We’re comfortable knowing we’ll break a few of our hard-and-fast parenting rules at some point over the holidays (yes, those are our kids enjoying gingerbread cookies before breakfast and yes, those same kids will be granted extended screen-time to keep us all sane during the long drive to Nana’s house). However, when it comes to the proper conduct of our children—and ourselves—we have a few golden rules we adhere to without fail this time of year.
Do: Be realistic
Unless you’ve been channeling Emily Post for months, few kids will correctly remember a long list of well-mannered behaviours. Instead, focus on what matters most to you. Remind kids to offer handshakes when guests arrive, always say ‘thank you’ for any gift (even when it’s not what they wanted), look people in the eye when speaking to them, and share toys with visiting friends and family.
Don’t: Sabotage the season
We know our kids. Some toddlers can stay up until midnight and fare well; some teens are tormented by the idea of being offline for over five minutes. Don’t fill your calendars to the point where everyone gets extended way beyond their comfort zones. Allow for periods of sleeping in, checking in and checking out—you’ll be cheered by how agreeable everyone is.
We’ve got 6 more pro tips for making it through the holidays with grace. We know you’ll thank us.
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