A Different Advent Season

by GfG on December 5, 2011 · 9 comments

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I really enjoy Christmas, as do my kiddos, of course.  The joy of the season is not lost on us, but sometimes I wonder if the true meaning is.  Though my kids can answer the question, “What is Christmas?” with the right answer, “Jesus’ birthday!”  (even Faith has the main characters and event correct now, whew!), I still think the wonder, the awesome truth and the majestic circumstance is lost on them.  And probably myself.

I’ve considered Advent calendars and boxes for many years, but didn’t really see the need for more treats and more hype build up to Christmas Day.  There is definitely excitement and anticipation for Christmas Day around here, but I think that’s for the gifts, not the meaning the day holds.

Then I read Raising Olives goals for this December.  I liked her ideas very much, but knew immediately that they were too much for me at this point in my life.  Then I read Raising Arrows goals and knew I found an almost perfect match (the main difference is that I wasn’t up for a clue and hunt; I wanted to have the treats ready all at one time in one place because I’m not a fan of daily prep, just ask about Tooth Fairy stuff here)!

So, this year, we are doing advent with a twist.  We are counting down the days, but each day my kiddos will be treated as well as asked to have their minds drawn towards Christ and His way of life/thinking/teaching.  How?  Each morning they will open an Advent bag that contains a treat kids love AND directions for a simple activity focusing on others as well as a verse that applies.

I was super excited as I prepped this (at 11:00 Sunday night… yes, that means we missed four days, better late than never) and realized it was because we were  truly were going to be drawing our minds and hearts towards the focus of this season: the Good News has come and is to be shared!

It’s not a pretty Advent calendar, but it does what it’s suposed to do… and I couldn’t be happier.  Maybe next year, I’ll dress it up a bit.

I can not wait to see how God uses this in my children’s lives as well as in mine and My Sweetie’s.

If you are interested in doing this, it really doesn’t take much time or money (especially if you don’t have to have 6 treats in each bag 😉  ).  To save you some time, I’m posting the tasks and verses for each day for our family.  Tweak it a bit and you could get started tomorrow!

On Facebook, I asked if anyone had suggestions for someone who didn’t own a lovely Advent boxed calendar and who wanted to make the project right at that moment.  The suggestions were terrific: use a bunch of little gift boxes, or jewelry boxes, or fabric bags, or a “magic” drawer, wooden match boxes, and a tackle box!  I went with paper bags because it’s what I had on hand.

In keeping it real, this took me about an hour to do for prep (activity deciding,  note writing, bag filling and all; not bad, really) ant it takes us about 2 minutes to read the verse, give the treats and assign the task.  I have kept most of our tasks at home because that’s what I can handle, BUT I looked at the calendar to see what we were doing and when, then chose tasks that could be matched.  Two days we will leave the house specifically for a task, but only on days we are not doing school, so I was up for that.  :-)

Here is my PDF file of our list: verse and task.  Blessings!

To Him be the glory as we anticipate the celebration of Chrit’s incarnation!

(Linking to Hip Homeschool Hop)

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Sis December 5, 2011 at 3:25 pm

I love it Sis! Absolutely perfect and it’s inspired me to add to ours. While many of ours are activities to reach out to others, I love that we can add something simple to EVERY day. Thanks!
:0)

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Tori December 5, 2011 at 4:07 pm

What a wonderful, simple, meaningful idea! I love it! I’m behind this year too, but this looks great. We may jump in late and do it anyway! Thanks for the ideas and the PDF with everything already laid out. Blessings!

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GfG December 5, 2011 at 4:11 pm

We just started today, so jump in! Anything is still a blessing, right? :-)
I was hoping it might help others do it with less effort, so I hope my ideas work for you! blessings to you too!

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MissMOE December 5, 2011 at 10:51 pm

Wonderful idea. We have a binder with a scripture verse, carol, and story for each day of December. It helps us focus on the Christmas story. Tomorrow I’ll have a post up with my version of an advent calendar. Mine is also super simple and Christ oriented.

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Michelle December 5, 2011 at 11:05 pm

Oh, I love your ideas and that you have taken the time to share them! I might just be adding this to some of our advent ideas and definitely pinning it! Thanks!

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GfG December 5, 2011 at 11:06 pm

Thanks, Michelle!
I hope you have a joyous season!

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Lisa December 6, 2011 at 9:56 am

What a beautiful idea! I have been so inspired by everyone’s different Advent activities. It is so encouraging that many of us are taking the time to focus on what is truly important.

Coming over to visit from the HHH.

Many blessings,
Lisa

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Christine December 12, 2011 at 8:20 pm

Love it! Had to Pin it! Thank you for taking the time to put up the printable verses!

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GfG December 12, 2011 at 8:26 pm

Ooooh, I sure love pins. 😉 Thanks!

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