There is so much uproar over Michael Jackson's will. We've made similar choices so I get it.
Like MJ, our money goes to our kids. That money is for their college education and to ensure they are not financial burdens on their guardians. We named an independent executor who is not in line to care for the children. Everything I've read says that is the way to go. Keep the money and the kids separate - didn't you watch the movie 'Glass House'? We picked a primary and a backup who are good at managing their own finances and who will not cause stress for the guardians over the money.
J's parents are healthy, mobile and more than capable to care for our children. They have a special bond with both kids, so the emotional challenges of parenting our children would be lessened. They could afford the role without undue hardship. Religious values/beliefs are the same as ours. And, they did a mighty fine job raising their 3 kids.
Because we used to travel with J's parents a lot, it was necessary to have a backup. We asked Papa Martian and his lovely wife, Mrs R to be the godparents. While not family, they lived in the same city as J's family, which meant they would be near to J's siblings and the kids cousins. They were of similar religious beliefs. Their daughters were poised and well-behaved. Financially, our kids would not have been a strain.
Why not Widney Woman's family? Although very strong, healthy, and active, my parents are the age of J's grandparents. My 3 siblings were single and very busy with their careers. Because they live in Canada, they didn't see the kids weekly from birth, like J's family and Papa Martian and it would have meant uprooting the kids from everything and everyone they knew.
Things have changed. We have moved to a different state. J's little sister is married now to a man who wants 7 children. We don't travel with J's parents as often. It's time to re-evaluate.
Death and taxes are guaranteed. You have to plan for both, regardless of how annoying and depressing it can be.