I read an article recently about how one should not throw lavish large parties for kids’ birthdays.
Upon reflection, there is wisdom in that, for it certainly (however unintentionally) creates a sense of entitlement in kids and a sense that joy and pride comes from owning nice things (the ‘sizeable’ presents that other parents feel obliged to purchase when invited to such parties) and being elevated to being such a centre of attention that day. (You can imagine a four year old getting used to this annual session and thinking ‘yes bring your oblations unto me, ye mere mortals and hired photographer gathered to adore me’.)
When I saw these photos, taken on children’s day by a Sunday school teacher, it reminded me again what simple joy is.
Being outdoors with your friends, playing simple games, just running around, settling down for a picnic…
Just allowing children to be children.
And here, delighting in a butterfly that decided to rest on one’s hand.
Few things are more nourishing to soul and spirit than sunshine and fresh air.
So perhaps, this holidays, let’s factor in more outdoor time, and let our children just be children, to enjoy things and activities that are less material, as well as less likely to entrench a spirit of consumerism and entitlement in them.