Posts tagged with: family

Rethinking the Holidays: Goal Number Eight

The last two holiday seasons have just been too stressful for me. I have not enjoyed them at all. I have not had the money that I wished that I had had in order to purchase gifts for people, and I admit to feeling guilty about this.

Because of this feeling of guilt, I have decided to rethink my views on the holidays.

I am going to think about what is important to me:

  1. My spirituality.
  2. My friends.
  3. My family.

Gifts are not at the top of my list. So, why do I feel so guilty about not having the money to purchase gifts for people? They all love the things that we bake and craft for them, so why do I feel like I am not doing enough?

I plan to answer these questions this winter, and form my plan for the next holiday season.

Shannon

P.S. What are your views on this topic? Feel free to post them in the comments section. Thank you.

Other Articles of Interest:

New Years Day

Goals for the New Year

Weight Loss and Nutrition: Goal Number Two

Mental and Emotional Health: Goal Number One

Weight Loss and Nutrition: Goal Number Two

Writing (or any number of other activities that could lead to possible income): Goal Number Three

Simplify and Declutter: Goal Number Four

Greening: Goal Number Five

Gardening: Goal Number Six

Spiritual: Goal Number Seven

Helping Others: Goal Number Nine


Spiritual: Goal Number Seven

I do not really have a lot to say on religion. It is such a personal choice for each person. Even people who share religions have their own beliefs.

But I do believe that we all need to have faith in something: God, The Goddess, family…something that we believe in above all else. Something of importance to us.

I am working on expanding my spiritual studies this year, but my biggest faith lies within my family and friends.

Shannon

P.S. What are you doing to further your spiritual life? Please post your answers in the comments section. Thank you.

Other Articles of Interest:

New Years Day

Goals for the New Year

Weight Loss and Nutrition: Goal Number Two

Mental and Emotional Health: Goal Number One

Weight Loss and Nutrition: Goal Number Two

Writing (or any number of other activities that could lead to possible income): Goal Number Three

Simplify and Declutter: Goal Number Four

Greening: Goal Number Five

Gardening: Goal Number Six

Rethinking the Holidays: Goal Number Eight

Helping Others: Goal Number Nine


Family Gift Making for the Holidays

Most of last week was spent planning the craft projects that we would do in order to have gifts for everyone that we love and hold dear. This planning was done by myself, my daughter (16), and my nephew (11).

We had done some pre-planning as well, collecting candle and holder cast-offs, as well as flowers to dry and pinecones and acorns. We dried the flowers, dug candle ends from holders, washed the candle holders, bought wicks and saved used soup cans which we also washed out and removed the lids to. My sister and I had also purchased cheap craft kits at A.C. Moore for my nephew, and he is making gifts for people from those.

What were the reasons for such madness?

Lack of funds for purchasing gifts. We are planning to make and bake all of the gifts that we will be giving to people. We have cut down to getting family gifts only, except for the one celebration that has very small children in attendance. Their gifts will also be homemade.

In all honesty, I cannot even afford to purchase gifts for my own daughters, except two gifts costing a total of under $20.00 for Zowie (16). I also acquired a gift that she will really appreciate through Freecycle. The gifts for Skye (19) I worked for by helping a neighbor with numerous tasks. I took these very nice items in trade, and my daughter will love them.

Here I offer up some ideas for your gift-making adventures:

  • Recover old pillows/pillow forms with tied fleece.
  • Make homemade ornaments from pinecones.
  • Make homemade tied fleece blankets for little ones, from old fleece blankets.
  • Make homemade sticker albums.
  • Bake homemade breads, brownies, cakes and cookies.
  • Make homemade scrapbooks. Make homemade jewelry.

Making homemade gifts teaches children and teenagers many things, including frugality and economics when you are discussing why you are making things instead of purchasing them. It also teaches the important values of reduce, reuse and recycle when you create new things from old materials. Children will have a sense of pride that comes from accomplishing something good, and they will learn valuable life skills. For math, you can have them figure out what purchasing gifts for everyone would have cost them, as well as tax, and then by seeing how much they saved by making things. As for environmentalism? Take them to the store so that they can see how much packaging is involved when purchasing new items, explain how much packaging is involved in shipping, and discuss with them how much petroleum is used to ship the products from place to place.

There is a lot that can be learned from making our own gifts, but I am partial to the time spent with the children while we are making the items. Last Sunday, we all spent time making candles together. My nephew also spent most of last week making his own gifts for people. Time spent with children doing these things is a precious resource in-and-of itself.

Spending time creating things together is also a great way to teach children appreciation and caring ways, which are important traits in anyone.

Shannon

P.S. Do you have any ideas for making holiday gifts? Please share them with us in the comments section. Thank you.

Other Articles of interest:

Children and Boredom

Family Bowling


Family Bowling

When my daughters, Skye and Zowie, were younger, we used to go bowling. I do not bowl because of a back injury, so I always kept score. They loved playing against each other, and a little friendly competition never hurt anyone.

We would spend time together before and after bowling by walking there and back. They would bowl, and even created their own victory dances. We all had a great time.

Before heading home, we would go to the pizza place for lunch or dinner. This allowed us even more time to connect. Many things were discussed during these times together, and I will cherish the memories together.

Even when they were younger teenagers, they loved this tradition. We would go at the change of every season so that we could all be looking forward to it. As they got older, we began inviting one or more of their friends along with us, which allowed me to catch up with them as well.

Shannon

P.S. What is a family tradition that you and your child(ren) have? Discuss this with us in the comments section. Thank you.

Other Articles of Interest:

Resources for Single Mothers: Raising Teenagers

What Chores can My Children Do?