Sponsor a Shopping Spree
Deborah E. Thomas, author of The Bramble Thicket, suggests creating a shopping spree in your home where children can use play money to buy gifts for the other members of the family and their friends. Stock the store with soap, bandages, tooth brushes, candles, pens, notepads, hair bows, toy cars, and so on. Then let them wrap their purchases (with a little help from you). The joy of giving is a wonderful feeling!
Dr. Martin Eichelberger, CEO of the National SAFE KIDS Campaign, a national organization dedicated solely to the prevention of unintentional childhood injury, reminds parents to be careful during the holidays. "It's easy to become caught up in the excitement of holiday decorating and overlook potential hazards of decorations," he says. "Whether you're putting up a Christmas tree or lighting the Hanukkah menorah, or Kwanzaa candles in the Kinara, taking simple precautions can help make your holidays more joyful and safe."
- Never leave candles unattended, and turn off tree lights when you go to bed or leave the house.
- Keep common baking ingredients such as vanilla and almond extract out of reach as they contain high levels of alcohol.
- Never leave your child unattended in the kitchen.
- Keep round, hard foods and candies such as candy cane pieces, mints, nuts, and popcorn out of reach of young children as these items could cause choking.
Focus on Your Family
Most importantly, limit your holiday activities and reduce the stress. Remember that holidays are for children, too. Make sure you bring your littlest ones into the spirit of the occasion and enjoy their wonder at the season's joys.