i mean "the gift of giving" in a little different sense. usually its used to mean that its a gift of giving something to someone, right? i am thinking of it in terms of giving my kids the gift of learning to give. its on my mind a lot lately, during this season.
i'd love to hear how other people instill this gift in their children...i'm sure we all want to have giving children...i'm sure we all have different ways of looking at this. right now i'm thinking about it as my little girl (9) plans out the rest of the gifts she's making for friends and family...and listening to her delight in planning it all out. and how excited she is to have them open them for christmas. she's so funny, she already has figured out that other kids aren't super interested in homemade things from other kids, but most grownups go gaga over them, LOL!
we've always encouraged out kids to give...since they were little, we've tried to get them to give something handmade...even if its just a little fingerpainted bookmark from a toddler. we don't necessarily do it every year for every person...but i try to somehow instill giving to my children each year in some way. sometimes its purchasing toys for a family in need.
a couple years ago we started giving maeven a little cash to purchase her own gifts for people...knowing that its very special to make your own gifts but sometimes there are things you want to buy as well. sometimes its supplies to put together, sometimes its a little item from a dollar store...they're all special. and dollar stores are great for this purpose, i tell ya. you can get a lot with very little and its all so exciting to little gift buyers. :)
maeven's been working extra hard this year on presents for loved ones that are homemade. and she also has things in mind to spend the xmas money on gifts for family as well. i talk to her about planning out who all she wants to purchase items for...and divide it up accordingly. she's done great with this in the past. and whether or not the gifts mean something to those that receive them, they mean something to her, and that's what i'm going for.
i hope i'm doing a good job at it. i am making it up as i go along, but she seems to be getting it. and tyren is still only 4, but he's slowly getting the idea some as well. this year i'm thinking of giving him a little xmas money to buy something for family members as well. and we'll do some homemade things as well.
there really is something so powerful to that feeling when you are able to give to someone else. its a feeling that i am very proud to share with my children. good heavens, i'm no saint. i don't give to every homeless person i see (and i see them every day)...i don't go out of my way to do wonderful things for people every day. i do what i can, when i can. and perhaps i could do more, but what we're doing seems to be working as i see the spark in my daughter's eyes as she talks about the special things she's making for her daddy and grandmas and grandpas and such. hopefully tyr will follow suit, as he gets older.
what do you do with your kids to help them experience the gift of giving? i really want to know! maybe you have some ideas i've not thought of that i might want to "steal"! :)