There’s no time like the holidays to teach and share with your children the magic of the holiday season that comes with small acts of love and kindness. Experience inner peace and happiness that can last now and forever with a few simple activities.
Here’s how to enjoy the magic of the holiday season:
Give to charity.
While many children this time of year look forward to receiving lots of presents and enjoying hearty holiday meals, less fortunate families may struggle to make ends meet. Participate in food drives by helping to sort items or by donating food. Take your child to pick out a toy for another child and have her drop it in a toy bin. Remind your child and yourself, too, to be thankful not just for “things” but for unconditional family love and support.
Watch old movies.
Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman, and of course, A Christmas Story are all fun, entertaining movies that can help the entire family get psyched for the holidays. Savor the spirit of the season by cuddling together on the couch with a cup of hot cocoa and your favorite movie classic.
Nostalgia is normal this time of year, remembering and missing loved ones who have passed and realizing how fast time goes by. Share your treasured memories with your children. They’ll appreciate you letting them in on your past, telling them about your grandparents, for example, and how you enjoyed the holidays together when you were a child. Look through old photos or watch home movies. Let them gain greater insight into your history and their own.
Create new memories.
Holiday traditions are great. Family gatherings, lights, holiday cards—all something to look forward to as the winter months and holiday season approaches. Consider starting a new tradition, too. It can be anything from reading a special book each year to posing for an annual photo in front of your fireplace to taking a trip to the mountains for a skiing adventure and ringing in the New Year in a winter wonderland.
Discuss the significance of the holidays with your children.
Remind your children that the holidays are not just about presents. Paint them a picture of your ideal holiday season and ask them to tell you what makes this time of year special to them. If you practice a particular religion, teach your child what the holiday means from that perspective. Discuss how you can work together to make this holiday season one you all can enjoy together and special for others, too.
Make holiday treats.
Making chocolates or cookies is a simple, quick yet fun activity. Find the mold—Christmas trees, snowmen, dreidels, etc.—that represents something special to your family. Decorate sugar cookies. Enjoy homemade holiday treats with your loved ones.
Enjoy the fresh winter air.
Bundle up and take a walk through a quaint village where many of the stores are decorated for the season. Stroll around your own neighborhood to see how your neighbors show their holiday spirit with intricate lighting and outside decor. It’s beautiful and even more special when you can experience it as a family.
Watch your children as they sleep.
There’s nothing more peaceful than a sleeping child, wrapped in her blanket and dreaming peacefully. Look at your children as a major accomplishment for you and your partner. Recognize your children for their achievements, too. Be proud of a job well done.
Make this holiday season a magical one for your family by appreciating together the pleasures it brings. Listen to holiday music and sing along. Smile and laugh. Take pictures. Get dressed up for a party even if it’s just for you and your children. Take time to relax by yourself, with your partner and as a family for no magic lasts longer than that which you create together.