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Teaching Kids About Kindness and Giving in the Holiday Season

Teaching Kids About Kindness and Giving in the Holiday Season

from http://www.thechirpingmoms.com

  Teach Your Kids About St. Nicholas

Santa Claus is also known as St. Nick.  St. Nicholas was actually a real Saint who was known for being kind, helping those in need, & for his love for children.  You can find more about St. Nicholas & additional resources here.  St. Nicholas often left things for those in need, without wanting any rewards or publicity.  He often left bread for families in need, on their door steps, while they were asleep.  This is how the tradition started of children leaving out their shoes on the night of December  5th, in hopes that St. Nicholas would stop by & fill their shoes with treats.  post  

  Read Holiday Stories that Encourage A Giving Spirit

Here are some great books & videos that teach about St. Nick & encourage giving in the holiday season to have in your own family library during the holiday season: 

 Take Time Amidst Holiday Chaos to Say Grace and Discuss Blessings & Kindness during Meal Times

The holiday season is busy with parties, events, shopping, & so much more.  But try to take time each day to take a break from the chaos and say thanks & share gratitude for your daily lives.  This often happens at dinner time for our house.  We sit down, say our blessing, & as we talk about our days, we try to highlight with our kids some of the things that they are grateful for.

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December 4 Meeting Recap

Hello MOPS mamas!  We’ve begun our month of Embracing Rest During the Holiday Season.  To start us off, we had a wonderful speaker today – Amanda Wilson, Lifestyle and Wellness Coach.  She spoke on Creating Joyful Living, 3 Simple Secrets for Success.  She can be found at amanda@YourMotionCoaching.com.   She had so much to share on how to deal both physically and mentally with stress in our lives.  She pointed out that we can’t control our external stressors (for example, bad events in the news) and there will always be some of these in our lives, so we have to learn to deal with them effectively.  Here’s a brief recap for you:

Secret 1:  Gratitude

  • Take the good from our experiences, even during stressful moments.
  • Try doing 3 Good Things, a technique developed by a doctor from Duke.  Teaches us to rewire our brain towards gratitude.  Within two hours of going to sleep, write down three good things that day, what our role was in making those good things happen, and identify the emotion we felt related to them.

Secret 2:  Being Present

Tool #1:  Create a Pause

  • Take a mom time out and do something active like push-ups, breathing techniques, jumping jacks.
  • Breathe using volcano or bunny breathing techniques.

Tool #2:  Attention Training

  • Use your senses to be aware of your environment and focus on each one.
  • Give yourself permission to be _________.  All emotions are OK!
  • To take yourself out of fight or flight mode in a stressful situation or when making a hard decision:  throw a ball against a wall, throw a ball with another person, do a Sodoku or crossword, anything to increase frontal lobe activity and improve focus and reason.

“We spend more time imagining future pleasure than experiencing joy in the present.  In our effort to improve the present moment, we fail to appreciate how good it already is.” – Amit Sood, MD, The Mayo Clinic Guide for Stress-Free Living

Secret 3:  Create a Plan

  • Make it your journey, specific to your stressors, personality and life phase.  Try to change YOUR world to help change THE world.
  • Plan for imperfection, learn from mistakes (i.e. teachable moments).  It’s fine if we’re not the best at everything!
  • Practice the first two secrets often so they become a quick response to stress.
  • Don’t use avoidance to deal with problems – this doesn’t actually address the stress.


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November 20 Meeting Recap

Today was a craft day, and our group made 14 beautiful, cozy blankets today for the women being served by Acts of Grace (http://actsofgracefoundation.org).  Nice job ladies!  We pray the women who receive them will feel the love and support of fellow moms.  The blankets will be wrapped with ribbon and a card, and everything will be delivered the week of Christmas!

Here are some of the beautiful blankets and beautiful ladies:
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We will also be collecting magazines, books, and DVDs to fill the library shelves of Acts of Grace!  These are very helpful to the moms as they pass the long hours in their hospital rooms.  Please bring your donations to our meeting this Friday.
As we begin December, our focus this month will be on Embracing Rest During the Holiday Season.  We have a great speaker lined up this Friday, December 4 and hope you can join us!  We’ll hear from Amanda Wilson, a lifestyle and wellness coach, about Managing Stress Through the Holidays.  Amanda lives in the Denver metro area and is a woman of God, mother, and wife who loves supporting women in embracing and enjoying motherhood.  She will share simple, practical tools to reduce stress and focus on what’s important during this time of year.