In the midst of the holiday parties, the shopping, the presents……I started to worry. Is my daughter spoiled? I’m sharing 5 family activities we’ve decided to do to help her maintain perspective and to give back to her community.
The weather is finally cold here in Los Angeles. It’s actually (gasp) raining as I type this. Last week, I glanced at the forecast, and realized it’s finally cool weather time. I pulled our coats and warm sweaters out of the storage bins we keep them in (in our garage). I pulled out the warm jackets we bought last winter, the scarves, the gloves. I figured Lydia would need hers in the next few days. Then I glanced at the label. It was a 3T jacket. A super CUTE jacket. But a 3T. Now, Lydia is on the smaller side, but she just turned five. And she’s grown quite a bit.
The next day I went to school, and realized I wasn’t the only parent who had dug out the jackets. I saw plenty of children wearing new coats. But I also saw plenty of children wearing coats that were way too small, or children wearing no coats at all. I have to be honest, I went home with a pit in my stomach. And guess what was waiting for me? A huge box with Lydia’s adorable new jacket (cause I can afford to pay for overnight shipping). She loved it. I had even ordered my own grown up version from Abercrombie.
We headed to the park to play, and I couldn’t help it. I asked her. “Lydia do you think you get a lot of nice things?” Her answer? “I do. I’m very lucky. Did you know that some kids don’t even have jackets when it’s cold outside?”
Is she spoiled? I guess not. Is she blessed and does she have more than she needs? Absolutely. So Lydia and I spent a small part of our time at the park talking about how we could help kids that “aren’t as lucky as she is”. I wrote down her top 5 ideas, and we plan to do all of them before Christmas.
Family Activities that Give Back
Donating Old Coats and Jackets: Those outgrown jackets? We’ll be donating them to a local foster care group home. And to one up it? I ordered three more jackets from Abercrombie Kids. We’ll be donating those as well.
Giving Unwanted Toys to Children in Need: All those outgrown and gently used toys? Donate them to a local women and children’s shelter or a local school.
Adopt a Family: We always adopt a family through our local Children’s Hospital. I love that we get to go shopping for each family member, and Lydia can’t wait to pick out gifts for the kids.
Serve Meals: We will be serving meals at a local food bank, and helping assemble gift baskets for families to pick up (yes, I feel that Lydia is old enough to do this).
Thank Those Who Serve Us: From teachers to local police to the mail delivery team, we’ll be making a point of serving those who serve us. Lydia and I are baking cookies for each of them, and we’ll be attaching a gift card to each package.
I have to be honest, I often worry that between the fancy blog events, the trips to Disneyland, the gifts….that Lydia doesn’t have a sense of how lucky she is. I do worry that she is spoiled. And my goal? To balance our blessings by blessing others with our family activities. One adorable jacket at a time.