Some years ago we lived in a multi-family home with our daughter, her husband and their three children. We had this living arrangement for about 10 years. One of the grandkids could easily work their circuitous way to our side of the house without going outside.
Our grandkids would frequently want to visit our “side” of the house. They would first work their way through their garage, then the shared laundry room, into our garage to the door into our apartment. The living arrangement was perfect, with separate living arrangements and complete privacy.
Some evenings, there would be a knock on the door (they were not allowed to walk in without knocking) and one of the kids would say, “Grammy, do you have any Scotch tape?”
“Sure, in the drawer next to the kitchen sink. Do you want something to eat?”
“Poppy, do you have a cover for the report? By the way, could you read it and make it better?”
“The covers are in the middle drawer of the desk. What’s your report about?”
The ongoing joke was our grandkids think we were a well-stocked CVS drugstore! And we could meet all of their needs. I then realized I stumbled onto a great idea. Have a lot of reasons to have your family (grandkids) and even friend knocking on your door looking for something. It’s cheaper than the real CVS, and it forces them to spend some time with you.
Here are some suggestions to stock your shelves like a CVS store.
1. Stock frozen pizza, ready to heat up and serve at a moment’s notice.
2. Learn to hem trousers, fix faulty seams and remove stains.
3. Buy a stapler and have a supply of staples.
4. Have an array of paper clips, book covers, tape, glue, craft paints, glue gun.
5. Have a supply of Tums for upset stomachs.
6. Have some reading material to pass onto them.
7. Learn how to search the Internet to help with homework.
8. Always have something sweet to serve.
9. Have a top of the line computer they cannot resist using.
The list is not exhaustive. But hopefully you get my point. Be creative and select items that fit your circumstances.
Remember the most important shelf item is you. Encourage their visits, their sharing, and try to determine their needs beyond the obvious paper clip.