Sunday, December 12, 2010

An Early Christmas Surprise

Today we planned a special day to give our kids their Christmas present early! Before that though, we spent some time talking as a family about how Christian and I are feeling convicted to pray and ask God about doing things a bit differently for next Christmas. Even though we try really hard not to go overboard (we get the kids one gift from us, and usually spend about $50/child, and a few stocking stuffers), we're really feeling like we need to scale down and give more than we do to the poor. I've been reading a few blogs lately where the families don't even exchange gifts at Christmas and I've been feeling a bit disturbed. I think it's a good thing to get disturbed... They take the money they would have spent on presents and give it away.
We bought a Wii this year for our little wee ones, and we really wanted to give it before Christmas so the focus on Christmas day isn't all on playing it. We're having my parents and Christian's Dad and Step-Mom here for Christmas we want to spend time visiting, playing board games, singing etc.
So, I set up a treasure hunt with clues and had the kids running all over the yard and house following them. While they were outside, I hid the Wii under the tree. When they found it, we had three kids jumping, hugging, and laughing!
We've spent the afternoon playing together and it is ever fun! I had no idea how much I would like it :)
I really love this time of year and being creative with ways to focus on Advent as a family. This year, I'm trying a Jesse tree/Advent devotional as a family. We light the house with candles after dark and spend some time focusing on Jesus and the reason why we celebrate His coming.
Is anyone else feeling disturbed about the crazy money we spend at this time of year? What are you doing to focus on the Birthday Child?


Rachel said...

Yes, Jenn...I have been feeling the same way. Actually it started a few years ago and the feeling just seems to get stronger each year. THAT being said I haven't actually put my feeling about it into action yet. We are going away this Christmas and the boys gift is going to be a special outing while we are down there. I too would like to reduce the desire for 'stuff' and turn the focus from me me me to paying attention to others. How this is going to be played out has yet to be seen. Our pastor just started a new series called 'Bling' on this exacty topic. You should watch the webcasts...he says some painful stuff but good stuff. Well, I've written a novel here...ramble, ramble, ramble.
Love you and miss you all!!!

Norma & Doug Cairns said...

Way to go Jenn! Dad and I have discussed this too and we've decided to support World Relief with a donation rather than buy gifts for ourselves. looking forward to spending Christmas with you ---
love Mom

Christiano Stonehouse said...

Thanks for this nice, thoughtful post honey. I really appreciate you and how much love and care you put into every detail of our family. I Love You and thanks for blogging!