The kids are beside themselves with excitement. You are a bit anxious and hoping that all will go well.
No matter what holiday you’re celebrating in your house, the energy and excitement of this time of year is in the air and the kids are all catching it.
There are some things you can do to make this a wonderful time for you and the kids.
On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day get outside. Let the kids run and play. Go tobogganing or skating. Fresh air and exercise are not only good for your kids (and you), they are the key to harnessing excitement and child energy. And, they love it!
Going out to look at the magical light displays is always fun for the whole family. If possible go somewhere that encourages parking and then walking. In the Lower Mainland, where I live, my favourites are Van Dusen gardens and the uplifting experience of walking Trinity Street.
Many communities have neighborhoods where the folks have come together in a common cause and married fund raising with terrific light displays. Check your local listings.
Involve the kids in determining a morning plan. Okay, they’ll be so excited that there will be bumps in the schedule, but a plan gives you something to fall back on.
What time can they get up? When can they waken you? Can they open their stockings as soon as they are out to bed?
Some families find letting the kids get to their stockings first thing takes the panic out of the day. And, of course, an orange in the toe means they actually eat something that’s nutritious.
Plan a proper breakfast and when you are going to eat it. Between stockings and gifts is a great idea.
Try to have the kids open one gift at a time so they can actually see what they are getting and you can note where it came from. (Just like you do at a shower). The trick is to assign the kids the task of handing out presents, including to the adults.
If you have a gap of time between the flurry of gifts and the traditional meal (and most do), plan an outing. In my part of the world I was surprised to learn that the local Aquarium is open and the kids found that a trip to visit the marine life was a real treat.
If you are going to make phone calls to absent family members remember to take into account the time change.
During the holiday time, try to ensure that your little ones get their naptime as usual and that bedtime is nearly often maintained.
For the older kids, a downtime is a good idea. Maybe they can settle down for a reading time or watch a video.
With a little thought and planning the whole family can have a wonderful time.
What has worked for you? We’d love to have your tips added to this posting.
Merry Christmas from Parenting Today.