest grandchildren for her advice. After all, she is the expert of the iPad with two active sons who have played on iPads since they were babies. She recommended, for a toddler, or a baby, to get an iPad mini. She said that to a baby or a toddler the screen will look large. Also, being smaller, it is lighter and easier for the baby or toddler to hold. In addition, she said that the iPad is going to get dropped and flung across the room. The iPad mini, being smaller, is less likely to have a broken screen when dropped or flung. A large iPad is more likely to be dropped by small hands. So, apparently, according to my daughter, the expert, save the iPad for a bigger grandchild.

WHETHER TO GET A REFURBISHED MODEL OR A NEW MODEL

My daughter recommended getting a refurbished model for the toddler or baby for the same reason that it is more likely to be dropped, thrown across the room, and broken. Grandma will have less expense of replacing it if it is a refurbished model if the replacement cost is a concern. My daughter said she is not a fan of insurance for the iPad, but ask about it, and whether it really will cover what would be normal under the circumstances—possible destruction by a toddler. Apple sells refurbished models as well as new to comparison shop.

HOW MUCH MEMORY TO GET

Memory is a big deal to my daughter. The family of my youngest grandchildren is a very busy two working parent family. She said that with 64 gigabytes of RAM (do not ask me what that means, even looking it up on the internet made no sense to this Grandma, but it has something to do with the amount of memory the iPad will hold), the iPad will hold about 10 television shows (think Sesame Street) and two movies. Grandchildren will eventually get bored with content and new programs will need to be added or old replaced with new. Being very busy, it is better to have memory of 128 because you can hold double that on the iPad without having to delete anything. If the family is a busy family, it is more likely than not that shows and movies will be added and old ones will not be deleted. On the other hand, for a baby or toddler, they are not likely to be watching movies, and 64 is fine. However, if this is the only iPad in the family, the adults in the family may want to have movies and television shows and the highest memory can make this a family holiday gift. This grandma would let the parents of the grandchildren know that the baby or toddler should have first rights of access to the iPad.

My daughter said that different television shows use different amounts of memory, for example Dora takes less memory than Backyardigans. So, get the most memory you can afford. She said that the first iPad our toddler grandchildren got had 16 memory and was useless very quickly.

GET A CASE THAT IS AS INDESTRUCTIBLE AS POSSIBLE AND THAT IS NOT NECESSARILY THE MOST EXPENSIVE

Figure in the cost of an indestructible case, recognizing indestructible really means as indestructible as possible under the circumstances. There are special cases made for babies and toddlers use of electronics that make them nearly indestructible. If you’re going to pay money for an iPad you want to make sure it isn’t broken immediately. My daughter said the best isn’t necessarily most expensive. Her favorite is relatively inexpensive, about $20 on Amazon. Get the size for the size of the iPad or iPad mini. Her favorite is the HDE kids light weight shock proof handle case for iPad. Buy at Amazon:

Another case my daughter loves comes from Staples, a little more expensive, called the Shid-Air-blu iPad Air Gripcase shield case.

GET A GOOD SIZE ITUNES GIFT CARD WITH THE IPAD

Our daughter said that an iTunes gift card with the iPad is an indispensable accessory. She said that television shows and movies are very expensive to purchase for the iPad. One television show series could cost $20. She said that grandma should consider a good size iTunes gift card of at least $100 with the iPad. If not, the iPad is not going to be the kind of a gift that you want it to be as grandma. Grandma can always supplement with iTunes gift cards of $20 increments as visit presents when we visit the grandchild (For a visit present, I would still buy a small Sassy toy for a few dollars too—the baby or toddler does not understand that the iTunes gift card is not a teething toy).

GET AN INDESTRUCTIBLE EXTERNAL BATTERY CHARGER AND THAT IS NOT NECESSARILY THE MOST EXPENSIVE

Figure in the cost of an indestructible external battery charger, recognizing indestructible really means as indestructible as possible under the circumstances. My daughter said an external battery charger is an indispensable accessory as well. My daughter said the best isn’t necessarily most expensive. She said that an external battery charger that is the size of a lipstick is useless. She said that you need an external battery charger that is the size of a brick or half of a brick. Again, only buy an external battery charger that is surrounded by rubber. The battery charger will also get dropped and flung across the room by a small grandchild. You need a charger that is very large and capable of charging the iPad more than once. Her favorite is relatively reasonable in price on Amazon, about $40. My daughter’s favorite rubber outside shell external charger is the Mophie juice pack power station pro.

And why do we need an external battery charger? Babies and toddlers will use the iPad often. The parents of babies and toddlers will use the iPad often. Busy families forget to recharge electronics. As the family is walking out the door to go to dinner with grandma and grandpa, they will notice that the iPad is out of juice. We grandmas want them to have an external battery charger so that we can enjoy dinner at a restaurant without the iPad going dead. If the parents of our grandchildren are going to go on a long drive, flying in the airplane, running out of the house, they need a charger along with them at all times. The challenge becomes for the parents of the grandchildren to remember to charge the charger. Two external battery chargers included with the iPad are better than one, but that depends upon grandma’s budget and inclination.

So, here we have the absolute best gift for our grand child of any age for a birthday or the holidays. Yes, it is a luxury gift considering the monetary outlay. But it is also an amazing gift for the parents of the grandchildren, as well as the grandchildren. This Grandma tries to think of something for a gift for the grandchildren that the parents cannot afford on their own or cannot justify the expenditure as raising children is extraordinarily expensive.

If the grandchildren already have an iPad, consider the external charger as a gift. Consider the indestructible case as a gift. And, of course, think of an iTunes gift card as a continuing gift, whatever the denomination you want to give.

This grandma thought that apps were very important to let you know about as part of this blog post. My daughter, the expert, said apps are secondary. Apps for babies and toddlers will come as a separate post. They are your least expensive outlay.

Take a deep breath, get permission of the gatekeepers, and make an appointment with Apple. You may not be the hero in the family now, but you are sure to be the hero of the family this holiday season when you, the hippest grandma, introduce the iPad to your grandchildren with

Joy,

Mema

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