giving back

Service: 10 Ways to Pay It Forward as a Family

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Most parents have a desire to instill in their child a sense of nurturing, empathy, and care for others. We want to teach our kids to "pay it forward" and love one another. Volunteering of our time, money, or abilities is a great way to teach our children these traits. When you lead by example, it will make an even stronger impact. Performing service for others is a great way to "pay it forward".

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Family Service Ideas—10 Ways to Pay It Forward

  1. Give blessing bags to the homeless: Simply fill a 1-gallon plastic zip bag with items such as granola bars, a bottle of water, a pocket Bible, a travel toothbrush and toothpaste, chapstick, deodorant, etc.
  2. Visit the local senior center: Bring flowers, play games, and have fun! Consider "adopting" a grandparent and make regular visits to someone who may not have family nearby.
  3. Volunteer at a pet adoption site.
  4. Arrange a neighborhood yard sale for charity. Bonus: Sell lemonade for extra donations.
  5. Pick up trash at your local park.
  6. Leave coloring books and crayons in the waiting area of the doctor, car repair center, etc.
  7. Visit the local hospital and read to the children who are patients.
  8. Donate to a food bank.
  9. Donate books to the library.
  10. Love your local heroesMake a big plate of cookies or a home cooked meal, then visit the local fire station and let the fire fighters know how much you appreciate their service. In most cases, the kids will even have a chance to check out the fire engine and maybe even slide down the pole!

Try out different opportunities until you find something that works well for your family. Consider trying a new activity each month, and get your friends involved.

What other opportunities would you add to the list? What does your family do to "pay it forward"?

5c86a00f-00fc-422f-9236-b09e42332000_zps3a02bf10 Kirsten Thompson is the incredibly witty and often sarcastic voice behind One Tough Mother, where she shares fabulous crafts, home decor projects, and organization tips and tricks, as well as the occasional piece of her mind.  Kirsten lives in her happy place where glitter and washi tape adorn every crevice, everyone has tattoos, and sweet tea flows like water.  It's a fun little place, and you can join her on her crafty journeys and adventures in raising a tween daughter on her blog, One Tough Mother.  Kirsten also likes to play on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

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