I don’t know about you, but right about Halloween, when the Thanksgiving and Christmas displays started materializing in stores all over town, I started to get anxious thinking about all that begged to be done to get ready for the holidays. As our calendar started to fill up I had to remind myself to be sure to include my children in all of the preparations and festivities. There are many things that they are eager to do and they are more than capable of doing them. Let’s not forget to schedule some family fun in there too! Here are a few ways that you can include your children this holiday season.
- Let them help out in the kitchen. Do you make Christmas cookies every year? Why not make it tradition to make them with your children? Even better, have a baking party and invite a few friends over! Make some hot cocoa, put on some holiday music and have a great time together with family and friends. Don’t forget to “test” the final product (wink wink).
- Let them make/buy and wrap gifts. There is so much emphasis put on what children want to receive… don’t forget to let them be givers too. Whether store bought or handmade, it’s important to let our children go through the process of stepping outside of themselves and thinking about giving gifts to others. Help younger ones create a simple craft as a gift. Maybe an older child has allowance money saved that they can spend on a gift for someone they love. Let them wrap gifts for the other people in the family too. Bring out the best papers, ribbons, and bows and let them have fun being creative. One of my favorite ways to wrap gifts is by creating custom paper with holiday themed rubber stamps. Basic white, red, or brown craft paper is a great background for this and kids love to make their own paper.
- Serve somewhere as a family. Help out at a local family shelter or visit shut-ins at the nursing home. Bring a little bit of Christmas cheer to someone in need and let your children see that they can make a difference this holiday season. Children are naturally inclined to help others, but I fear we don’t give them ample opportunity to stretch those “muscles”. This is the perfect time to do that as a family.
- Get some families together and go Christmas caroling. I’m pretty sure that most kids love to sing and holiday songs and carols are the most fun when sung with others. Kids love to sing and they love visiting friends. This is a great way to get your kids involved in spreading some holiday cheer!