2013: A new year. If you are like most people, you think of a new year as a fresh start, a new beginning, a chance to start over. And it is a great opportunity to wipe the slate clean and start fresh. But this year seems different, harder to just start fresh, because it is harder this year to forget about recent events in 2012 that carry over into 2013.
The incident in Newtown, Connecticut will not be forgotten any time soon, but their courage to pick themselves up and attempt normalcy is to be admired. The other event, Hurricane Sandy will effect us for years to come, as we rebuild the Jersey Shore and hopefully make it even better than what it was. These events have impacted our lives in many ways, so as we move forward in 2013 there are some ways we can make a difference and take this as an opportunity to teach our children the importance of making a difference as well.
If your house looks like a toy store after the holidays, it is a great time to donate toys that they have outgrown or no longer play with. Let them get involved by letting them know there are children that would love to play with those toys that they once loved to play with.
The children at my school donated enough toys for over 100 children for the holidays & most helped shop for the toys and their parents explained how excited the kids were to give a present to a little boy or girl, a complete stranger. It is also a great time of year to donate coats or clothes that your children have out grown. And again have the kids help bag the clothes that they are donating and explain to them that their are kids like them that could really use the things that don't fit them anymore.
Food pantries are in desperate need of donations as well. People are very generous during the holiday season and that is great! But there are people still in need, still hungry. So there are stores that have can- can sales, you can pick up an extra can or two, have your kids pick out what kind of soup or canned vegetable to donate. They will be excited that they are a part of it.
More importantly, you're helping your child develop compassion for other people. And if you accomplish that this year, your have made an incredible difference for 2013 and for years to come.