Fredericksburg Parent

January 2016

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www.FredParent.NET • 11 Sponsored by Minnieland Transitioning from a surprise-filled, care- free holiday break to the ho-hum back-to- school routine is hard for kids--and parents. Incorporate small playful family rituals and you can help ease the transition, brighten glum faces and bring your family closer together. Last year, we introduced you to Pouches Community Corner. Our beloved mascot wanted to find a way to highlight all of the great work being done in the Fredericksburg and surrounding communities while also introducing each organization to you - our readers. Each month spotlighted a different non-profit organization and detailed their work and what you could do to help. Pouches Community Corner was able to provide information on organizations dealing with pediatric cancer, feeding the homeless and hungry, healthy eating habits for children, day support programs for adults with intellectual disabilities, and resources for parents and fami- lies. This year we are doing it again! Check back here each month or online to find out more about those in our community who serve and how you can become a part of it! If your organization is interested in being spotlighted, please email Day after holiday blahs. After all of the anticipation and excitement surrounding the holidays, the next day can seem anti-climatic. Exchange books with each other on the day after the celebrations end. These are gifts that often get overlooked during the holiday shuffle. Cozy up and take turns reading to each other. Cook together. Hold a family cooking competition. Team up and challenge each other to come up with a part of the dinnertime menu using holiday leftovers. Stipulate what three foods have to be included in the food creation. Whoever your family declares the winner gets to choose dessert that night. Host a hot chocolate party. Invite your kids and their friends to come in from the cold and warm up with hot chocolate. Create a buffet table featuring candy canes, marshmallows, candy sprinkles and whipped cream. Craft an art party. Is your crew feeling moody on the eve of a manic Monday? Turn a gloomy winter afternoon into a colorful art party with your family. Stock up on art suppli es like paint, textured watercolor paper, watercolors, glitter, colorful duct tape, beads, buttons, glue and paintbrushes. Challenge each other to come up with a creative work of art using only the materials available. Build in transition time. Back from vacation? Rather than jumping right back into the rou- tine, build in a couple of days of "wind-down" time after you return home. Try starting a project before you leave that your kids will look forward to return to when they come home, like a game left in limbo, a jigsaw puzzle, model air- plane or craft project. Review the holiday. Gather the photos you took during your vaca- tion and help your kids create a digital slideshow set to music or a photo book to share with family and friends. Reflect on the best parts of your family get-away. Pouches' community corner WRITTEN BY CHRISTA MELNYK HINES Ways to Turn Post-holiday BLahs into family FuN 8 In a society where we're pulled in multiple directions, leisurely hanging out together can cost very little. The return on your investment of time will pay dividends down the road, resulting in a happier, more connected family. Plan an outing. Start the new year off right by getting active with your fam- ily. Go rollerskating, sledding or iceskating. Head to the bowling alley or jump around on trampolines at a local jump zone. Set intentions. On the first day back to school, mark the day with a special celebration. Light a candle on a "back-to-school" cupcake, muffin or cin- namon roll. Encourage your child to make a wish for the second half of the school year before blowing out the candle. Pouches' community corner

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