With the holidays approaching, my mind starts to focus on ways to teach my children about the spirit of giving. It’s something we want to instill in them year-round, but when Christmas can easily have the focus of all the gifts they want to get, we especially want them to think about ways to help others.
A couple of years ago my friend and I took my kids out on Christmas Eve with the goal of finding ways to help others. We brainstormed different things to do, but I think one of my very favorite things we did was also one of the simplest; we brought a big tub of assorted candy to Target, and let the kids wear Santa hats and hand it out to people who were shopping or who were working. The kids loved it, and it brought a smile to people’s faces.
It’s easy to feel like you really need to do something big in order to make a difference, but the truth is little acts of kindness can go a long way. And doing several little things that are within your means is better than doing nothing because you don’t have the time or resources to accomplish it, don’t you think?
I encourage you to find little ways to spread care; in fact, I challenge you to find something each day in December. Involve your kids, so that the days leading up to Christmas are focused on giving to others rather than getting, getting, getting. If you’re stumped for ways to help, here are some suggestions:
- Write notes of encouragement on sticky notes and place them on mirrors in public restrooms, or on the backs of stall doors.
- Tape dollar bills to various toys in the dollar store with a little note for a child.
- Give Starbucks gift cards to people working on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day
- Create small care packages to deliver to nursing homes. Include a small box of chocolates, a notepad, some soft socks, and a cute container of Kleenex®. Have your child draw pictures to include with each package, and deliver them to residents with your kids.
- Get small individual packs of Kleenex® to hand out to people – with germs everywhere during the winter it’s a perfect small act of kindness.
When you’re making care packages, you can find great deals on a Kleenex winter pack and other quality brands too at Sam’s Club. It’s easy to buy in bulk and then you can make multiple care packages to pass out. And be sure and go soon! Until November 20 you can get $3 off the winter pack pictured above, making it an even better deal – and allowing you a little more room in your budget to spread care to even more people.