Archive for the ‘Christmas’ Tag

What are we teaching our kids…. Graciousness or Entitlement?   1 comment

Now that Christmas is over and a New Year has begun… I think it is a good time to ask “What are we teaching our kids about giving and receiving?”

When it came to your kids  requests this year, was it: Thoughtful Requests or Wretched Excess?

Are we teaching them to be gracious in both the giving and receiving of gifts or is there a sense of entitlement? Graciousness is an often overlooked value in this day and time. With the economy such that it is one would think that a paring down of excessive gift-giving would have occurred. But did it? Did you honor your kids request for an elaborate gift on their list and prehaps cut corners somewhere else? I realize that the sad shape of the economy cannot be fully understood by the youngest members of the household but let’s face it, it does affect everyone. The realities of less money, job loss, inflation and rising costs weighs heavily on each of us… especially at Christmas time! If the effects of the economy crunch put a kibosh on many of our “would-be” purchases… maybe that is a good thing.

So my solution, in simplified terms is to teach our children, at any age, to think carefully and thoughtfully about their requested list next year and in years to follow. And after they receive a gift, teach them to be gracious and write a thank you note or letter for the gift. This can be something as simple as an email but a handwritten note is nice as the note itself becomes a “gift” to the giver.

In years past, I have seen lists are scattered with items ranging from expensive “smart phones”, iPods, iPads, designer bags, and expensive gaming systems to outrageous requests for cars for which even a college graduate cannot qualify. Ask yourself…..What are we teaching our kids when we provide for them these luxury items at such a young age?

In future posts I will offer suggestions of opportunities to give back through volunteerism. Stay tuned!

Food for though! I would love to hear your comments…..

 

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Teach your children the true meaning of Christmas!   4 comments

I know time is short and Christmas is almost here…. but it’s not to late to have a discussion about the TRUE meaning of Christmas with the kids of all ages in your home. It’s really not about the fancy gifts that we give and receive. It’s not about the latest toy that has been plastered on every TV screen out there. It’s not even about the tree or the meal that you will share….It’s about giving back! I have been pondering how to present this information for a few days when I came across a Parent.com article on just this very subject. It takes you through a variety of ideas that viewers wrote in about. Some of the most memorable to me were helping serve in a local soup kitchen and mailing treats to the armed forces. Whatever you decide to do this holiday season to celebrate Christmas, please consider adding a meaningful conversation about giving back. This is especially important with young children who are bombarded with all the images of STUFF! Please help them get outside themselves! They will thank you when they are big enough to know how and why it really matters to do so!

This Christmas is different for many as the economy has not been very kind in 2010. I feel your pain…believe me. That is why our family has decided to scale back this year. We are limiting gifts and focusing on what really matters…. Jesus’ Birthday and giving back. With that in mind we joined with another family and decided to “adopt” a young 14 year old girl and her mother. We collectively made them our focus this year. It was very heartwarming to see the recipient of our gifts open them and cry as she knew that they came from a true place of giving. She would have otherwise had NO Christmas! I am moved even now thinking about her face and what those meager gifts meant to her. No doubt she and her mother felt the true meaning of Christmas. It is about selflessness and generosity. It is about love and sharing. It is a about Jesus.

I recommend that each of you search your hearts and find a way to be a blessing to someone out there who would not otherwise have a Christmas… maybe a soup kitchen, a home for the elderly or a shut-in neighbor. Each of us have the ability to affect someone’s life in a positive way…no matter how small or inexpensive. You never know what it will mean to someone! The double benefit will be that the children in your life will see generousity in action and truly know the meaning of Christmas!

Merry Christmas to you and yours. May the peace of Christmas stay in your heart all year long.

Here’s the link to the article I have referenced.

http://www.parents.com/holiday/christmas/gifts/holiday-craft-projects-give-back/

Posted December 22, 2010 by dsgnmom in Uncategorized

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