In our family, we celebrate all of the Jewish and Christian holidays, which makes for a busy and gift-filled time of year. Add to that my kid's birthday in the midst, and the amount of stuff can make us all feel a bit queasy.
We’ve tried to find some remedies to the excess. We no longer exchange gifts with any adults in our families, choosing instead to take turns picking a favourite charity, and then making a combined large donation. He or she who chooses also gets the tax receipt.
The trickier part is how to impress upon our very fortunate children the importance of sharing our many blessings. Typically we donate one nightly gift of Chanukah (the tradition is to have a small gift for each of the eight nights of Chanukah), and go to the grocery store for formula, peanut butter, and other staples. Then we walk them over to the local fire department where not only do the kids feel good about their donation, they also get to check out the fire department, which is never a bad thing.
This year we’ll also be talking about Giving Tuesday. You’ve probably heard about Black Friday
and Cyber Monday—the days following U.S. Thanksgiving where huge deals and tons of shopping are to be had. In response, some smart and good people have come up with Giving Tuesday. The idea is to set aside a little of your holiday shopping budget to make a difference in someone else’s life. Here’s a great video
There are so many ways to make a charitable giving a part of your holiday season. To make it extra easy, check out Canada Helps
. Through this organization, anyone can donate online to any registered Canadian charity. Think of it as one-stop charitable shopping.
Wishing you a happy Giving Tuesday!