We could all use a vacation, and if you’re looking to bond with your grandkids, a trip might be the perfect answer. It’s fun for you, and getting away from Mom and Dad for a while is thrilling for any kid. But before you board a plane to Italy with your granddaughter or rent an RV for a trip to Yellowstone with your grandsons, there are a few things you need to check off your to-do list. DON’T LET THE PARENTS WORRY Letting their kids go on a trip without them can be nerve-wracking for parents. Don’t view parental worries as an implication that you are an irresponsible grandparent. Instead, think about how you felt when your own children were young, and take steps to alleviate the parents’ concerns. If your daughter asks you not to be on your phone while in crowded public places because she’s concerned you might lose sight of her child, promise to keep the phone in your pocket. If your son-in-law wants regular updates, make time before bed for your grandchild to call home and tell her father about all the fun she’s having. A little compromise can lead to less stress and more fun for everyone. PACK NECESSARY DOCUMENTS You need to have some form of ID for your grandkids. Older kids can use a driver’s license, but if you’re traveling with little ones, find a copy of their birth certificates. You also need copies of insurance and prescription cards and a TRAVELING WITH THE GRANDKIDS? 3 Things to Do Before the Trip
notarized letter from the parents granting you permission to authorize medical care in case of an emergency. It’s also a good idea to have a letter of permission for your grandkids to travel with you. Make sure the letter is signed by all legal guardians, especially if your grandchild’s parents are divorced. You don’t want to accidentally cause a custody dispute. PLAN A TRIP YOU’LL BOTH LOVE When planning your itinerary, ask yourself if your grandkids will have fun, too. You might be excited to visit an art museum, but a younger child might not appreciate it as much. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t visit museums or historical sites! In fact, most of these places offer kid-centric activities, like scavenger hunts, that can help a younger audience engage with the environment. Just be sure to think of your grandchild first when planning. There’s nothing like the adventure of travel to bring generations closer together and create lasting memories. These tips will help you ensure those memories are good ones. Happy travels!
SPOTLIGHT ON DAVID STIMAC
just say, ‘You should use a castle trust.’ Every suggestion had a reason behind it, and the team answered all of our questions.” David received a detailed snapshot of estate planning and elder law from our team, but he knows more than we ever could about taking pictures of his own. He is a professional photographer with a focus on nature and avian life. His work has been featured in magazines like Ducks Unlimited and Delta Waterfowl. He occasionally travels for work, but the majority of the incredible images he’s been able to capture are from right here in Michigan. The photos accompanying this article are David’s. To see more of his work, go to davidstimac.com. And if you need the same personalized care that Richard Stimac and his family received, be sure to give us a call. A World-Class Photographer and Son
When David Stimac’s father, Richard, needed to create an estate plan, he turned to the team at The Elder Care Firm. “He attended a few of Chris’ seminars and found them to be very informative,” David recalls. “It also provided a great introduction to the estate planning process.” Once Richard was ready to tackle the planning of his own estate, he decided to involve his children in the process. As a result of this collaboration between generations, David played an active role in the process, interacting with The Elder Care Firm team regularly. “To be totally honest, I didn’t know the first thing about estate planning,” David notes. “I mean, I knew what a trust was, but that was about it. Chris and his team did a great job explaining my dad’s options to us. They never pressured us into anything. They genuinely care about doing right by their clients. For example, they didn’t
2 • www.MichiganEstatePlanning.com
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