If you are privileged to have the role of an uncle, through your siblings or friends, being a cool uncle is something that most men strive to be. This is one of the most important relationships to cultivate. With families living apart and with fewer family reunions one needs to go the extra mile to maintain the family ties to extended family. And as an uncle, you can forge these relationships positively with your nieces and nephews.

Well, read on to find out how you can become the best uncle ever…

How to be an awesome uncle

Uncles play a very important role in the lives of their nieces and nephews. Plus, they can be positive role models for their nieces and nephews. They have different personalities from the parents of the kids so they usually bring in a different view and perspective of the world to the kids. Most of them live in their own homes so the kids would visit them and the kids would learn things that are foreign to how they are being raised at home. And if these things are done right and are fun, kids tend to idolize their uncles.

Being an uncle especially when you don’t have kids is important. Besides having more time to spend with their nieces and nephews, they can also be very influential to them. Kids usually see their bachelor uncles as very cool dudes. If you have uncles, I am sure you can remember how cool they were in your lives when you were little. Now that you are grown, you probably feel that its time to be that awesome uncle too. Well here is some advice on how you can take on the mantle fully…

Connect with them

Much as it might be tempting to mingle with adults at family gatherings, make time to interact and goof around with your nieces and nephews. Find out what’s going on in their lives for instance with school, what Halloween costumes they will choose this year, the gifts they hope to get. Plus, asking about the holiday gifts they hope to get will give you an idea of getting them cool uncle gifts. Just take an interest in them and get down and play with them a little.

Do fun stuff with them that their parents normally won’t do

Make time to do or teach the kids some fun and slightly dangerous things or games that their parents normally won’t allow them to do. For instance, if the parents feel they are too young to ride horses or drive, be the first to teach them… with a disclaimer that they should never do it alone. Besides the dangerous stuff also teach them other fun stuff too. But while doing all this, if they misbehave in any way, you need to step it up and correct them.

Tell them jokes, riddles, and cool uncle tricks you know from when you were growing up.

This tip is related to the one above. Showing them cool uncle tricks and teaching them how to be kids is the most important job of an uncle. Tell them silly jokes. Give them riddles to solve. Show them cool stuff like making fart noises with the armpit. I remember my uncle taught me that one. And I have passed it on to my nephews and they love it when they see this goofy side. And I know I am the best uncle in the world for that.

Offer to babysit if you live close by

Make time to take them off their parents’ hands once in a while and spend the night with them doing some cool stuff or having a movie marathon and introduce them to your favorite childhood movies and cartoons. Plus, if you don’t have kids of your own its good practice for when you have yours. It might be a bit of hustle when they are babies, but as they grow up it gets easier and fun.

Buy a small gift whenever you visit and during Christmas

Children love surprises. And the good thing with kids is that they appreciate anything small so long as they weren’t expecting it. So you don’t have to rack your brain wondering what cool uncle gifts to bring when you are visiting. Just bring them something they can play with and you will be the world’s best uncle. They will always be looking forward to your next visit. Snacks are also a hit when it comes to gifting and you will score some major points.

And while speaking of gifts, get them cool (not necessarily) during Christmas. Get some cool toys they will enjoy playing with. Remember the games and toys you used to play with when you were a kid. With this tech era, those toys can give them a whole new experience. These are those gifts they never know they want until you allow them to have the experience. Introduce them to these toys and games by gifting them at Christmas.

Send a birthday card with some cheddar in it

I remember the uncles and aunts that were my favorites, were those who used to send birthday cards with some money in it. So every time I received a birthday card, I would eagerly rip it open. One thing you have to remember is that the moment you start this tradition of putting money in cards, then you have to make it a tradition. Otherwise, the day they will find nothing inside, they will totally be disappointed. And you don’t want disappointed nieces and nephews especially if they are kids or in their teens.

Always make them feel awesome. Send some money even if its just 5 dollars. It doesn’t have to be much. Just the good gesture that you want them to buy something nice for themselves on their birthday is enough and it will mean a lot to them.

Remembering kids’ birthdays is something an awesome uncle does. So make a point of putting reminders on your phone that gives you enough time to purchase the birthday cards or gifts so that they can reach them on or before the birthday.

Also, remember important events of their lives

Just as important as birthdays are significant and the monumental events that happen in their lives. These are things like rites of passage such as baptisms, First Communions, bar and bat mitzvahs. These too deserve a card or a gift. And if you want more points, then show up for such events.

Besides religious events, there are things that your nieces and nephews will experience. For instance, first job, graduations, college acceptances, marriage, and kids. Recognize and congratulate them during these special events no matter how small the achievement might seem. If you really want to keep tabs of this event and maintain the world’s best uncle title, create a Facebook private group or a Whatsapp group for you and your siblings. This way, your siblings can share these upcoming events.

Be a good example and advice them whenever necessary

Now, even if you know they see you as the coolest dude on earth, always remember that they are looking up to you. So be a positive role model for them. Let them learn from you how gentlemen behave and handle themselves. Try as much as possible not to do things that will disappoint them. Just know that you have a lot of influence when it comes to molding their behavior. Use that influence for good.

When you are not being goofy with them, dispense uncle-y advice to your nieces and nephews. Kids take advice from their uncles more seriously than they would if it came from their “annoying and lame” parents. So if you think your niece or nephew is troubled somewhere, give them friendly advice and guide them. Trust me, it helps.

Maintain the relationship even as they get older

As your nieces and nephews grow older, they get busier with other stuff in their lives. So after a while, you might find that the visits might become less frequent. Plus, you will also have your stuff going for you. Now, much as it might take more effort to maintain the relationships, the title of the best uncle ever will always go to those who manage to keep it going. And if you do this, then you will have deserved the title of awesome uncle.

Now that you know how to be a cool uncle, don’t forget to stop by Love is All Colors for more family articles.