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“The light in a child’s eyes is all it takes to make Christmas the most magical time of the year.”
– Unknown

Winter walkEvery year, when the Holidays roll around, I say to myself.. This year is my favorite year with our little ones. Their ages, their excitement, their overabundance of kindness.. it’s so special to witness this magical time of year through their eyes. As much as Holiday cheer is abundant this time of year, there are those in need and those who are struggling silently. Below are some ways to help gently spread a little love and Holiday cheer to those around you. Be sure to involve your littles, lead by example, and make new family memories by helping those in need.

  • Bake Christmas cookies for neighbors and friends.
  • Volunteer your time at a homeless shelter, nursing home, or animal shelter.
  • Organize a food drive with friends and family.
  • Sing Christmas carols to help spread the Holiday spirit.
  • Teach your littles the meaning of Christmas.
  • Give small gifts to those who provide services, such as your mail carrier, garbage man, house cleaner, and teachers.
  • Donate toys to Toys for Tots.
  • Host a family movie night with friends and family and watch a classic Christmas movie.

Depending on your family’s beliefs and background, the “reason for the season” may differ from your neighbor’s, but one thing is certain: This is the time of year to be extra grateful and to count your blessings. When your family visits a friend or attends a nice event, take a moment to have your littles see how fortunate they are to have such loving people and opportunities in their lives. Take turns around the dinner table and give everyone a chance to express gratitude for certain people or things they are thankful for. And remind your littles that not every little one around the world is as privileged and loved as they are. This is the perfect time of year to teach littles that it truly is better to give than to receive. These experiences will instill values in your littles and broaden their perspective on the true meaning of Christmas.

Remember to be in the moment and remain present. It is immensely easy to get caught up in the hoopla of the Holidays and forget to take a step back just to savor these special moments. Yes, there is a lot to be done, but remember to bask in the joy of the season and stay centered. Wishing you all a memorable, joyous, and festive Holiday Season!

– Jessica Smith, B.S.