When it comes to Christmas and kids, are you a super-elf-parent trying to fit in everything? What does make Christmas magical for kids? In a really popular article over the summer Bunmi Laditan declared she was done being super-wizard: “I’m Done Making My Kid’s Childhood Magical.” She’d had it with themed birthdays, elaborate crafts, and contrived memories and instead remembered the simple things that had made childhood magical for her. Some of those same points are relevant for a magical child’s Christmas.
The holiday season can be special for kids because the family has fun together. If you think back to your childhood, are there some great memories of fun times? And did they involve family? The particular event or reason is much less important than having fun with the family. It could be as simple as sharing hot chocolate or popcorn together after running errands. It could be watching a parade all snuggled under a blanket on the sofa or doing a puzzle. Or perhaps, a mini-adventure or a car trip to visit family and friends in another location. In the letter below, Christmas is: spending time with your family, drinking hot chocolate with marshmallows, eating gingerbread cookies, and having fun.
Of course, at this time of year there are some events especially for families, such as free times at the swimming pool or skating rink. Some communities will have hands-on activities such as decorating gingerbread houses or making crafts at a local museum, store, center, or shopping mall. This will vary from year to year, depending on your children’s ages and interests, and even if they don’t remember the details, they will remember the feelings. That’s at the heart of Christmas.
Some of the most magical times for kids may not be play but work. Children love to help other members of the family. Hanging Christmas lights may not be your idea of fun, but it could be a highlight for kids.So could baking cookies for a neighbor. These are time for kids to connect with the significant adults in their lives, and, later on, these connections are often what gives us the strength to deal with challenges, make changes in our own lives, and persevere through difficult times. We share both joy and tears with our friends and family.
Calendars are more than busy during the holidays, but hopefully there will be some time to play and work and have fun together. Whatever it is that your family will be doing, will you be able to have some magical time for fun together?