The Importance of Extended Family Relations

Family is one of the most important relationships a person can have in their life. Whether it’s nuclear or extended family relations, it is equally important to maintain and establish strong connections with them. As family day approaches, take this perfect opportunity to bond and spend quality time with your loved ones.

 
Extended family consists of people who are closely related. They may be living together or in the same vicinity. There’s an old saying: “It takes a village to raise a child.” In cases like these, it is especially true because extended relatives have a significant impact on healthy development in nurturing a child. They encourage a sense of belonging and a strong support system for parents to reinforce various aspects of discipline.

 
Growing up, children typically bond with their immediate family members first, such as parents and siblings. Your extended circle can also provide emotional and physical support if needed. Grandparents, aunties, uncles and cousins actively play significant roles in an infant’s life. It shows that the kid is loved even beyond their own immediate family. It will allow them to learn 3 specific core values: loyalty, responsibility and independency. There are many advantages sustaining this family dynamic. Extended family relations affect the outcome of a child’s behaviour and character. It transmits the principles and practices of modern society in a very saturated way. Therefore, it gives kids much more experience and exposure on different interest and ideas that are important lessons which parents may not be able to teach (e.g. collective learning of cooperative work, stability, cultural identity and sense of community).

 
Of course, to every advantage, there would be drawbacks. Arguments and conflicts are almost inevitable within extended families. Most disagreements may stem from when there is no mutual understanding among members. There are times when caring for a young one can lead to conflict. Grandparents may overstep their boundaries and make parents feel inadequate. But all is not lost, there are so many ways to restore peace between members. The formula is pretty simple once everyone is willing to be cooperative and understand that each has different opinions in doing certain things. This acknowledgement will defuse any issues that may arise. It all comes back to mutual respect for one another.

 
Today, families are easily spread across the country or moved to different parts of the world. But since the invention of modern technologies, we can cross those geographical barriers to connect with loved ones in just a matter of minutes. The resources are at our disposal, and we can take advantage of this to keep in touch with the people we adore most. Understanding this fundamental concept will help you realize the value of having family to provide wisdom.

Happy Family Day!

 

L. Paul | DBPC Blog

Celebrating Easter Sunday

While Good Friday is strictly a religious occasion, Easter Sunday is a celebration that people enjoy across cultures and religions.  In the modern interpretation of Easter, the resurrection of Christ takes a back seat to Easter eggs, chocolate and the ever present, Easter bunny who have become well recognized staples of the holiday in popular culture.  It can be interesting to look at the origins of today’s more commercial Easter and see how the holiday is still evolving.

Some may wonder how the bunny come into play when there is such a large focus on Christ and religion during the holiday.  Originally, the occasion was named for the goddess, “Eostre”, who represents fertility and spring.  At the time, this was a popular celebration for pagan religions, and Christians adopted and adapted many of their practices.  The hare was also a symbol of fertility for many pagan groups and Christians later used it to represent the rebirth of Christ.  Eggs were also seen as a symbol of life and are utilized for similar reasons.  The prominence of both these aspects in modern Easter celebrations is likely due to their more accessible family-friendly nature versus the more solemn crucifixion imagery.

The festivities on Easter Sunday come as a welcome change of pace to those observing a fast for Good Friday or the weeks before.  Many of us have fond memories of painting Easter eggs as children, and that trend has only grown over time with many parents and art enthusiasts now making their own elaborate toys and recipes.  It has become common for many to maintain “do-it-yourself” atmosphere when concocting new Easter festivities.  This not only helps to keep kids involved in actively celebrating the holiday, but it also provides a more lasting memory than simply receiving toys or chocolate.

Regardless of how you decide to celebrate the holiday, have a happy Easter!

Lance | DBPC Blog

What is Family?

Each one of us, no matter what race, profession or background is part of a family. Our culture tells us that it is the basic unit of society, comprised of parents who act as the heads, and children who are the centre and source of their inspiration and happiness. For some, family includes extended members such as grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins and other relatives, but whatever its composition, what is important is the role each person plays at home and in the community where they live.

Family is an integral part of a person’s development because it serves the critical purpose of shaping their individual character. It is the author of a person’s moral fabric since his/her values and principles are first learned within the family. Subsequently, this impacts the way we perceive things in society. Based on research, about 65% of our upbringing inspires what we will become someday, while only 35% are decided by environmental influences. Therefore, not all failures in the family should be blamed on family, there are external factors like friends and other associations that affect one’s personality and can either make or break a person’s development. Most likely, life in a happy home with strong guidance protect us from the uncertainties of life.

