By: Ashley Rives
Stores and homes are getting dressed up with festive lights, hot cocoa is being sipped and your kids are thumbing through the holiday toy catalog. It is that time of year again – the Holidays are coming! While sharing this festive season with your family is sure to be memorable, this time of year can also be quite hectic!
Many families hop from one holiday event to another, often staying up late and eating way too much. This, for some families, is just part of the season. But, with young children, celebrating the holidays can be overwhelming. How do we help children keep the consistency of their normal daily lives during the hustle and bustle of the Holiday Season?
Here are some tips to help your child make it through the holidays without a melt-down!
- Try to keep naps consistent when you know your child will be staying up late.
- Bring pajamas to evening get togethers and put them on before leaving. This way, kids can be in the bedtime mode on the way home.
- Discuss with your child what will happen each day during the holiday break. Talk about where he or she will be going and who he or she will see. This helps prepare children for what comes next and lessens anxieties when arriving at events.
- During the holidays there are lots of sweets to be had! Try to limit your child’s intake of sweets. This may avoid a sugar crash later!
- Bring familiar foods. This is particularly important for babies and toddlers. If they are used to eating certain table foods, bring them with you, as they may not be available at a family member’s home.
- Bring along some favorite books or toys, especially if you know that there will not be any where you may be visiting. Having an unfamiliar family member or friend read a familiar book with your child could help them get to know each other better!
- Often during this season, parents are off work and children are out of school. Try to keep your days consistent by waking children around the normal time, eating around normal times and go to bed at the normal time. The more familiar your days are, the less likely your child will have a melt-down.
- Incorporate learning into the holiday season. Just because school is out, doesn’t mean all learning should stop! Practice math facts in the car, or count the presents around the tree. Sneak in little bits of learning practice here and there and it most likely will not feel like work!
- Encourage proper hand washing to keep any sickness at bay. Getting sick during the holidays is no fun!
- Breathe and enjoy the holiday season with your children! It is a great time of year to be thankful for the blessings of family.