As usual, my husband and I have our hands full this holiday. Thanksgiving Day came and went in a blur, and now we’re getting ready for the Christmas festivities. Because our home is large enough and suitably equipped, we’re having our extended family over again. Although, it must be said that my husband and I are not traditional celebrants of this time of the year. Because others are now dependent on our hospitality, we’ve thankfully been given the rule of the roost to do things our way.
In fact, while we’ve done away with traditional roast turkeys, beef and lamb along with piping hot overcooked vegetables ladled with creamy cheese sauces and topped off with hot puddings and yet more cakes and fruit mince pies, my husband is busy getting things ready on our patio. He’s not expending an arm and a leg, mind you; he’s pretty adept around the barbecue fire and all the other outdoorsy things that go along with it.
He has hands to help too. I’ll be preparing wholesome grilled vegetables – they don’t take long to get ready – and putting together a few salad dishes. Instead of ice-cream (not even the kids will be feasting on this) I’m putting together a gargantuan bowl of fresh fruit salad which will be served with a helping of fat-free yogurt and a portion of dark chocolate mousse.
Speaking of the kids, we’re old hands at that too. I’m proud to say, we’ve got four of our own. We have a nice balance of two girls and two boys, basically two sets of twins. None of them are alike and the kids have all learned to share and care alike, two to a bedroom. They’ve also got more than enough things to keep them busy with too.
My husband and I have taught our growing ones to be the perfect hosts and hostesses, although being children; they still seem reluctant to share their toys with their visitors. And because it’s Christmas, they’re going to have their hands full too. Also because it’s either snowing or raining, that hasn’t stopped us from preparing outdoor activities for them either. Jumping castles and outdoor gyms are out for now, so you could get your husband (or have someone else do this) build a cozy Wendy house for the kids to romp about in.
We believe in giving our kids the best education possible, but we also realize that they need to play too. So, instead of spoiling them with action dolls that resonate with violent tendencies, we ply them with constructive sets like building blocks and graphic word puzzles. We also know that growing kids already love computers. Did you know that you can now download child-friendly software which has tons of educational games for them to play?
Then there’s movies, especially when it’s far too chilly to be outdoors. We’re a peace-loving family and don’t believe in promoting violence and other harmful societal mores which can leave indelible impressions on the kids. So, we usually line up a few golden oldies, family-centered tales which are wholeheartedly narrated and devoid of anything explicit. And what kid doesn’t love his or her animals?
Cartoon-like features with animals as the star attractions are always worth a laugh or two. That’s just about five ideas to help keep your holiday guests’ kids happy for a few hours. Of course, you get the picture that there are dozens of other ideas which come close to what we’ve been trying to promote here. Things may get a little out of hand with so many kids roaming about and unable to stifle their excitement. But we’ve found that disciplining the kids at this time of the year is a cinch. The trick still works well among adults, so why not continue the carrot and (figurative) stick treatment with the kids as well?
You see, there’s the not so small matter of the green Christmas tree, resplendent with colorful decorations and lights and those mysteriously wrapped gifts keeping the tree’s roots warm. One last thought before we wish you happy holidays. That old saying that children should be seen and not heard? Ditch it, its nonsense; children should be seen and heard. Happy holidays everyone!
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