Here we are, mid December and the holiday scramble is on. We’re right in the thick of checking lists, getting gifts, searching high and low for exactly the right brand and size, surrounded by gift wrap, bags, bows… And after its all said and done, what do you end up with? A house full of clutter – more toys, doll clothes, noisy dinosaurs, iPhones/iPods/iPads and tiny Leggo pieces than anyone needs. It’s just all too much.
Consider alternatives that will simplify and bring back the true meaning of the holiday. Let’s face it, it is not about receiving gifts, it never was. Somehow, over time retailers, marketers and businesses have led us astray. How about we get back to the basics and help teach our kids different ways to celebrate and honor the holidays.
Here are some 7 tips to make your holiday more simplified and meaningful for you and your family:
1. A Gift of Giving. Make a donation in your child’s name to a cause they care about. If Susie loves seals, find an organization who’s mission it is to save and protect the seals. How about needy families in your community or place of worship, perhaps buying gifts for those in need would feel better than getting yet another set of Leggos?
2. A Gift of Service. Maybe as a family, you can together volunteer at a local food kitchen or pantry, to give of yourselves who need it more. What a way to celebrate the true spirit of the holiday.
3. A Gift of Time. Sometimes all a kid really wants is to feel special and have attention paid to them. Maybe as a parent, aunt, grandfather…you could give the child a Special Day Together where just the two of you do something fun. Take a hike, go sledding, make crafts, write a book or song together. It doesn’t need to be a big splashy expensive endeavor, just sharing time together dedicated especially to that child is invaluable.
4. A Gift of Memories. Find a unique box and fill it with family memories that can be a beautiful keepsake for the child. Maybe photos of great-grandad, their own birth announcement, a photo of the house they were born in, army medals from their dad, mom’s baby shoes,….etc. Sharing these memories, and the stories that go along with them, are worth their weight in gold.
5. A Gift of Experiences. To do, rather than to have. Those are the really special things. A gift certificate to go horseback riding, or to the Trampoline Park, or to the One Direction concert, even to a local hotel with an indoor pool for an overnight. There’s no clutter or stuff to clean up either!
6. A Handmade Gift. Such a lost art, the creativity of a hand crafted gift. It comes straight from the heart and can’t be found on any shelf in any retail store. Ideas could include a hand made bulletin board with pretty paper backing and unique push pins, or a one of a kind decorated head band, even a hand knitted scarf. The possibilities are endless. Create something truly special and see the appreciation when they receive it.
7. A Gift of Donation. Ask your child what they would be willing to donate, from what they already have, to someone less fortunate. Toys they no longer play with, coats and shoes that no longer fit, blankets that could keep someone else warm at night. We all have too much as it is, consider getting your kids involved in reducing what they have and making a difference in someone else’s life.
May you and your families have a simply memorable and beautiful holiday!
For more information on Simplify with Eileen and how I can help to simplify your life, please check out www.simplifywitheileen.com or call 781.589.5444 today!