the joys of doing a service project with kids

This year, my little girl, Rachel, will turn exactly 2 1/2 on Christmas Eve.  She’s beginning to understand a lot more, so we made a decision that this year we would focus with her more on what Christmas is actually about.  Not the toys, the gifts, the food etc…, but the meaning behind it all.  Since she’s only 2, we kept it basic, “baby Jesus has his birthday on Christmas.  He was a present from God to us”.  And, so far, she’s doing pretty good with it.  I think it has helped that all of the presents we do have are wrapped and hiding, so she can’t see them.  I think this is something we’ll continue to do as they get older! 

So, part of the season is helping to spread joy because that’s what Jesus does for us.  To that end, I planned a little service project in which we made little reindeer candy canes, and took them to a retirement/nursing home to hand out.  The making was so much fun!  She handed me the googly eyes and red pom poms and I hot glued them on.  We talked about what we were going to do with them, and by the end of making them, she knew we were going to give the candy canes to people to “make them happy”.  So sweet.

Yesterday we went and handed them out.  The place we went was familiar to us because my husband’s grandmother is there.  Rachel was so good.  She handed out candy canes with the other kids, and gave a hug to everyone she saw, regardless of their physical condition!  The kids sang a few songs, and Rachel busted out with her “ABC’s”.  Not Christmassy, but the residents sure enjoyed it! 

I was so proud of her, and of all of the kids for their participation!  The oldest in the group was 5, so for that age to really open up and be friendly with senior citizens was great.  We’re planning on doing this again, probably in February for Valentine’s Day. 

That’s it!

2 Comments on “the joys of doing a service project with kids

  1. Melissa told me that Rachel was awesome! Friendly and social and talking with the residents… You should be proud!

    My two on the other hand, were apparently, ahem, not quite so sociable. 🙂

  2. Rachel was great, and I am proud of her! I hope that by starting early she will learn to love doing stuff like this.
    Your boys were fine. I think they were mostly overwhelmed by the other kids, not the residents! All the others have been together A LOT… and that can be intimidating. We’ll do it again later, and maybe this time we can all get together to make them, and it will be better for them!

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