The FamilyMatters! Resource Team hit the ground and interviewed the “grandparent-in-the-street” to find out what it means when children and grandchildren spend time with them.

Meet the Grandparents

Each grandparent was asked to share a little bit about themselves and what they enjoyed most about having grandchildren. Grandparents also shared a precious memory of their grandchildren as well as their heartfelt wishes for the future.

Ngo Poh Choo

Ngo Poh Choo, 56, is paternal grandmother to toddler twins, Zhu Kai and Zhu En (age 2). Poh Choo works as a cleaning lady in an office. Her hobbies include calligraphy and taichi.

Poh Choo says that “It’s very fun to play with Zhu Kai and Zhu En. We sing songs that they learn from the CD and watch television together. The home is full of life and buzzing with activity. I also like it that my son, Soon Ann, gets off the computer to spend time together with the family.

Two years ago, I was happy to hear that my daughter-in-law, Violet, was expecting twins. And, I was even happier to know that the twins would be a boy and a girl! As a grandmother, I am simply happy to see that my grandchildren are healthy. When they were born, the girl was ok, but the boy had to go into the Neonatal ICU for a while because he couldn’t take milk on his own. It was hard to see him having tubes out of him during that period.

I wish for Zhu Kai and Zhu En to grow up strong and well. (快高长大)”

Lee Man Chew

Lee Man Chew, 69, is maternal grandfather to Gabrielle (6) and Alexa (4), as well as paternal grandfather to two children of the same age. Man Chew is a retired Cement-Mixer / Truck Driver. His hobby is surfing the Internet.

Man Chew shares his thoughts and says “I am happy when they spend time with me. My wife and I stay with our daughter Hwei Min and son-in-law, Calvin. Our granddaughters, Gabrielle and Alexa, like to make believe that they are teachers and we are their students.

Man Chew remembers the births of his grandchildren and the hope he felt for their future: “I was happy to see the arrival of a new generation in the family.”

Man Chew wishes that all his grandchildren will learn to “Be hardworking and learn more, so that life will not be so difficult.”

Thia Siew Moey 

Thia Siew Moey, 68, is paternal grandmother to Issabella (6) and Ivabella (4), maternal grandmother to Asher (11 months). Siew Moey is a homemaker and a retired tutor. Her hobbies are folk dancing and qigong. 

“ My heart is filled with warmth. I am content doing everyday things with my grandchildren such as playing with them or giving them something to eat. It’s precious when they begin to trust you and rely on you. As Issabella and Ivabella grow, they have become more able to express what they think and feel. I am extra touched when they say, “I miss you NaiNai.”

Whether it was for my daughter-in-law, Michelle or daughter, Shirley, I was filled with anticipation and concern for the mother’s safety, as they went into labour. I was filled with joy to meet my grandchildren. One can say that a grandparent’s joy does not pale to that of a parent.

My son, Dave, his wife Michelle, and their daughters Issabella and Ivabella, stayed with my husband and I until they moved to their own place one year ago. I get along well with Michelle. And, the girls are close to us as we lived together for many years. They are simply adorable – they are excited to visit us, and start calling out for us, announcing their arrival way before reaching the front door.”

Siew Moey says that “I wish for my grandchildren to grow up with peace and joy. (平平安安,快快乐乐)”

Au Yong Siew Fah

Au Yong Siew Fah, 63, is maternal grandfather to Phoebe (3). Siew Fah is a Company Director. His hobbies include music and philately.

Siew Fah shares: “I am delighted when my children and granddaughter make it a point to spend time together. My wife, Yin Kheng, and I, have three children, and are maternal grandparents to Phoebe. She’s the little girl of my eldest daughter, Hoi Yan and son-in-law, Mike. I particularly enjoy having meals together as a family.  I remember the time when Phoebe began to walk on her own.”

Siew Fah wishes that his grandchildren will “Be prepared for any eventualities. Honesty and hard work are always the best policy.

Adapted from an article first published on 4 Nov 2014 on the FamilyMatters! Facebook.