Let’s face it, we live in a world that’s about having ‘things’. Expensive things.
Kids have phones. Kids have tablets. Kids have video games, that cost more than things I buy for myself as an adult.
Here are some things you can DO to show your kids you love them, without breaking the bank.
- School lunch notes – Writing little notes on colorful pieces of paper, and putting on a sticker or two, is something your kid can look forward to every day. My 11 year old still loves getting them, and when I don’t do it, she lets me know she missed it. As your kids get older, they can go from a sappy note, to a funny one.
- Fun treat after school – Buying their favorite kind of candy, picking up a bakery cookie, or putting something out they’ve never tried before, is a fun way for them to return home from school and know you were thinking about them. Again, it doesn’t have to break the bank. These things usually cost under a dollar!
- Surprise them with a fun activity – Driving up to holiday lights around your neighborhood. Pulling up to a new ice cream place. These little surprises get them so excited, and they love feeling like you had a trick up your sleeve for them. There are many activities nearly free like Kids Skate Free. I surprised my kids with a day at the roller rink and it turned into a year-round thing!
- Be present – Instead of buying presents, BE present. My kids and I are constantly having conversations and connecting. If you really pay attention, and listen to their stories, you will be creating a life-long bond. The earlier you start this, the better it will be when they hit those uncommunicative teenage years. So, when they tell you something that happened during their school day, on the bus, or at sports or dance, make sure to listen. Ask about it the next day. They will know you care because you’re paying attention.
It can be hard to try and raise your kids without all the things their peers are getting. The little things will provide memories that will last a lifetime!