13 things you only know if your Nana is your second mum


by Emma Dodds |
Published on

Happy Mother's Day to all Grandmas everywhere!

For those of us who are lucky enough to still have our Nannas with us and are close with them, we can often feel slightly torn on Mother's Day.

Of course, no-one could EVER replace your own goddess of a mum – they're pretty much our heroes, right?

However, we often take our nans for granted. And it's only when they're ill or someone else's nan passes away that we really take stock and appreciate them.

So for all the grandmas who had more of a hand in our upbringing than most nans, here's to you. We love you!

Princess Mia's grandmother in The Princess Diaries reminded us of our own nans. Well, a bit, anyway... (Credit: Disney) ©Disney

1) You have TWO people to tell good news to

As soon as you find out you've got a new job, or you won the lottery – or you finally got a stain out that's been bugging you for days – who do you call? Yep, your mum. And whilst most people might put their phones away after that, we go straight back to the call list and recount the entire story word for word to our nans.

2) She's your constant cheerleader

And as soon as you tell her your super-exciting news (that might not be super-exciting to most), you know that whatever you're telling her, she'll think it's the best thing in the entire WORLD. Whilst our actual mums have a bit more of an opinion and tend to challenge us on our choices – as they should do – you know that whatever you say or do, she'll support it 100% and you can do no wrong in your dear old grandma's eyes.

3) When you fall out with your actual mum, you still have another mum to comfort you

One of the worst people to get into a fight with is your mum. Normally, if you fall out with a friend or partner, your mum is the one you go to. But who do strokes your hair and lets you cry into their nice clothes when it's your mum you're at loggerheads with? For us, we go straight round to Nanna's house and she tells us it'll all be ok. If we're lucky, there'll be Bourbons in the biccie tin, too.

Mark Wright was famously close with his grandma, Nanny Pat, who became a national treasure (Credit: Instagram/ Mark Wright) ©Instagram/ Mark Wright

4) Speaking of biscuits...

Of course, Northern Grandmas may differ slightly from Southern Nannas. But it's an unwritten, universal rule that ALL grandparents – whether they're from Grimsby or Essex – have a biscuit tin in the kitchen. And it's also rule that it's chocca with the best biccies the UK has to offer. When else would you eat an orange-flavoured Club?

5) They're the most comforting person in times of crisis

We know that no-one can make you feel good like your mum can, but her role is more to "pick you up and dust you off" – but your Grandma welcomes you in, with your soggy face and sniffly nose, the kettles already on because she's psychic and knew you were coming and you can just slump into her lovely warm arms. And she always smells SO GOOD. Eau de Nan.

6) You have twice the amount of family recipes to be passed down

Now, we're generalising here by saying that mums are all excellent cooks. Shout out to all the dads who are the main chefs of the house! But even though your mum (and/or dad) could teach you everything they know about food, you've got an extra brain to give you a helping hand. Nans always have excellent kitchen tips, and have even more recipes to pass down to you, making you a culinary genius.

Catherine Tate's nan isn't quite as similar... (Credit: BBC) ©BBC

7) Need something sewing? Get Nan on the phone

If you're not au fait with the art of sewing but your favourite skirt's got a hole in, who you gonna call? Your mam? She's too busy, sorry. NOW what. You don't want to pay to get it fixed... But never fear – Nanna is here. She's NEVER too busy for a spot of sewing – and even has time to teach you how to do it yourself for the future.

8) ...Or ironing

Is it a written rule that as soon as a woman becomes a grandmother, they automatically LOVE ironing? Or is it just that ladies of that generation love it? I once asked my Nanna why she loves ironing so much, and she said: "I just find it so therapeutic!" - if you say so, Nanna... Whenever you visit your nan or she comes to you, she'll ALWAYS ask if anything needs ironing. Which suits you down to the ground.

9) There's no fight for the TV remote

Whenever you're sharing a telly with your own mum, she'll either always some sort of comment about what you're watching OR she'll already be watching something terrible. But when you go round your nan's, there's no fighting whatsoever. You are Queen of the Changer/Zapper/Control. You can literally watch whatever you want on her TV and she won't mind.

Kris Jenner is a VERY glam gran (Credit: Getty Images) ©Getty Images

10) You have twice the amount of experience to ask for advice

Your mum is the absolute don at advice-giving. Even at the times when you didn't ask for it... But it's always valued and useful, whether you like to admit it or not. However, it's always good to get a second opinion to compare and contrast with. You've already asked your friends and you're still not sure. Asking your grandma will always be an excellent idea as she's rich with experience. She may give you another perspective that you hadn't considered, and because she's from a different generation to you and your mum, it'll be extra helpful.

11) You can both learn from each other

You can ring your Grandma up at half 8 in the evening and ask her what the washing symbols mean on the top you want to wear tomorrow and she won't bat an eyelid. Next time you go round, she asks you how to set her phone to loud because she can't hear it when she's left it upstairs. It's a mutually beneficial relationship.

The Royle Family's Nana was an absolute gem (Credit: ITV) ©ITV

12) Nans give the best presents

It's a truth universally acknowledged that every Nan up and down the country is a professional and consummate gift-giver. Whether it's birthdays, Christmas, you passed your driving test, you give birth – they know exactly what you want. It's a gift in itself.

13) They were the first port of call when you were a child

Mum's got a work emergency? Drop the kids at Nanna's. Dad's on his own for the weekend but needs to nip to B&Q and do some non-kid-friendly housework? Let's take you to Nanna's for a couple of hours. And you never minded because EVERYTHING is fun and great and amazing at Nanna's house. You loved seeing her and you know she absolutely loved you going round too. And this hasn't changed as you've grown up, either. The smile on her face when she sees it's you at the door is one of the most heart-warming sights.

Thank you, Nanas! ❤️

My Nanna, my sister and me (Credit: Chloe Dodds) ©Chloe Dodds

Do you see your Nan as your second mum? Is there anything we've missed off the list? Send us your photos of you with your Gran to feature in this article! Let us know over on Facebook and Twitter.

Like this? Now read these:

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Mother’s Day after miscarriage or stillbirth: Advice on how to cope and grieve

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