Growing up #GenHerous

One of my favourite parts of Christmas as a kid was our advent calendar. My mom would sit down at the beginning of December and write out all of the activities that we would get up to in the lead-up to Christmas. We did all sorts of things like go public skating or have $5 Co-op nights - this involved picking anything you wanted for dinner, for $5. My favourite activity was Dairy Queen night. On Dairy Queen night we got to choose a name from their tree, go shopping for a gift and finish it all off with a Blizzard. I don't know if that's where my love of giving started but it couldn't have hurt.
I love giving back - there is little I find more joyful than contributing, whether financially, with time or energy, to a good cause.

Last week I was tagged in this article by my sweet friend. The article reminded me of our Dairy Queen night from my childhood, of the joy and love experienced in choosing a gift for a child that otherwise might not receive one. Parenting comes with a whole world of worries and wants for your children - mostly - I just want my fellas to grow up to be good people. I want them to contribute positively to society and do good for those around them. I hope they will see their role in the success of the community and truly believe that we are better together.

The article got me thinking about how I could pass along this love of giving and of contributing to my boys. One of their favourite places is Vivo - yes, I do happen to work here and thus, by default, they spend a lot of time there. They love playing basketball in the gyms, turning somersaults on the mats and chatting to all of their friends who work and play at Vivo. Even on my days off, they ask to go in!

Vivo is currently raising money for their Everybody Plays program - this program allows families in need access to play - they receive a discounted rate for a pass that they would otherwise not be able to afford. Y'all know how I feel about the importance of play - naturally, this is something that speaks to me - and that I am happy to contribute to. I started talking to my boys about it a couple of weeks ago, explaining how not all families can go to Vivo whenever they want to. I'll be honest, this concept was mostly lost on my youngest, he's just three and didn't quite understand. However, knowing that another child could come and experience this was enough to hook my oldest, who excitedly made a donation.

It's just a little, but it's a start. Raising the next generation matters. Their values, practices and beliefs will shape the future. Raising that next generation to be a healthy one is more than play. It's more than going outside, playing sports or eating healthy. Living a healthy lifestyle, to me, includes lifting others when you can. It includes helping your neighbour, looking out for one another, helping the next one in line.

I hope to do everything I can to ensure I am helping to raise a healthier generation - Gen H. A generation of caring, compassionate and conscious humans that care for one another and the collective well being.

- lovefrommaria


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