Kimochis® Soup for Military Families!
Materials: Kimochis feeling pillows and soup pot and ladle
Activity Duration: Varies. Depends how long you like to cook (5-30 minutes)
- Sprinkle all of the feeling pillows around an empty bowl. For children who don’t read yet, name each one as you go. “Happy, Sad, Mad … let’s make Kimochis® soup!”
- Select a positive or challenging situation. For example, “Let’s make a soup about how you felt at recess.” Ask children to pick up whatever feelings represent the situation. Just choose and toss!
- Look at the ingredients in your soup. Often soups will contain both positive and upset or (hard to have feelings), which is a hard concept for little ones to comprehend. This activity will help your child understand that it is normal and okay to have mixed feelings like this. Now if you child has happy feelings amid some sad experiences, they can better understand that it is okay to feel some relief during the upset feelings that might arise with the various cycles of deployment.
- Pass the soup bowl so you can take turns pulling one feeling at a time. Ask your child, “How might this feeling (name pulled-out feeling) happen at recess?”
- Pass the feeling pillow around for everyone in the family to share their best tips and tricks to make the upset or hard-to-have feeling in the chosen situation smaller or better.
For example, “When I feel sad, I make things better by… (name a strategy that helps you cope with this upset feeling).”
- Pass the positive feelings around for everyone to share how to create more of these feelings at school and/or at home.
For example, “I could have more happy feelings if I…. (name an action that helps you create this positive feeling.).”
- You can also make Kimochis soup for joyful reasons! For instance, brainstorm all the positive feelings an experience might bring, or did bring, you and your family.
For example, make a soup about all the feelings after a wonderful weekend spent together. Relive all those positive feelings as a way to fill your hearts up and keep a cushioned heart for when hard-to-have feelings come in life!
YOU ARE A HERO!
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Kimochis Activity Kit for Military Families,
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- Use this soup recipe before, during, and after the deployment of your service member.
For example, “Let’s make Kimochis Soup. Let’s toss in all the feelings we are having as we are getting ready for our mommy/daddy to come back from service.”
- Pull out one feeling at a time and share ways to help yourself and each other with the hard-to-have feelings.
Also, hold your proud feeling pillow to remind all how your family is serving our country, which is a feeling that can often bring some comfort to the challenging feelings that can come with being a military family.
If you have access to a mental health provider, reach out and ask for some helpful ways to use your Kimochis Feeling Pillows to make soups that will help create and keep your family’s emotional strength and close bond.