Festive month is exciting time for all of us, adult and child-alike! So here are a few parenting tips to prevent children going hyper during the festive season and still let them enjoy the holiday and create new memories.
Becoming a parent brings it’s own joys and challenges to the festive period. So how can we find that happy medium between creating wonderful new festive memories with our children, family and friends and preventing the children becoming so boisterous and over-hyper that there are tears before bedtime?
So – just how can we be a Santa-parent rather than a “Grinch”-parent?
How can we still have fun with decorating the tree, putting up the tinsel, preparing for the Christmas parties, the endless shopping and gorging on chocolate and still avoid the children becoming boisterously over-excited? In short, how to be Santa and not Scrooge?
Put all the planned activities for this festive season into your family calendar so that your children can easily track what they are doing each day. Excitement is a natural part of the wait for the big day, so turning the exciting events into a day-to-day plan helps relieve the stress of the long wait.
Also, it will help you avoid the endless “when are we going to the party?” questions. And less stress on you too!
2. New routine.
It’s almost impossible to avoid the kids ignoring their normal routine and timings during the festive weeks. It’s all fun and joy when it’s the start of the holiday season but their regular routine and needs can easily be disrupted so that children end up tired and irritable and miss the joy of the big day.
So, declare a “new HOLIDAY routine”. It might be a later bed time or an extra chocolate a day but it should still be regulated. As a result you can still control the “going wild” factors but let your little ones enjoy the privilege of having “holiday” extras.
3. Advent Calendar of Good Deeds.
We find it great that alongside the Advent Calendar’s chocolate treats certain deeds of kindness are in place for the kids to do. We initiated Kids Christmas Challenge to encourage children to make those little contributions that they are able to make with or without parents.
Therefore, even for kids the festive season can be a time of “giving” as well as receiving!—followed by Santa’s appreciation! Do not forget to make a list of what the children can help you with. Again, less stress for you!
4. Evening is the key
Let the kids go wild (it’s their holidays after all!) in the mornings and daytime. Leave the evenings for planned quiet activities still related to Christmas. It could be Christmas crafts, reading Christmas books, baking gingerbread or making Christmas cards. And not forgetting those all-important Christmas films which add so much to childhood memories. So try mixing the old and the new—introduce them to classics like “It’s a wonderful Life” and “White Christmas” inbetween the modern ones like “The Polar Express”, Elf” and “ The Santa Clause”!
Need some ideas for quiet games? Take a look at our collection of activities for all ages.
5. Out out out! Let it snow let it snow!
Fresh air is great for burning all that boisterous energy and those extra chocolate-induced calories, and for general wellbeing ,for body as well as for mind. Let children get rid of the extra energy with some energetic walks or (weather-permitting) some snowballing and skating.
Better still, write in the walks in the calendar as planned activities.
That hot-chocolate tastes so much better after an afternoon of outdoor activities!
That is also a good reason for you to leave your house and all that housework and get a bit of that Christmas spirit literally from the air.
Experts tell us how important it is to control sugar intake.
So here are a few tips to control it:
– Decide in advance and declare the extra amount of chocolate, sweets etc the children are allowed to have each day,
– Agree on what you are buying (or how much you are buying) on Christmas fairs (sweets might be the first thing the kids see) BEFORE you leave the house,
– Make a basket (certainly decorated) to store some of the sweets they receive or buy each day, motivating them to eat after Christmas when the gift-giving has ended.
Let’s make this the most important tip of all!
We all know how hectic and busy the festive time is – both because of our desire to make it special and the kids’ excited anticipation.
The less stressed we are – the more chance the kids will feel comfortable and stay within their usual behaviour patterns.
Therefore, make sure you are kind to yourself and do not overload yourself with activities to make PERFECT holiday fun for EVERYONE. Give a break to your usual home and care routine – it’s holiday time so no one will notice the clutter all around the house!
Make sure you are not missing your own Christmas fun. So go and meet your friends, take time to write your own letter to Santa, go out for parties and put all these activities in the same festive calendar.