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Fun to do this season – chain of kindness

December 5, 2010 Leave a comment
A Danish Christmas tree illuminated with burni...

Image via Wikipedia

Given the materialism associated with the holidays, I am always kind of struggling during this time as how to give more meaning to the season in fun but not expensive ways.  So I thought I would share one in case anyone else is in the same boat.

A couple of years ago I read about the tradition of the good deed paper chain in The Book of Family Traditions.  The book suggests hanging a paper chain up with links for each member of the family. Every morning in December each family member breaks a link and does something nice for the person whose name is on the back of the link. If someone gets their own name, they pass it on to another family member.

We modified the idea a bit.  We build a paper chain as well, but we write random acts of kindness committed by our members of our family on it as they occur in the month of December.  So some days there might be many links made and some days there might be none. It is very fun to watch it grow! We leave it by the advent calendar so Santa can see it. It took a few days to get it going but it has definitely instilled the Christmas Spirit in our house this year!

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Simple Words

November 5, 2010 2 comments

I picked up a book at the library recently entitled The Book of Nurturing by Richard and Linda Eyre. Having read some of their books before, I knew I would enjoy it.

This past week I shared an excerpt with my husband from the book (as I often do) that struck me as something so simple for parents to do, but which most of us probably have not thought to do. It struck me as so simple and so easy, yet so impactful.

In the excerpt that I shared with my husband, the authors recount running into the daughter of a family they used to know and they were struck by her poise and self confidence. They asked her what parenting techniques she remembers her parents using. And here is the amazing part – she said they did not have much time for parenting methods, but that they made her feel that she mattered. At bedtime, her father would take her face in his hands, look deep in her eyes and tell her that he loved her and that she is his first priority. That he is completely committed to her and the rest of the family and always will be. The girl says she still can recall those words and that they warm her even now.

Of course, action needs to back such words, but what a great way to go to sleep!