grandparentsWhen you think about what you’ll do in your Florida retirement, things like golf, swimming, tennis, taking classes and socializing likely come to mind – and Lake Ashton offers an abundance of such opportunities. In addition, we’d like to introduce an idea you may not have considered: babysitting.

A recent study showed that babysitting once a week has a positive effect on women’s cognitive health. It’s a great way to stay active, keep in touch with younger generations, and even make a little money.

A fact of Florida retirement is that you may be living hundreds, if not thousands, of miles from your own grandchildren. And children living in the areas surrounding Lake Ashton may also be separated by distance from their own grandparents.  Babysitting youngsters of similar age to your own grandkids will help you stay connected with the interests of children that age so you are  better able to relate to your own grandkids when you see them. At the same time, the children in your care will benefit from your life experiences and wisdom.

If you find the idea of babysitting appealing but you’re still not sure, consider volunteering in your church’s nursery or at a nearby preschool. When you do decide to start babysitting, be sure to establish clear parameters up front, including issues like whether or not you’re going to be paid, and if so, when and how (at the end of each time you babysit or on another schedule; and in cash, check or an in-kind service) and the “house rules” the kids are expected to follow. Most important: Play with the kids and have fun.