The fire is crackling, coffee brewing, the sun not yet up over the mountains. Morning is tranquil, time to reflect. Expectations to top last year, what are the greatest Christmas gifts we can give this year...
Beckoning the holidays, the plan today is to cut a Christmas tree as a family and do other outdoor chores on the to-do list. Lovely time of year, surrounded by family, good times and laughter. Our children are eagerly awaiting what they have oh so wanted for weeks if not months. If we're sneaky, we can eek out another couple weeks of good behavior as a bribe of sorts to appease the Christmas spirits, Santa Claus of course.
How things have come full circle, from when we were children in this very boat, to when we were young adults not having enough ornaments to fill a tree or holiday decorations to adorn our new little homes. To now, that position in the middle where you are now the rock of the family and holiday planning includes where the parents will sleep when they visit, recipes to try and somehow attempting presents for all on a perpetually tightening budget.
Our children are growing too fast. It seems just yesterday they were babies, it was their first Christmas, and we rejoiced gleefully with our new little family.
As they grow, kids each develop their own sense of happiness. Some dream of ballet, fairies and rose petals, some envision engineering draw bridges, cranes or mightly Lego helicopters. Many look outdoors for open space and wild adventure. None however really knowing what the big wide world has in store for them.
This holiday season, we challenge parents everywhere to learn what inspires your child. Look for that spark that lights them up. So many times we overlook these intricate details in our childrens' lives when we set out to buy Christmas presents.
Not this year! Spend that extra hour, day or two. Observe and talk to your child ahead of time. By fostering a child's dreams through subtleties, key items that will help them grow and learn, we are showing them the greatest support and love possible.
Before long, our kids will be grown, off on their own. I lament the day our house is quiet again with no kids running and laughing, leaving toys scattered up and down the hallway, inevitably waiting to be stepped on or tripped over.
For now, we do what we can. We do our best to raise our children to be strong, smart and independent. We provide them with rich learning environments and adventure. Join with us this Christmas season, give your child the greatest gift possible. That of time, love, support, and encouragement. These are the greatest Christmas gifts you can give your kids, everything they need to succeed in life.
We often forget that we as parents make all the difference in how our children think, act and make deisions in their own lives. If we teach our kids to be giving, humble and respectful, good karma awaits. Self-sufficiency, confidence and pride will come naturally. Take a moment to reflect this holiday season. Take time to get it right.
Here's wishing your family a very Merry Christmas, from all of us at Tuff Kids Outdoors!
P.S. and don't forget those that were most inspirational to you as a child, who made you who you are today.