Write, don’t brag about your kids! We all hate receiving the dreaded brag letter. Writing about them is not bragging about them–at least not necessarily. With a little finesse, writing about your kids without bragging becomes easy.
1. Use your tact:
A spoonful of sugar does “help the medicine go down.” It can also stave of competitiveness as it sweetens the pot. By all means, include accomplishments. Just take a little care in how you mention it. Compare the following sentences:
Bragging: “My daughter is amazing. Not only is she the soccer MVP, but the field hockey high scorer as well.”
Not bragging (at least not nearly so much): “Georgette is a gifted athlete, but is painfully shy off of the field.
Admittedly, the second sentence took longer to craft. It does, however, tell us more about Georgette’s personality. It’s worth the editing effort.
2. Put yourself in your readers’ glasses
Bragging often puts people off, which means that they won’t get to know your child as well. Not bragging can help your readers connect with your child. Think about the people who will eventually read what you’ve written. Have you provided them with what they really want to know about your child? Have you given them a feel for his or her character? Which brings us to the next point:
3. Focus on their personality
Another way to make sure you’re not bragging as you write is to describe their budding personality. Keep this in mind when selecting which photos to include as well; look for images that capture their character.
The more you readers can envision what your child is like, the more likely they are to feel a bond. (A simple, but great example is Bumble-Bee Sweet Potato’s “ten things I love about my daughter.“)
4: Write about kids’ passions
What was or is your child’s passion? Does he dress up like Captain Underwear? Collect reptiles? Is he or she creative? As long as you avoid superlatives (he’s the best artist, she’s better than all the others), writing about their passions is not bragging.
As they grow, it can be fun to describe how you feel about their changing passions. Do you miss Thomas the Tank? Are you relieved not to have to drive them to dance class four times a week? Has a new passion replaced an old?
Again, wording can make the difference:
Brag: “Sophie can draw better than any of the other kids in the class.”
Not bragging: “Sophie can hardly look at an object without wanting to draw it.”
5: Provide a glimpse into a typical day
Consider describing a typical afternoon or outing. What kind of things do you do? How do the kids relate to each other? Write about the little episodes or everyday life. (Example: Scene from Behind)
Need More Ideas?
Memories of Me: A Complete Guide to Telling and Sharing the Stories of Your Life has more in-depth ideas on writing without bragging as well as helpful brainstorming sheets to help you get started.