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Christmas is such an exciting time here in our house! We love celebrating the holidays together – keeping the focus on the gift of Jesus and repeatedly pointing the hearts of our children toward the manger….and then to the cross.
Jesus: The Greatest Gift of All
In our house, Christmas is a time when we seek to focus on the true reason for the season, and I am excited to share with you a few of the creative traditions we enjoy throughout the holidays.
On Thanksgiving night, we decorate our family Christmas tree, and in our house, this officially kicks of the season. The first thing I do is gather 15-25 faith-focused children’s books from our homeschool closet where I keep my picture books organized by the season. I wrap each of the books and then place them under the tree. Usually, they go under a small Christmas tree my kids like to put up just outside their bedroom doors, and it’s neat to see how personal this makes it for them.
Each night before bed, we read one of the books together as a family. My kids have so much fun taking turns choosing books. If you decide to do 25 books (December 1st-December 25th), that’s great. However, in recent years, I have only wrapped approximately 15-20 books – simply to accommodate those late evenings out or those nights when we’re out of town. I don’t want this read-aloud time together to feel like a chore or a have to. I want it to be a simple activity that keeps our hearts in tune throughout the season.
When I was a classroom teacher, I enjoyed doing this with my students, and as a mom, it has become a special part of our Christmas traditions. One year, I even let my oldest help me wrap the books, and he loved being a part of preparing the gifts.
As we go throughout the month of December, I also like to be intentional about doing a few small crafts/projects with my children, but this wooden nativity craft was all their daddy’s doing! He decided to make these with them one evening last year, and these little creations couldn’t have turned out any cuter.
Want to try it with your kids this year?
Needed Craft Supplies:
Wooden Craft Sticks
Crayons, Markers, or Paint
Yellow or Gold Pipecleaner
Step #1: Set aside two full-size craft sticks for the roof of the stable and one full-size craft stick for the base of the stable.
Step #2: Assist the child in breaking 2 other craft sticks in half: Two halves will serve as the sides of the stable, and two halves with serve as Mary and Joseph.
Step #3: Assist the child in breaking 1/3 of another craft stick off – This will be the Baby Jesus, and the other 2/3 will be the angel atop the stable.
Step #4: Assist the child in arranging the stable as pictures above and hot gluing the pieces together (and hot gluing a piece of twine around the Baby Jesus).
Step #5: Next, give the child the creative freedom to color or paint the scene however they wish.
Step #6: When they are finished with their artwork, assist them an wrapping a yellow or gold pipecleaner in halo-form above the angel’s head! This halo makes the perfect ornament hanger, and we let our little one’s hang theirs on our tree right away.
What a perfect time of year to point the hearts of our children toward the Father who loved them so much that He sent His Son for them – truly the great Gift we could ever receive.
Looking for a new tradition that will combine the truth of Jesus with fun activities your family can do as you count down to Christmas Day? The Shepherd on the Search is your answer!
Thousands of years ago, the angels visited the shepherds and brought them good news. When the shepherds heard this good news, they set off on an epic journey to search for the newborn baby Jesus. You can make this timeless story come alive with YOUR very own shepherd.
We are so excited about adding our shepherd to our list of family traditions.
His journey begins each year at the start of the Christmas season and ends on Christmas Day as he finds his way to the manger.
The story of the shepherd’s search is captured in a beautifully illustrated children’s book, and the fun begins when you hide your shepherd at night and your children set off on a search each morning. A special tradition of searching for the shepherd and retelling the story helps your family focus on the true meaning of Christmas.
Beginning November 27th (the Sunday after Thanksgiving), DaySpring will provide fun, “daily adventures” for families to do with their Shepherd. These will be activities such as printable recipe cards for crafts, baking activities, games and more.
Want to join in the fun?
Sign up here!
The Christmas season can feel rushed and hectic, but Shepherd on a Search can help your family reaming focused on Jesus – the reason we celebrate! Want to give your kids the greatest gift of all this season?
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