Monday, December 10, 2012

Christmas Fun

Sorry it has been a few weeks. With prep for craft4life I haven't had the time to post. It was awesome AND I will do a post on craft4life tomorrow or Wednesday.

In the mean time I wanted to share some of the new traditions happening in our household. Usually leading up to Christmas we are totally focused on our kids....What we would like to give to them and trying to help shift their focus and ours to others. We, to be honest, don't usually spend a ton of time thinking about what to get each other....we usually discuss one thing we want and buy it together prior to Christmas  This year we had made plans to go to Weekend to Remember, a marriage conference family life puts on across the country. It was phenomenal and if you've never been you definitely should. I may share more about that conference in the coming weeks. You can check it out here. Anyway for the Saturday night date night they recommend couples plan it in advance (dinner reservations, bring gifts for each other, etc) So....I started thinking about what I could give him and remembered something i pinned last year on Pinterest. It was a Christmas Spouse countdown. It looked like this.
You can go to a tutorial by the dating divas here. (p.s. The dating divas are awesome and have amazing ideas of things you can do/make for your hunny... ) I can't say enough... how important dating your husband is. If you have spent much time with Lyle or I you know that we are passionate about seeing marriages not just last... but thrive! Anyway....I did mine a little different. I used free digital scrap booking stuff from here. They have tons of free downloads. You can't use them for things you are going to sell or make money off of BUT you can use them for personal use! I digitally scrapped the inside and outside. Printed and folded the cards and then wrote handwritten notes in each card. There are 24 days leading up to Christmas so I did 2/3  (16 cards) are things I love about him, qualities I admire, etc. The remaining 8 are half (4)acts of service (a massage, doing something for him that I hate ironing his and half (4) are date nights focused around things he loves to do..some are at home and some are going out..Last night for instance was a Daddy concert. He brought home his guitar and he played while we all sang and listened. The kiddos loved it! I can't write these all out now as he will read this (love you babe) and I don't want him to know before he opens the card. I glittered some clothes pins and clipped the cards onto a ribbon. NOW each morning he opens a card and reads it....if it is a date or act of service he can look forward to it for the rest of the day! It was an inexpensive gift that I really love and would recommend for any wife (or thoughtful your wife would think you were to do something like this)...It is a great way to show the one you love during this season that they are an important part of your life and thank them for who they are! It is something I will definitely do again next year!

Another tradition we have added to our home this year is Elf on the shelf. For starters...Our kids don't believe in Santa. They know that Santa is a fiction character that brings joy to people during the Christmas season BUT that Christmas is about Jesus birth. We talk about how it's Jesus birthday but He doesn't want gifts from us...He just wants us to love Him....We talk about how it is a season to show others his love too and a way of doing that is giving each other gifts. We talk about how Santa is a fiction story of gift giving and that kids think the gifts come from Santa BUT it is really just a fun way for parents to bring Christmas joy to their kids. All that to say....that hasn't stopped our kids from asking Santa for things for Christmas and they still run around the house as soon as they wake up to see where our crazy elf is even though we've told them he's pretend. For those friends who are now're kids are going to ruin Santa for my kids...we have also told them they are in on the Santa secret BUT they can't tell other kids. It is their own parents job to let their kids in on the secret some day not Austin and Livs. Austin giggles and looks at us when he hears another kid saying something about Santa.
Ok so.....A few years back my Friend Mandi Cheslock and her husband were on this crazy adventure where they traveled the country for his job and lived in the trailer they they pulled around with them. They got to experience some really cool things and around Christmas that year she broke out the elf on the shelf. He was crazy and silly and it looked so fun. A few months back i ordered ours online so we were all ready for December. We read our kids the book AND talked about what was real and what wasn't THEN...IT STARTED.... Let me introduce you to BUSTER!!!!

Improving our family Photos...

Racing with the toys...Buster Won!

Bath time....

What are you doing Buster....

He didn't think our decorations were acceptable...

Buster was doing Austins Quiet time..

Buster was trying to get up to visit the Angel Austin made...
I think that Lyle and I have had more fun each night when the kids go to bed coming up with something new than they have when they find him. We have had a blast...So whether you believe in Santa or don't let me say that an elf is just a super fun thing for your kids but even more for you...I love it!
So...those are just some fun family things...BUT what about others....We have several projects that our family is a part of this Christmas to show Gods love to those around us and I will write about that later this week. Maybe you can get involved too....Come back to find out more.
I am also going to share about one of our favorite Christmas Day Traditions to share with our kiddos about the true meaning of Christmas!
What are your super fun family traditions? 


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