Blink—And They're Grown

Parents, Families and Child Care

A Time for ‘Thanks-Giving’

In the blink of an eye the holidays are here again, and the hustle and bustle begins! What is on your list to do this week?  Bake a pie?  Roast a turkey?  Travel out of town?  Visit family and friends?

Well, whatever is on your list, I am hoping that you will find the time for Thanks-Giving.  Time to truly be thankful for your blessings, your challenges, your hopes and your failures,  for it is all of those things that set our path and make us who we are: for ourselves and for our children.  As parents, there is often so much to be thankful for, things that we may pass or miss as we hustle and bustle about.  Somewhere in the midst of the busy-ness, try to slow down, be present in the moment and…

•    listen to your child’s chatter, really listen
•    soothe your child’s worries and frustrations
•    watch your child delve into the desserts
•    hold or hug your child a couple of times throughout the day
•    and lastly, make a memory

One of my favorite things now is to share memories with my brothers and sister.  Holidays seem to always be a part of those conversations.  We talk about how my dad and uncles always fell asleep on the floor after dinner, my aunt getting us kids to play “cemetery” at the end of the night (a game where all the kids had to lay still on the ground and not move – little did we know the trick was that half of us would fall asleep) or the time my cousin asked my brother to “pass the butter” to which my brother said, “Did you say pass?” as he launched the butter like a football to the other end of the table.  My list goes on and on.

As a kid, I always loved the holidays and the time I got to spend with our large extended family.  I remember as a kid having fun, but I think it is as an adult that I began to feel grateful for those times and those memories.  And it is interesting, but the memories that mean the most – the ones I focus on – really were not about money or “things.”  They were about the people I was with, the things we did and the things that made us laugh. And I am guessing that you have a list of memories as well… and I am hopeful that you have the kinds of memories you want to keep versus those that you would rather forget.

And so, for this Thanks-Giving, what are the memories you want to help create for your child?  What are the traditions you will do each year as a family?  What activities will you intentionally involve your child in?  What will you do similar to last year, or differently?  And if you do have regrets about last year’s holidays, learn from them and let it go!  None of us can go back, so move on to this year, who you want to be to your child – be that person and create the memories you choose to create.

So, what is on your list to do this week?  Bake a pie?  Roast a turkey?  Travel out of town?  Find time to be grateful?  Make a memory?

Photo copyright © 2007 sean dreilinger

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