Woohoo, it’s finally here! Christmas Time!! At Emma Slowe Children’s Entertainer, we love Christmas from top to bottom, inside and out! This month, we wanted to talk about how to create magical memories of Christmas for the children in your life, the kind of memories that they will treasure for a lifetime so that when they are all grown up and Christmas rolls around again, they will carry the warmth of Christmas in their hearts and delight in sharing it with their children.
Christmas is first and foremost a tradition and traditions are individual to each family. But we have to guard these traditions over time or before we know it, they will have disappeared. So, whether you are a parent or guardian who has your own traditions that you are keen to pass onto your children, or if you don’t have any but want to start making your own ones now that there are little ones in your life, read on.
Finding the Meaning of Christmas
Before we can start making memories for our children, we need to know what those memories should be made of. Look, we know only too well that Christmas means lots of different things to different people. For some, it still is – and will always be, about the birth of the baby Jesus. For others, it’s about family. Still others like to focus on the sense of goodwill that abounds at this time of year. And then we have all the other parts that feed into Christmas, like gifts, and food, and movies, decorations, and pantos, etc.
Whatever Christmas means to you, in your family, that’s the place to start when it comes to making magical memories for your children. Most people will agree that commercialism takes some of the goodness out of Christmas for them now. If that’s true, how do we inject the goodness back into it?
Your Christmas Star
The Star of Bethlehem was what led the Wise Men to the manger, and it’s also what all sorts of travellers used for navigational purposes once upon a time. If you decorate your home with a star, why not imbue it with the principles of Christmas that are important in your family. Explain to your children the significance of the star for you and how it can guide you to bring Christmas alive for everyone you meet over the Christmas season?
You could even wrap the whole family up on Christmas eve and go for a spin a little bit outside of the city where you can see the stars. Take some hot chocolate along with you and get everyone involved in trying to identify the different stars. Don’t forget to watch out for Santa whizzing past in his sleigh! Then you can race home and hop into bed to wait for his arrival.
For some people, religion is at the heart of Christmas – and there is no such thing without religion. But, in an increasingly secular society, how can you make this part of Christmas as special for your children as the gifts and everything else? Again, if we reach back in time, we can find some tools to help us.
In days gone by, stories were shared from one generation to another about all sorts of things, including bible stories. Do your best to bring your faith to life for young children through stories. You don’t have to read them from a book, just tell them as you understand them, this way, your passion will come through in the telling of it. Why not use your crib figurines to help bring it to life? An evening spent around the fire in this way is sure to help your children grasp the significance of Christmas as you see it.
Make It About Giving
Plenty of kids are renowned for Santa wish lists the length of their arm. While we all like to be remembered and enjoying receiving a gift, as adults, we finally realise how much better it feels to give a well-chosen gift than to receive one. I saw this image recently and I love it!
Let’s help children to learn the lesson of giving at an early age by encouraging giving at Christmas. Giving doesn’t have to involve expensive gifts. It doesn’t mean that they decide they want to gift a PlayStation to charity and that you fork out for it.
In this picture, Mickey Mouse shares half of what he has with his friend, Pooh, creating the iconic images that we all know and love. Help your children to identify what they have that they can share freely with others. Often, our most precious resource is time. Much of the time, children will baulk at the idea of spending a day helping others, they’d rather take the easy option. How many of us adults are guilty of that too?
Again, much like anything else, what at first seems like a drag can be made fun with the right attitude and a little effort! Inject fun into your day spent helping others by dressing up, or by making a game of it. Where there’s a will, there’s a way!
Don’t forget all the other gifts that your child has that they can share with others. You know them best and you know what incredible talents they have. Perhaps they could record a song for a loved one which will make a very special gift that they can cherish for years? If art is their special talent encourage them to use that, or maybe baking is something they particularly enjoy? You could bake some mince pies together and donate them to charity.
If your child has a flair for the arts or they are something that your family value, consider putting together a schedule of events which will help them to take in all of the creativity that abounds at this time of year?
It doesn’t need to be ‘high art’, but it could be! There are pantomimes, musicals, ballets, choir recitals, light exhibitions, storytelling and even seasonal Christmas displays all over the country! Choose the ones that appeal to you and your family and really drink in all the culture that’s on offer at Christmastime.
This month at Emma Slowe Children’s Entertainer we are very busy helping out at the different locations that Santa is due to visit in the coming weeks. There is nothing better than seeing the face of a child light up when they visit Santa for the first time. The sense of delight and awe is something that we lose as adults. Yet, there are children who are already jaded with visiting Santa. They might have hit every grotto in their area and it isn’t anything special anymore. As adults, we long to help keep that magical wonder alive in children for as long as possible. You can choose what type of ‘Christmas hype’ your children are exposed to. Choose carefully and help to mould your child’s early experiences of this magical time of year. Although they may never verbally thank you for it, their love affair with Christmas is something you will be able to watch and take pride in each year.
As mentioned, Emma Slowe Children’s Entertainer is popping up all over the place this month. Follow us on Facebook to see what we’re up to!