Gift your child a hobby

Gift your child a hobby

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Since when N was a child looking out for rainbows in oil spills , or watching butterflies and picking flowers, she has had a special connect with nature. She’s more outdoorsy than the rest of us and is always ready for a walk.

I might grudge the times she has dragged me out of the bed on a weekend but thanks to her I do step out more often. Once the waking up is out of the way, mornings are my favourite time of the day.

A few years back she started clicking pictures on my phone. I used one of her’s for this post and that had her thrilled. Finally, for her eleventh birthday this year, we gifted her a camera. It’s the smallest most inexpensive one we could find, but it has proved to be  the best gift we could have given her. She carries it along everywhere and has been clicking everything in sight. We are hoping this is beginning of a lifelong affair with pictures.

With stress levels what they are, a hobby is important for children as well as adults. Click To Tweet

When we were kids we had plenty of spare time and that gave us the luxury of trying out and picking up hobbies on our own. ‘What is your hobby?’ used to be such a common conversation starter whether we were meeting someone for the first time or at job interviews. I don’t hear it so much any longer.

Oh the children now are way more accomplished and are doing more things than we ever did. But the important thing is – are they doing it for fun or is it just another task? Are they doing it for no reward? For no marks or medals? Simply for the pleasure it gives them without the thought of excelling at it? Are they doing it even though they may not be super good at it? Expertise might follow, of course, but it is no pre-condition for having a hobby.

That is what makes our task as parents that much harder. Did you know that people with no hobbies are more prone to ailments such as depression? Doctors ‘prescribe’ cultivating a hobby for them. And rightly so. Nothing is more relaxing than indulging in something purely for the fun of it. Here are a few more reasons why everyone should have a hobby.

The best bit is, it starts paying off even when the kids are small and goes on to yield richer dividends as they grow.

That is why I am glad N has taken to her camera. Meanwhile, she has decided she should be paid if and when I use her pictures. Yeah she’s already turning her hobby into a profession and we’ve been bargaining about the rates. This could well be the most expensive post on the blog, since I am including some of her pictures. Here they are:

Also  she has been brainstorming names her photography ‘company’ more or less settling on Peacock Pictures :-). What do you think of it?

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22 Replies to “Gift your child a hobby”

  1. Those are some lovely clicks and you must certainly pay her the passion cum professional fees. It’s wonderful that N has found her passion and calling too. Good luck to her as she pursues her hobby!

    1. Thanks Shipa. I’m not sure this is her calling just yet. I’m sure she’ll change her mind a hundred times before she settles on something but I’m glad she has this to fill her leisure hours.

  2. Sweet! Those are some lovely pictures. I guess, kids hardly have hobbies because parents are keeping them occupied with so many classes and of course, they have their gadgets. But I must say that I still see a lot of kids read. Both my children are readers and so are many other kids that I know. The younger son loves to help his dad with the garden. He knows so much about bugs and effective organic ways to kill them. Being fearless, he helps his dad deworm the plants. Elder son is more geeky. He spends all his time in reading and quizzing. It’s the adults who hardly have any decent hobbies. So many are just caught in the rut of life and spend all their spare time on WhatsApp.

    1. Reading is a great hobby to have. I love that your younger one is into gardening. My father was a lot into gardening. I remember him telling us about rose grafting and budding and I still remember it all. And also photography, although it was an expensive hobby back then. Before we blame the children, we need to look at ourselves too. How many of us have hobbies? And how many of us care to share them with the children?

  3. Such an adorable post, this 🙂 And I like the businesswoman in her already 😀 No freebies, momma!

    Can’t agree more about the hobby bit. For Gy it’s reading. She’s lost in a world of her own if it comes to books. Oh and she can play basketball endlessly! It’s tiring but good for her. Not having any gadgets whatsoever has really helped her out.

    Do tell N the pictures are lovely. And I am glad I can ask her ‘what is your hobby?’ when we meet. Note I say ‘when’, not ‘if’. Hope springs eternal 🙂

    1. Ha ha.. I like the ‘when’ too. Of course we will meet. Just needs a little bit of planning, that’s all.
      It is heartening to see a lot of youngsters taking to reading – I think a result of reader parents. She sounds like me, when I was a kid. I enjoy basketball too, even though I might take some ten turns to score a basket!
      N is pretty thrilled with the attention.

  4. You tell her that when she opens a company, I’ll be her customer. So lovely her pictures are. And it is so true that these days children don’t seem to have a hobby which scares me. Really does and I agree about people without hobbies being prone to ailments. Something all parents these days need to think about. The other day someone was telling me that we don’t let kids to get bored these days. And because of that they don’t ever think about what it is that they would like to do. We just hand out a tab or a phone and our job is done but it shouldn’t be so.

    1. Boredom worked for us back when we were kids. We invented creative ways to beat it. It is easy to hand over a gadget to the child but it doesn’t work too well in the long run.
      N is pretty much over the moon and sends a thank you :-).

  5. N asking for royalty for her pics being used is giving me chuckles. Her photos are nice clicks and I hope her mom does not go bankrupt using her photos 🙂
    I have shared this post on my FB page because a hobby cultivation in these times is absolutely necessary. I often see able-bodied elderlies fighting depression and lonliness in their old age in the absence of something constructive or creative to pursue because they were running for whole of their lives making ends meet. Agreeing that life in their times was not easy but this should be moving enough for us to do that one (or more) thing which keeps us happy and which we can lean upon even when we get old.

    1. Ha ha.. going bankrupt was my dread too! I was hoping for a ‘family’ discount, but no luck! Thanks a ton for the share. I feel pretty strongly about doing something solely to make yourself happy.

  6. Peacock pictures is a great name for her photography company 🙂 lovely pictures. You are so right about children cultivating hobbies, keeps them happier and focused. A wonderful read.

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