Monday, November 28, 2011

How I am showing my kids to *love* this Christmas! {child-friendly, service advent}

I had this talk with my 6 year old last week: 

Me: “What do you want for Christmas?”
Him: “MOMMY! Christmas is NOT about toys. It is about family. Being together as a family is ALL that is important”
Me: “Well, yes. It’s really *all* about Jesus. And He wants us to celebrate His birthday with Him … which means you get presents! What would you like?”
Him: “MOM!” {now sounding like a annoyed teenager} “It’s not about TOYS!!”

So Thanksgiving night I gave him a Target ad and told him to “want” away ... I need a wish list!! J

Sweet boy …  what a problem to have, right?

For advent this year, we are using this: Truth in theTinsel. Click on it and read.

I love, love, love, love me some of this as well: A Jesus Advent, but if I am honest it was often difficult last year to take it to my preschoolers level. The Truth in the Tinsel eBook was MADE for my preschooler {now kinder and a added toddler}.  Bible. Talk time. Crafts. Um, yes please.  I think we are even creating a special place for our advent ornaments.

In addition to the readings and crafts we will also be doing service projects. This is something we started several years ago, and I adore the idea of showing my kids how to LOVE. We talk a lot about what Jesus wants for his birthday … what can we give Him? Well, we can love his people. So, I’ve reworked our servant calendar and have attempted to make our service acts correlate with what we’re learning about {for instance one day we talk about the census and how people traveled, so that day we will be blessing our crossing guard}. Some days are random acts, but the majority has a tie in.

Our servant acts look like this:

Day 1 – be a light by making something for your neighbors
Day 2 – give a care kit to a homeless person, include several names of Jesus in it.
Day 3 – use your mouth for good. Compliment 3 strangers today.
Day 4 – go shopping for food bank
Day 5 – take a meal to a family in need
Day 6 – actually go donate food to the food bank
Day 7 – write a letter or song to someone who makes a difference; mail.
Day 8 – take flowers to an elderly person
Day 9 - write daddy a letter telling him 10 things we respect about him
Day 10 – leave a thank you card & candy for the postman
Day 11 – pay for the order behind us in the starbucks drivethru; asking the clerk to pass on a card where we explain that Jesus means “God saves” and Immanuel means “God is with us”.
Day 12 – take some goodies to our crossing guard.
Day 13-  make homemade bread for a busy family.
Day 14 – make Christmas cards for the NICU parents.
Day 15 – take cards to hospital
Day 16 – take a stuffed stocking to the LB Rescue Mission
Day 17 - Do a 30-minute beach clean-up.
Day 18 – Leave $1 bills w/ “Merry CHRISTmas” post-its on them in hidden places at the Dollar Store
Day 19 – Make thank you cards for our firemen & deliver them
Day 20 – Collect & return carts at the grocery store.
Day 21 – Sort through old toys to donate {if you read above, you’ll realize this will be a HARD one for my boy! Lol}
Day 22 – take goodies to Daddy’s office {aka: the church office} for staff
Day 23 – donate a toy at a toys for tots location
Day 24 – buy homeless guy by the church dinner / make Jesus a cake.

I have said this before, but at the end of the day *all* that matters is how we can answer the question “Lord, did I love well today?” … 

How will you love & share this Christmas season? 

1 comment:

  1. I LOVE this! I've already printed out your list, and am editing it for our family (as we have no beach to clean)! I also linked you in my post, I hope that's okay. Thanks for the inspiration!