Give your family the best present this Christmas - the gift of TIME!
Although the days with little kids can seem to last forever, in reality those years fly by. We all play a little fast and loose these days with time, but it is the most precious thing you could ever possibly give your kids and family and it is also the best, most stable investment with a consistent return!
Whether they are are 12 months, 12 years or fully fledged teenagers, all they want, really, is time with their parents. Speaking as a parent of teens, the time spent with them becomes more on their terms than in the past, but they still desperately need to know that you are there for them, unconditionally.
Here we look at five things you can do, both big and small, to give your kids more of your time this Christmas.
1. Gift an activity rather than a toy
Sounds simple, but the latest remote control stunt car will soon be gathering dust at the back of a cupboard. Book an experience instead (you can still buy a matchbox car to unwrap) and take your kids to see real, live action that they will thrill sharing tales of afterwards! Or all try something for the first time, like horse-riding, or dry slope skiing. For older children why not learn a foreign language together? It might lead to a family activity that will give you years of quality time together.
2. Buy a Timeshare
Committing to one or two weeks a year in holiday resort will build a lifetime of memories, and doing it at today’s prices means the value gets better every year. Timeshare products also adapt as your family grows and though you may be Disney crazy right now, there will come a time when your kids will prefer clubbing in Ibiza… With timeshare exchange this is all possible, and the space a timeshare unit gives you means plenty of room for friends (including boy and girlfriends!)
Did you know?
Richard Gross of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab reports that the enormous tsunami-spawning earthquake off Japan last year not only shifted the planet’s axis by several inches, it also sped up the Earth’s rotation, shortening each day by 1.8 microseconds.
3. Cook dinner together
We all have to eat, and it’s so easy for just one person to have responsibility for feeding the family. How about splitting into parent and child combinations, and taking it in terms to ‘team cook’ for each other? Theme it Family MasterChef or Come Dine with Me. You will be teaching valuable life skills, as well as spending one-on-one time with each child. Eating those meals together (with all the banter it might bring around the dinner table) is one of the proven best ways of creating valuable time for each other.
4. Get a dog
Not something to be taken on lightly, and probably better waiting until children have passed the toddler stage, but a dog can add wonderful precious moments to a family. The excitement of choosing and adding a puppy or a rescue dog to your family, and the joint responsibility of a new furry member brings all the family together in a caring and sharing way. From family walks to just playing in the garden, a dog will add another level to time well spent.
5. Put your phone down
Yes your phone! Leading by example is the only way a child will take you seriously when you attempt to restrict their screen time. A phone may be way off in the future for your child right now, but there will come a time when it will be inevitable. If you have already set boundaries for yourself, enforcing them for your children will be so much easier, and with technology turned off, communication becomes so much more meaningful.
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