If you’ve braved the malls in search of holiday gifts, you’ve no doubt heard a familiar chorus amid the piped-in Christmas carols and boisterous crowds: “Gimme this.” “Get me that.” “I want it now!”

With today’s unrelenting focus on gifts around the holiday season, greed can get the best of children, says Ken Haller, MD, an associate professor of pediatrics at Saint Louis University. Parents need to set realistic expectations for their kids as early as possible.
 
You can battle the gimmes by focusing on those who are in need, he says. Instill the spirit of giving by allowing your kids to purchase a toy for a child whose family can’t afford one or participating in a canned food drive.
 
Of course, make sure your kids see you giving—and not just during the holiday season. Some of the organizations and charities that support the principles of organic living and environmental awareness include:

If you’d like to suggest other charities, please add a comment at this end of this blog post.