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Holiday Time Means Quality Time

Family game night or baking cookies are suggestions for keeping bored kids busy while they're home from school for the holidays. (V. Carter)
Family game night or baking cookies are suggestions for keeping bored kids busy while they're home from school for the holidays. (V. Carter)
December 27, 2016

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – By now, kids across Missouri may be going a little stir-crazy from the holiday break - and parents may be counting the days until their return to school. But experts are reminding us about the importance of quality time this holiday.

Samantha Gray, executive director of the group Attachment Parenting International, said it's important to remind ourselves about how much the holiday break means to children.

"Try to see it from their point of view; they have a lot of anticipation about it," she said. "Then, planning a few things, don't over plan, but have a couple of kind of 'milestones.' So, that kind of thing helps us make the most of the days, because actually by the end of it, it's over faster than you knew."

She said 'milestones' may be a plan to see a movie one day, and baking cookies the next. Gray added that it's also important as an adult to know when to take a moment for yourself if patience runs thin. She said holiday traditions, no matter how small, are valued by children, so don't underestimate their importance.

While the build-up to the holidays often makes parents feel like every event should look like a scene from "It's a Wonderful Life," Gray said you can look for ways to make it easier on you, and offers an example:

"You create these high expectations, and saying, 'This year we're just going to do ready-made hors d'oeuvres for Christmas Eve. We're not going to go all-out and make every single thing from scratch.'"

Other ways to spend quality time with kids include a family game night, going for a walk, having a movie night or cooking together.

Veronica Carter, Public News Service - MO