I don’t know about you but my kids are in recovery mode from the endless sugary treats, more gifts than they know what to do with, lack of schedule, lack of sleep and a the flu thrown in the mix. I asked my mom for 5 simple holiday recovery tips for the family.
1. Reset your routines ASAP. This is especially important because routines are erased or at least modified for most children during the holiday season. It will take effort for everyone to gear up for those early morning wake up calls when school begins.
2. Plan healthy meals together. Your planning, with input from your children, should be for at least the next three to four days. Be sure to include snacks in your meal planning. Follow precise rules: the meals must be yummy with preparation requiring everyone’s help and the meals must be healthy. Exclude the sugary and salty foods that dominated the ongoing holiday feasts.
3. Focus on sleep. The holidays disrupt sleep routines because children are allowed to stay up later; experience travel across time zones; and, are often displaced from their own bedrooms for visiting relatives. Let your children know what time they are expected to begin preparing for bed and the time that lights are out and sleep is in. Allow ample time for bedtime preparation as your children adjust to resetting their routines. Reading books is still one of the best ways to help children unwind and prepare for sleep.
4. Encourage thankful behaviors. The holiday season provided your children with gifts, treats, special events, and intensive activities. Talk about the importance of being thankful and expressing their thankfulness. Help them think about ways to express their gratefulness for their family, community, and gifts. Photos and thank you notes remain simple and valuable ways to express gratitude.
5. Avoid recriminations. Adults create the holiday frenzy by hyping up the “Be Good and You’ll Get…” campaign. Your children responded accordingly and they are functioning with less sleep, too much sugar, and an abundance of gifts you either bought or allowed them to receive. Tolerance is definitely needed as you reset their routines, provide healthy meals, focus on their sleep, and encourage their thankful behaviors.
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