Love, Cards, and Goldfish
Children love to give and receive love. They understand a simple truth—that loves makes people happy. In their minds, love makes them happy and they like to be happy; therefore love must make other people happy too. Children enjoy making others happy.
One night, I was putting my children to sleep. My son asked me to cuddle with him for a “just a few minutes”. After a moment of quiet, he asked, “Do fish go to Heaven?”
I answered that Heaven is a place where everything that we love will be, so if you had a fish that was special to you, it would probably be in Heaven. Then I asked him what will be the best part about Heaven.
Without hesitating at all, he said, “Jesus.”
“What is the best part about Jesus?” I then asked.
Again, he had the answer right away: “Love!”
“And what’s the best part about love?”
This time he thought for a moment before he said, “Giving.”
For a three-year-old, I thought that he had grasped the concept of love pretty well. It is giving.
Because giving and receiving things make children happy, many children have a strong desire to give things to others as well, from hugs, kisses and cuddles, to “second-hand” items wrapped in a blanket or newspaper.
Every now and again, one of my kids will get in a gift-giving mood and will look through everything they have, wrapping up item after item and finding someone to give it to. Once my daughter wrapped up my hairclip and gave it to me.
“Thank you,” I said whole-heartedly “but it’s already mine.”
She stopped for a minute, and then said, “I wrapped it up for you though.” Something about wrapping things just makes it all that much more special.
Kids often enjoy making “cards” for people. My daughter will sometimes ask for a piece of paper, and within half an hour, she will have produced a colorful and unique picture with a note that usually says something like, “I love you. I hope you have a nice day. Form Jessica. To Mommy and Daddy.” It might have a few spelling errors, but it’s made with love; what can be better than that?
At any sort of occasion, a friend’s birthday, etc. she will ask if she can make a card.
Cards are simple and make wonderful gifts from children. A little bit of creativeness and help on the part of a parent can make a card into a memorable and lasting gift for the recipient. It can also bring a parent and child together with a meaningful project, and garner creativity in the child.
It will be an unforgettable experience, and who knows what could potentially come of it? I know an artistic family in which each child contributes something to the designing of all their cards: thank you cards, greeting cards, and Christmas cards. They save money, and I’m sure those who are on the receiving end feel more touched with an artfully handmade card than with a last-minute store-bought card quickly signed, “Much love from all of us”.
If you have a free evening and are about to sit your kids down in front of the TV so you can get a few moments to yourself (or to finish up the laundry and pay your bills), stop and reconsider. Give just half an hour of your time to your child. Ask your child if there is anyone they know of who is not feeling well, or whose birthday is coming up, and work with them to design a card. They will be thrilled at the chance to do something for someone else, and something with their parents. The card might not last forever, but the memories created together will last always.
Posted on June 4, 2011, in Activities, Education and tagged cards, children, crafts with children, education, gift giving, gifts, giving, home made, Jesus, love, parenting, time with children. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.