I stumbled upon these wonderful ideas from Smartmom's blog
and thought I would pass some of my favourites along here on this blog....
Smart Mom's Ways to help kids feel special
"Leave "secret messages" in surprise places where you know your kids will find them. Things like "I love you!" or "You're special to me!" left inside a favorite book, in the pocket of a coat, in a lunchbox..."
"Write a special message in birthday cards - maybe a brief anecdote, a memory, something to read and re-read later, when your kids are grown up. (ahh....this is where our Little Milestones come in!)"
"Celebrate your child's half-birthday with half a cake, napkins cut in half, the altered song 'Half-y Birthday""
"Once a month, have "Jane or John Day" - a day that's all about your child. Jane/John gets to pick the day's activities, decide the 'rules' for the day, choose the food, etc. This is especially good when theres more than one child. EACH child gets a special day and it not only makes the child being celebrated feel good, it helps the siblings learn to be happy for others. "
"Surprise your child at school and go on an unplanned adventure"
"When you go shopping, if your child did a really good job (not whining or fussing), make sure to stop after you check out and tell your child what he/she did right, say you appreciate the good behavior, are proud of him/her and then give a hug (maybe get a little treat afterward)"
"Gather things so your child can feel like a useful member of the family--child-size tools like mop, broom, rake etc, and then your child can help you while you work. Praise him/her for helping!"
"Talk to your spouse when your child has done something you were really happy about - when they are within earshot and they can hear the praise "indirectly""