Happy family! Mother and child girl on a winter walk in nature.

Healthy Holiday Habits

Hey families! Welcome back to Broc’s Blog! As winter is fast approaching, are you prepared for the hustle and bustle of the holidays? I am here to guide you through the twists and turns of some healthy holiday habits.

Hand Washing

Washing or sanitizing your hands is the best way to prevent the spread of germs. Use soap and running water to scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds, or the time it takes to sing through the Happy Birthday song twice. Reminding children to do this is easier when you share my handwashing coloring page with them. Hang their finished product on the kitchen refrigerator or the bathroom wall for the perfect daily reminder to keep those hands clean.

Dress In Layers

Living in New England comes with brisk mornings that could potentially warm up on a good day. Wear a t-shirt with a sweater or hoodie to regulate your body temperature as the outside temperatures change. As we inch closer to winter, add on those layers with jackets, hats, scarves, mittens, and boots! Dress warm, especially if you want to join me in Building a Snowperson for a fun family activity!

Joyful Eating

Some young children may prefer simple foods like chicken fingers and french fries, and you may find that your child refuses the holiday meal placed before them. Make meals fun for your children by getting them involved. When kids help prepare a meal, they are more likely to eat it. Below are a few kid-friendly meal options for you to make with your children. Feel free to use these recipes for whatever holiday you celebrate!

If you make a turkey, use any leftovers with this Turkey 5 Ways Flyer, and your kids will gobble it all up with no waste!

Enjoy any of the above options with a Cranberry Seltzer Spritz. To make this, mix 4 ounces of cranberry juice with 4 ounces of cranberry lime seltzer. If you choose to make some traditional holiday recipes, use this My Plate Holiday Makeover Flyer for some delicious healthy alternatives to commonly consumed holiday foods. More celebratory recipes can be found here. Make sure to find some tasty broccoli recipes! Wink, wink.

Drink Water

During the busy winter months, it is important to keep hydrated. You may know that adults should try to drink 8 cups of water, or 64 ounces, daily. However, amounts vary for children based on age. The chart below shows the recommended daily water intake from the National Academy of Medicine.

AgeDaily Adequate Intake
1-3 years4 cups, or 32 ounces
4-8 years5 cups, or 40 ounces
9-13 years7-8 cups, or 56-64 ounces
14-18 years8-11 cups, or 64-88 ounces

Other ways for children to stay hydrated include eating fruits or vegetables like watermelon, oranges, grapes, or cucumbers.

Staying Active

Children need at least 60 minutes of physical activity a day. Make it fun with these new ways to get moving featuring me, Broc! Each of these activities have instructions provided and are downloadable. They are easy to follow and are a fun twist on some classic games. So get moving!

More activities and information can be found by clicking on the link here.

Promote Regular Bedtime

School, sports, meetings, and celebrations can easily knock us off our sleep-track this month. Keeping a consistent sleep routine will allow your children to maintain focus, a positive attitude, and a strong body. This chart shows the recommended hours of sleep for children by age from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

AgeHours for Sleep
Infants (1-12 months)12-16 hours
Toddlers (12-24 months)11-14 hours
Preschoolers (3-5 years)10-13 hours
School-Age (6-12 years)9-12 hours
Teenagers (13-18 years)8-10 hours

Remember, you can find my reading lists here for bedtime stories that might help as well! 

Wishing you a safe and healthy holiday season! Love, Broc

Other Resources

Children’s Books:

  • Infants through toddlers:
    • Winter Babies, by Kathryne O. Golbraith, 2018, ages 0-3 years.
  • Preschoolers+:
    • You Are Healthy, by Todd Snow, 2008, ages 3-8 years.
    • Winter’s Gifts: An Indigenous Celebration of Nature, by Kaitlyn B. Curtis, 2023, ages 3-7 years.
  • School-agers:
    • A Winter Treasure of Recipes, Craft, and Wisdom, by Angela Ferraro-Fanning, 2022, ages 5-8 years.
  • All Ages:
    • What’s a Season? Winter, by Kelly Grettler, 2018, ages Infant – 10 years (mostly wordless book).

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