Notes on Parenting

Insights for parenting babies, toddlers, teens, and young adults.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Changing the Focus of Our Families this Holiday Season

By Brooke

This truly is the most wonderful time of the year. I love the focus on service and gratitude and the potential to teach these things to our children. I never think it lasts long enough, but it’s important to take advantage of all the opportunities we have to serve.

Helping our children focus on something more than the gifts they hope to receive can be a challenge… it can seem downright impossible. We are bombarded with commercial after commercial advertising the latest gadgets, toys, and clothes.

How do you counteract that and change the focus from ‘to: me’ to “from: me’?

Providing our children with plenty of opportunities to serve and planning activities as a family to serve is a way to continually help our children stay grounded amidst all the crazy consumerism. It can be easier than you think.

Sometimes our drawback is that we don’t know who needs help or how best to give it. A little time browsing the internet, phone book, or even just looking around your community will provide you with all you need to know.

Some basic ideas for serving with your family can include:

-         Local food bank
-         United Way
-         Local Shelter or soup kitchen
-         Retirement home
-         Children’s hospital
-         Serving your neighbors
-         Serving in your families (as seen in this post here)

For a longer list of ideas including websites download this Google Doc:

What does your family do to serve? Do you notice a change in your children’s focus when you do serve?

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