SHALE Featured Website Nov Dec 2018 Lauren

5 Ways to Make This Holiday Season Special for the Family

As the holidays approach, families get to spend some quality time together again between school breaks. This time can be used for many different things, but making quality time a priority is always a good option.

Why waste those precious days with your kids plopped in front of a TV or iPad? Instead, find ways to maximize your time and make lasting memories that are both fun and functional! Here are some ideas for you to consider doing with your family as 2018 comes to an end.

1. Arts and Crafts

Options are endless in this area. Get some wooden figures or letters to decorate, ceramic ornaments for the Christmas tree or just simple construction paper and crayons and let the kids do their thing. Give them ideas on what they can do to get into the holiday spirit with their art, such as a word map of things they are grateful for on Thanksgiving or design a unique snow globe of their favorite Christmas characters. Again, options for arts and crafts are endless and many times you have an array of items already at your home to allow your child’s imagination and creativity create a masterpiece to be enjoyed around the holidays for years to come.

2. Start a new tradition

Traditions are wonderful for families and especially children. It’s something to look forward to each year as a regular occurrence. Traditions can be something small and fun, just make it something you and your family will look forward to each year. Maybe it’s a specific food made together in the kitchen, like decorating cookies or making homemade peanut brittle. Perhaps a physical activity with some friendly competition is more your family’s speed, such as a holiday season basketball game and winners get to choose a special dessert to be served on Thanksgiving. Regardless of the tradition, your family will appreciate the consistency and nostalgia of your special activity.

3. Donate

Nothing promotes the holiday spirit more than helping others. Whether it’s cleaning out the closet to find those outgrown clothing items and abandoned toys or giving your time to a worthy cause, your family will be humbled and happy to help others in the season of joy and cheer. There are plenty of options for donating your items and time. One fun idea you can do from the comfort of your own home is to make care packages for the needy. Get together some everyday items such as hygiene items, snacks, water, etc. to put into a large zipper bag and package it with a warm “happy holidays” message from your family to be given to a shelter or hospital of your choice.

4. Learn together

With the kids out of school, don’t let the opportunities for your family to continue to learn together slip away. Visit a nature center or museum, do science experiments in the kitchen or watch (child-friendly) documentaries and have discussions on what you learn. A family that is rich in knowledge will find opportunities to learn together to be of the greatest of gifts.

5. Make a meal together

Nothing brings people together like food. Try to pick a recipe that the kids can help with. Depending on their ages, your choices might be limited. However, putting together an easy meal everyone contributes to will bring satisfaction to your hearts and tummies when you sit down for a family meal. Kids can help with pouring, stirring, measuring, serving and more depending on their age and it will also help them to learn confidence in the kitchen as they age.

Happy holidays from the SHALE team!

About the author: Lauren Guerra is the Chief Operating Officer and Editor-in-Chief of SHALE Magazine. For editorial inquiries, please email lauren@shalemag.com.

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