A License to Spoil the Grandkids

How can grandparents indulge our grandkids without going overboard?

I recently became a grandparent for the first time. My family and friends have offered me warm congratulations, as well as the nearly unanimous advice to, as one of my coworkers put it, "Go forth and spoil." I’m happy to spoil my grandchildren, but as the editor of a personal finance magazine, I’m supposed to encourage fiscal restraint. And that responsibility weighs even more heavily because I’ve also devoted much of my career to teaching kids the value of money. I’ve written several books on the subject, and my Money-Smart Kids column appears regularly on Kiplinger.com.

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Janet Bodnar

Janet Bodnar is editor-at-large of Kiplinger's Personal Finance, a position she assumed after retiring as editor of the magazine after eight years at the helm. She is a nationally recognized expert on the subjects of women and money, children's and family finances, and financial literacy. She is the author of two books, Money Smart Women and Raising Money Smart Kids. As editor-at-large, she writes two popular columns for Kiplinger, "Money Smart Women" and "Living in Retirement." Bodnar is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University and is a member of its Board of Trustees. She received her master's degree from Columbia University, where she was also a Knight-Bagehot Fellow in Business and Economics Journalism.