“Can I have some more of the red sprinkles?” “I need more green, who has the green?” These questions were being voiced as the cousins decorated the sugar cookies during our annual cookie day tradition. The kids have a great time decorating, tasting them and then delivering the cookies. My favorite part is delivering the cookies to our neighbors.
The kids get on their boots and take off down the street spreading Christmas cheer to the neighbors we know. It is so good for our children to learn from a young age how to give to others; not just our close family and friends but also our neighbors. They go to their doors with absolutely no expectation of anything in return, a far cry from most of our cultural gift giving experiences. They go with their hands full of homemade cookies and run home smiling “She said thanks mom and Merry Christmas!”
These are the lessons I like to teach my children; make gifts from scratch, cookies, cards, pictures etc. Give without expectations. Say thank you to others for being who they are, smile at others just to make them smile and lift their spirits. Teaching our children through our example is the greatest tool we have as parents. If you have given without expectations to strangers you know the reward far outweighs the gift we give. Try it today with a simple smile, a hello or a thank you and you will see what I mean.