Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Five Ways to Involve Your Children in the Holiday Preparation.

November 29, 2019 by  
Filed under Opinion, Weekly Columns

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( The holidays are here. As we gather together for thanksgiving and prepare for Christmas there are a lot of traditions continuing and many that are being established. I remember being a little girl excited about the holidays because it was a time when my family decorated together, sat around and chatted about the meaning of the holiday, and my favorite part…we got together to cook. A lot of what I know of holiday décor and more so cooking came from my elders. We live in a time where there is a large generational gap between the elders, young adults, and the children. Holiday cooking seems more for the older generation while the younger are too busy with life per se. Though they love coming together to eat and discuss whose mother, grandmother, aunt, dad, uncle or grandfather cooked the best of the traditional dishes. However, we don’t always think far enough in advance to realize one day we will be them. Too many of us can cook for every day but can’t contribute to the holiday cooking. It is an awesome idea to allow the children in the family to participate in the holiday preparation. These are five ways you can get them involved.

1. Allow your children in the kitchen when you cook on a regular basis. When children are young some of them express an interest in wanting to help cook; sometimes they are just in the kitchen to watch. Yes, you have a million things to do and you need to do them quickly but consider slowing down for the children in the kitchen. Allow them to feel welcome to come in the kitchen and help you cook a meal. This will turn into them wanting to help you cook for the holidays. There is more than enough work to go around. While you are teaching them cooking prep, you are also passing on family recipes and traditions for them to cherish.

2. Let them contribute to the holiday menu. Allow the making of the menu to be a family affair whereby your children and add input and commit to help with the dish they submitted to the list.

3. Take the kids with you to the store to do the holiday shopping. I admit this can call for an abundance of patience. However, they are with you through the entire process. Whether its for the menu or decorating the house allow them to help you find the items you need, and while doing so you can begin helping them to understand how a meal, or holiday décor, comes together.

4. When you are preparing the house for decorating allow them to help with more than just the cleaning. If you have to make items allow them to stretch their artistic creativity while also teaching them to create for a theme. You will cherish what they have made for years to come, and they will be very proud of what they have contributed.

5. We are all encourage by a good time. Put the phones away, until its time to take pictures, break out the snacks and the music and turn holiday prep into a family fun time. In this space your children are contributing in the kitchen and around the house, but more importantly they are enjoying creating memories with you. This is a great space for family bonding.

Involving your children in preparing for the holidays strengthens their bonds to their family. It will give them memories with you that will last them a lifetime. Furthermore, it makes your holiday preparation so much more fun, and it keeps you young. As the children help over the years, they will begin to help own the family traditions you hold dear. In these spaces you will be able to teach them things about family, life, love and living that will help them throughout this journey called life.

Staff Writer; Christian Starr

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