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Why I have my kids create holiday wish lists for needy children

Danielle Smith is a former award-winning television news anchor and reporter turned digital correspondent, host, spokesperson, media trainer, lover of all things video and public s

​I can feel it. The temperatures start to dip and it instantly feels like the holidays are right around the corner.

In our home, that means I'm giddy. (OK... fine... I'm not giddy about the cold, but I DO love the holidays.) I love the spirit, the traditions, the food, the time with family and the opportunity to give. From the time my small people were very small, we've always made acts of kindness an active and beautiful part of our season.

I've always known that my kids don't do as I say, they do as I do, so it is important that they see me and my husband giving, helping others, providing toys, food and as much holiday cheer as we can for other families. Much as my mom always did with me, my goal has been to pass that spirit along.

While my kids actively create "holiday wish lists" as many children do, we make sure to incorporate "wishes" for other children and families as well. We hope this season, as we have in the past, we'll be able to provide a "full holiday experience" for a family, the kind they imagine when they close their eyes.

I'm grateful there are organizations like The Salvation Army that make giving not only such an extraordinary priority, but they create the ease of opportunity for people who want to give. The Red Kettles are so recognizable, and they make giving each year so easy; whether you have a lot or a little that you can offer, everything you do makes an impact. And the littlest among us are watching.

This year, my #RedKettleReason for giving? My sweet small people. They are growing to be kind, generous, bigger people and I want that to continue.

Join the spirit of giving this season; take a look at this video and share your #RedKettleReason.

Disclosure: This post is part of collaboration between The Salvation Army and SheKnows.

Photo credit: Jamie Grill/ Iconica/Getty Images

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