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Focusing on the reason for the season

the-reason-for-the-seasonHappy December friends!  It’s official.  The busiest month of the year is here!  We all know that December can quickly get out of hand.  Don’t get me wrong.  I absolutely love the decorations and the parties and the gift giving and the music and movies and lights and everything else that comes along with celebrating Christmas.  But I also want to make sure that I’m teaching my kids (and focusing on myself!) what is most special about this time of year and why we celebrate Christmas.  This is a simple activity I’m doing with my kids this year to help us with that and I thought I’d share it if any of you would like to do it with your kids too.  I didn’t come up with this but it’s something we’ve done in the past and I’m excited to do it again now that my kids are a little older.
This is so easy and takes no time at all.  Get four sacks and label them LOVE, PEACE, FAITH, and SERVICE.  I made these years ago when I had one baby at home which is why they are so cute and each letter is hand stamped.  If I were making them now I’d grab a brown sack and quickly write the words on them.  One child vs. three. :)  My point is that they don’t have to be fancy!  The brown strips are just paper for the kids to write on.  Yes they coordinate with the labels.  Like I said.. one child.  ;)

Show your family the four sacks and explain that these are the true gifts of Christmas (gifts we can give to the Savior – gifts that come from the heart).  Explain what each one means and brainstorm possible examples that each of you can do during the month of December.  Faith might include doing things like reading books about the Savior or saying prayers or being honest (anything related to your religion/beliefs).  One example of showing Peace would be not fighting with brothers and sisters.  Love could be doing activities together as a family and other ways to show more love to others during the month.  Service could include all sorts of activities you can do to serve others (12 days of Christmas for a family, bake cookies for a neighbor, helping around the house, etc.)  Let the kids brainstorm!  They always come up with the best ideas.  :)
Set the four sacks up in front of your Christmas tree for the month of December.  Every time someone gives one of these four gifts he/she writes it down on a piece of paper and puts it in the corresponding sack.  On Christmas Eve read the gifts out loud as a family.  You can also blow out candles on a cake to wish Jesus a happy birthday.  (My kids love that.)

This is a fun way to help the kids (and parents!) remember daily why we celebrate Christmas.  It also encourages kids to have good behavior and think of others throughout December.  A win win!

Wishing all of you the best month!  Aside from getting our trees decorated and our gifts wrapped I hope we all feel and share the love that comes with this special time of year.
There’s nothing like it.  :)

xoxo, Erin
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14 thoughts on “Focusing on the reason for the season

  1. Lovely tradition! Thanks so much for sharing this, Erin. A wonderful way to keep the focus on the most important part of the season. Hugs on getting through day 2! I think you are awesome, by the way. :)

  2. Thank you for the idea. I have been wanting something simple to help us focus on the Savior. This is perfect! With 3 kids thank for permission to not hand stamp the labels. ? I truly love your blog. Thanks for welcoming us into your life and home virtually. Merry Christmas.

    1. Such a kind comment Jen! That means so much to me. Thank you! And yes – you absolutely have my permission to write the labels. With a pencil and sloppy handwriting. Ha! ;) Happy holidays sweet friend! xo

  3. This is such a lovely idea. I can see using it quarterly to help incorporate it into our little ones lives and a good reminder for us older ones year round!

  4. Hi Erin,
    This is a lovely idea.

    Like you say, even tho decorating etc at Christmas is great so is remembering the Saviour.

    There’s often some great ideas on serving etc in the December issues of The Friend.

    Do you have special family nites/FHE in December?

    1. Thanks Julie! Most December nights are family night for us. :) We watch movies, make and deliver treats to friends, take the kids on drives to see the lights and visit the nativity at the temple. Such a fun month! Enjoy it sweet friend! xo

  5. I love this Erin!! That’s exactly what it’s all about…Jesus, our Lord and Savior!! It’s so hard with all of the commercialization these days to keep that in perspective but this is a great reminder!! Thank you for this beautiful, heart felt post:))

    1. Thank you so much Bree! I couldn’t agree more! Wishing you and your darling family the best holiday! I’m so grateful for your friendship this year. xo

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