There is no such thing as an ideal and perfect family because one way or another, difficulties will come their way. If the foundation is solid enough then, even the most complex problems can be resolved. It is therefore necessary that anyone wanting to build a family, should be well prepared and ready to experience the ups and downs attached to it. The challenges should not be taken for granted. Marriage, often being the initial phase of establishing a family must be built on trust, respect and patience. Couples should not only be emotionally ready but spiritually, physically and financially prepared to enter into a different phase of their lives. It is a lifetime commitment that entails mutual sacrifice, but if managed well, the outcome is a pleasant “home sweet home”.

The term family can also be associated with other aspects of one’s life. The sports team, dance troupe, choir or other groups that a person is or was part of, is also an individual’s family in a way. Our interactions with them taught us the “how’s and why’s” of how to act, react, and interact with different personalities. At the same time it also allow us to create roles for ourselves to amassing knowledge, skills, and values that we would eventually bring to our dealings with the rest of the world.

 

M. Beltran | DBPC Blog

Holiday Party Ideas

For most companies Christmas party is a yearly tradition. It is a merry way of showing appreciation to your employees/co-workers. This can be quite a feat since workers are looking forward to having some time off especially during the holidays. This is some sort of a break and stress reliever after a year –long time with meeting deadlines and targets at work. Consequently, initiating a fun and memorable staff party is an event your teammates will definitely look forward to. You can adopt the following holiday party ideas that’ll guarantee fun and excitement:

Make it a family affair
If you change your guest list and switch it up from just inviting staff, include their families to your company Christmas party, it creates a fun affair. Extend party invitations to spouses, children or loved ones. This will be a perfect time to overindulge, let go, and mingle with co-workers and their family members, making it an extraordinary occasion.

Activities
Think of activities that’ll engage your employees. Initiate different games to make the celebration more interesting such as, Christmas Decorating Contest or comical awards that are achievement based. This will have an enjoyable impact, which will create an entertaining presentation for everybody to enjoy.

White Elephant Gift Exchange
Are you familiar with the “white elephant” gift exchange? This is completely different from the ordinary gift exchange that most companies tend to do which is called “Secret Santa”. The idea is for everyone to bring something that could be totally useless, from their basement or attics. This can be played in numerous methods, one way is by drawing numbers to see who goes first. While the gifts are still wrapped, have your guest pick a present and then let the opening begin. The goal is to choose wacky, funny or entertaining gifts. If you’re really uncertain, just pay a visit to your local thrift store.

Theme your office Christmas party
Tired of the cringe-worthy banners and mini-trees that you used every year, why not do something a bit different this season? To have a successful and spectacular themed party, you need to tap into your creative and imaginative side. Pick a theme that you and your colleagues will agree upon. There are tons of appropriate themes that are amusing and exhilarating. You can consider the following:

  • Winter Wonderland
  • Christmas Movie Marathon Party
  • Venetian Masquerade Ball
  • Beach Party

Once you and your employees/co-workers decide on a signature party, discuss what you want before performing the necessary preparations. Plan at least 2-3 months in advance to create a fun and exciting party that’ll not only entertain your co-workers this holiday season, but something that they’ll remember.

The point of having a successful Christmas party is to merge just the right amounts of pleasure and comfort. With these ideas, you can host a party your staff will look forward to attending rather than coming up with excuses to avoid the familiar.

 

Leslie | DBPC Blog

Ways to Celebrate the Holidays

Christmas has its origins in early 336 AD according to the Roman calendar. Mary and Joseph were blessed with a son, Jesus Christ – the son of God. Today, Christmas is one of the most universally celebrated holidays. This time of year, everyone gets into the spirit of gift giving and spending quality time with family, friends and loved ones. There are many ways of enjoying this holiday cheer. Whether it’s leaving some treats out for Santa or simply decorating the tree. People find many ways to celebrate. Some like to wake up early in the morning and go to church, light candles, sing Christmas songs and read stories.

Christmas is full of varied family traditions. Here are some ways to celebrate the holidays and enjoy or learn more about the holiday tradition.

Decorate the Christmas tree & House
This is a fun occasion for the family to go hunting for the perfect tree and then decorate it with lights and ornaments including cartoon characters, toys and coloured balls. Take the opportunity to brighten your house with luminous lights and hang Christmas pictures and mistletoe in doorways. One can also dangle Christmas bells on doors and set Christmas statuettes of Santa or Rudolph on tables. Families can also brighten up a computer desktop with Christmas Wallpapers and provide Christmas puzzles at home for kids. Traditions can vary based on region, for example, in southern India, Christians often put small oil burning clay lamps on the flat roofs of their homes to celebrate Christmas. Christians in China use paper lanterns to decorate their Christmas trees and houses.

Christmas Caroling
Go caroling with your friends, family or in a group of others instead of going alone. Rehearse together and gather more people make the songs more powerful. Some can also add instrumentals to boost the performance. You can go together door to door and sing for neighbors. Caroling is also encouraged in churches in some areas.

