Magazine article U.S. Catholic

Warm Up Your New Year

Magazine article U.S. Catholic

Warm Up Your New Year

Article excerpt

If 2014 was a bit rocky for your family, the long New Year's weekend might be just what you need to get back on track. Find a cozy time and talk as a family about some things you'd like to do better in 2015. Consider having a calendar out, so you can write down any good ideas that come up. Pour some hot cocoa or steaming cups of cider--studies show that hot liquids make us feel warmer and more generous toward others.

Resolve to be present. Parents are the masters of multitasking. We can answer e-mails while making dinner, dress for work while signing permission slips, help with homework while folding laundry. Although some multitasking is necessary, too much can get in the way of being present to each other.

Maureen, mother of five, believes that if she could slow down, her children would better understand her love for them. "I often find myself rushing through each day without taking the time to really look into the eyes of each of my children. I fear that the never-ending task lists and nonstop errands seem top priority to my children," she says. "My resolution for the new year is to stop what I am doing when my children speak to me and look into their eyes while they ask me their questions, tell me their excitements, or simply ask, 'What's for dinner?' My hope is that my children will more easily feel the warmth and love for them that I carry in my heart."

Carol, mother of four, is on the same track. "When a child asks me to play a game, my resolution is to answer yes instead of 'Not right now.' The days of my kids wanting to play a game with me are numbered--why do I throw those opportunities away?"

Resolve to bring the family together. As children get older, they often retreat to their room, the basement, or another place where the family doesn't gather. …

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