Milestone Markers; planning way ahead
For most of us, a tradition is something that is passed down, maybe created by change and can be something that "just happens". It is never too early to think about starting another tradition. We've put together a list of a few traditions to start now for your young child that will make for incredible graduation gifts way down the road.
Write it down: Choose a sentimental children's book (“Oh The Places You Will Go” by Dr. Seuss and “Where The Sidewalk Ends” by Shel Silverstein are both incredible options). Each year ask your child's teacher to write them a note-perhaps their hopes for them, what they see them accomplishing, even their favourite memory from the past school year. They'll cherish looking back on the kind words of those who shaped their educational journey.
One Child's Treasure: Kids have a knack for finding 'treasures' and those treasures have a way of finding their way into the bottom of backpacks, car floors, and the washing machine. Collect them in a jar, or two. The ensemble of colourful trinkets, shiny rocks, buttons and notes passed in class will feel like a grand cache when presented on commencement day.
An Artists Portfolio: Kids bring home A LOT of artwork over the years, and while as parents we love every single masterpiece, unless your home is housing an industrial refrigerator there is just not enough space to display them all. Instead have them easily turned into a book using one of the many photo product companies that can be found online (Shutterfly, Artkive, and Plum Print to name a few). Create a single book of their finest from over the years, or if you're feeling ambitious, a book filled with work from each division or even each grade.
Image via Plum Print
Kids Say The Darndest Things: Kids are hilarious. It's true. What's funnier is that they have no idea that they are funny. Keep track of those quirky, silly, insightful, and frankly sometimes out there thoughts that your child will spring on you. Start a note section on your phone, or go old school and keep a notepad on you. When the time comes, and it will, that your child makes you chuckle or think twice-write it down with a date and age stamp. Later you can compile them all into a book or email to share a version of your young child with their older self.
Ask The "Tough" Questions: Much like our last suggestion this idea only takes some good note-taking skills. Come up with a list of questions to ask your child each year around the same time, might we suggest the first day of school as your marker, and add their answers to the same book each time. It could be as simple as they're favourite colour, or what they want to be when they grow up. Or as in-depth as you would like to go. Down the road, your child will be able to see just how far they've come and just how much they've grown.
It's never too early to start a new tradition.