Advent Conspiracy," We have always done Christmas differently, at least since having children. We have always had presents, though in a modest way (with a very small budget). We have not done Santa, however. We do not ask the kids what they want, so no list making! We, instead, always wanted to keep the focus on Christ, not on getting things.
The first objective for us THIS year was creating lasting memories for our children. How many gifts from your childhood do you actually remember receiving? Probably can't count them on one hand, unless you have a photographic memory. The second objective was making sure our focus was on Christ! The third was considering how much we already have, and how there are so many people out there who are much less fortunate than us.
That being said, here are our plans, I have to create the physical calendar, but this is what is going inside.
Dec 1: Luke 1:26-38. Angel Comes to Mary. Angel Coloring Page.
Dec 2: Matt 1:18-24 Angel appears to Joseph.
Dec 3: (Friday- Movie Night) Veggie Tales Christmas Movie 1 (Star of Christmas)
Dec 4: Matt 14:15-21; 24:35; Prov 28:27; Isaiah 58:10 Feed a family in Haiti and a family in Honduras (rice bag and food basket from Lifeline Christian Mission)
Dec 5: James 1:27; 1 Tim 5:3; Talk about what it means to be a widow and what we should do; Tomorrow, bring dinner to 2 widows.
Dec 6: (Bring the dinner to widows) Also read Isaiah 9:1-7 Names of Christ prophesy; Veggie Tales Song "For Unto Us a Child is Born" which ties into the scripture reading.
Dec 7: Luke 2:1-5 Trek to Bethlehem (Life Group meets that night)
Dec 8: The Pine Tree Parable book; Christmas Tree coloring page
Dec 9: Make Christmas Cards (Finish tomorrow if needed)
Dec 10: (Friday- Movie Night) Veggie Tales Christmas Movie 2 (The Toy That Saved Christmas)
Dec 11: Bake Christmas cookies; visit neighbors with goodies
Dec 12: Luke 2:6 "No room for Jesus" discussion for kids, the idea that if people had known who was being born, they would have offered their room
Dec 13: Deut 15:11; Prov 19:17; 1 John 3:17-18; Acts 20:35; Eph 4:28; Discuss children who are much less fortunate, ie. no bed to sleep in; Buy a bed for a child in Honduras through Lifeline Christian Mission.
Dec 14: Sing Christmas Songs; Lessons & Carols at daughter's school
Dec 15: Unwrap a new Christmas book (need to pick, buy and wrap ahead of time) and read it together.
Dec 16: Mark 1:1-11 Prepare the way; John the Baptist baptizing people; Jesus gets baptized
Dec 17: (Will be in the car) "Lord, Bless us with..." fill in the blank; Listen to Christmas music
Dec 18: Legend of Candy Cane; Bookmark craft; eat a candy cane!
Dec 19: Using small strips of paper, write who you want to pray for this season, make a prayer chain and hang it (like garland). Doesn't have to be just people you know personally (ie. children who will receive your gifts, etc.)
Dec 20: 1 Peter 5: 1-7 Shepherd; Buy a Bible for a child in Haiti or Honduras through Lifeline Christian Mission.
Dec 21: Matt 2 Wise Men; What gift(s) would you bring?; Coloring Page
Dec 22: Family Game Night
Dec 23: John 1:1-18; Light of Christ; Drive around and see Christmas Lights
Dec 24: Bake a cake for the birthday celebration; Candlelight service at church
Dec 25: Luke 2:16-21; Open presents. After naptime, eat birthday cake!
What will you do differently this year, to shift your focus?