Gifts Giving & Family Gatherings
Invite friends and family for a dinner or arrange a potluck and keep some traditional food like mince pies, chestnuts, plum pudding, roast goose, mulled wine or from scratch eggnog. Customize Christmas cards and calendars and send to your friends and family. When giving presents to family and friends, be creative and leave them in different places! Try putting them in shoes, boots, stockings or go for a more traditional place under the Christmas tree. Presents are opened on different days around the world as well. In Holland, Kids open it on St. Nicholas’ Eve on December 5. In Belgium, Germany Czech Republic and some other European countries open on 6th December. Children in the UK, USA, Canada and many other countries open their presents in the morning with their family together on Christmas Day – December 25th. The latest presents are opened on January 6th which is known as Epiphany celebrated in Spain and Mexico. One popular way of giving presents in groups such as clubs, school classes and workplaces is to have a ‘Secret Santa’. This is where you pull the name of a random peer or co-worker out of a container and then buy a present for them. When the presents are given out (often at a Christmas party) each person is given their present but they will have no idea which person in the group bought it for them!

Share Candy Canes
Distributing Candy canes to friends and family is a popular Christmas tradition. It is the most popular of all the usual Christmas treats. There are several stories behind the origin of the Candy Cane’s shape. One explanation is that it represents the J in Jesus’ name. The other explanation is that it looks like a shepherd’s crook to keep the sheep from wandering away from the flock. The Bible says that, “The Lord is my shepherd” in keeping us safe. The candy cane’s white color is also a symbol of purity, and the three red stripes represent the blood of Christ. Thus, simply eating a Candy Cane can help remind us about the true meaning of Christmas.

Santa Claus
Some people like to attend the Santa Parade to show their festive spirit and take in some holiday cheer! Others might choose to take their children to see Santa Claus – the merry old man in the red suit that we all know and love – in department stores, shopping malls or even parties. Kids get to tell Santa their wish list, and parents can use the experience to create some positive, long-lasting family memories.

May your Christmas be full of fun, cheer and wonder! Merry Christmas!

 

U. Lakhia | DBPC Blog

Spending for the Holidays / Making a Budget

The season to be jolly can very easily turn in to the season to be sorry for many of us, especially if you spend unwisely without budgeting your Christmas shopping. Luckily, there are a few tips and tricks that can help reduce stress and spending for the holidays – the most wonderful time of the year.

  1. Create a Budget
    If you haven’t already, do yourself a huge favor and create a budget for your Christmas shopping before you hit the mall or online stores. The simplest method of budgeting is to compile a list of all the people that you need to buy presents for and decide how much you are willing to spend on each person. Creating a budget will help you maintain better control over your cash or credit and will ensure that you do not fall victim to the temptation of impulse purchases, keeping you debt-free. Who likes owing money anyway? Especially right after the New Year kicks off?
  2. Shop Earlier & Save Online
    No matter how much time we think we have, Christmas can sneak up on us. Consumers often find that their spending increases when shopping for gifts a week before Christmas. In order to keep your costs aligned with your budget, it is smart to keep an eye out for online deals and price drops early on and buy all your presents in advance to avoid disappointment. Last minute shopping often results in consumers spending way more than they initially planned to. This is because the gifts they wanted to purchase are sold out by then, leaving consumers with no other option but to buy the more expensive product. It is a lot less stressful to shop a couple weeks or at least a month prior to Christmas. Not only does this allow you to avoid crazy shopping environments, long line ups, and premium prices, but shopping earlier also guarantees that all the gifts you want are in stock. Most importantly, getting your Christmas shopping out of the way creates an opportunity for you to spend more quality time with your family and loved ones, which is what the holidays are all about!
  3. Use Cash or Debit
    There are definitely some benefits that shopping with credit offers, such as convenience and consumer protection. At the same time, however, there are several risks involved with swiping your credit card to make purchases over the holidays. It is very easy to get caught up in the Christmas frenzy and spend beyond your means by abusing your credit card; however, if you are not disciplined about how you use your credit card, you may end up in severe financial trouble and accumulate debt that could take a while to pay off or even hurt your credit score. Instead, using cash or debit when shopping for presents will allow you to limit your spending, because you will only use the money you have access to at the time.
  4. Secret Santa
    Decide whether you need to get every one of your family members, friends, or work colleagues a gift. In order to cut Christmas shopping costs and still make sure that everyone receives a present, suggest a Secret Santa gift exchange. This way everyone in your family and among your friends or co-workers is assigned only one person to purchase a gift for with a spending limit that they must stick to.

 

Salman Allidina | DBPC Blog