This is the season of generosity and sharing…of giving and receiving…and maybe it’s a time to reflect on cultivating the attitude of gratitude.
There is an art to recieving that is sometimes harder to learn than the art of giving. Certainly our kids can use a reminder of how to graciously respond to the gifts and goodies of the holidays.
We learn most vividly and most profoundly, from the examples of our parents and those we love and admire. At school, I often pause before or after doing something for a student, to await the appropriate “please or thank you”. And I am constantly vigilant that I also model the behaviors I desire to see in others. After a while, students will encourage each other to give the correct “magic” words…and so we all learn!
We all need to help kids understand that if something is given, or done thoughtfully–it requires a thank you..always…every time…period.
Kids need to know that while they may not like every gift they recieve, each gift deservesa polite and heart-felt acknowledgement and a thank.
When visiting other people’s homes, it’s good and right to accept offers of food and drink. But remind them that a “Yes, please, that sounds great!” is better than a, “No, thank you” any day.
Encourage your kids, before hand, to be willing to try new and different things…while they don’t have to care for the food, they should be expected to give it an honest try, and to thank the hostess for what she has prepared.
Thank you notes are always appreciated…especially when written by children…and writing notes as kids will probably turn into a life-long habit. Thank you notes don’t have to be long… Just include the following:
- be genuine
- focus on the gift given
- tell why it is special to you
- sound friendly
- 3-4 lines is great
Part of the satisfaction of giving is from the reflected warmth of the reciever….we do without or with less, to spread that joy around. Be a role model for your children, cultivate healthy living, cultivate joyful living, cultivate gratitude…and have a Happy Healthy Holiday Season!
Be blessed, Kersten