Monday, November 17, 2008

Thinking about Christmas

I, like many others, have begun thinking about Christmas. Even though I dislike the fact that Thanksgiving is often overlooked, and Christmas gets cranked up earlier and earlier, I have to admit that I have even bought a couple of Christmas presents already. One of my goals this year is to get the kids to think about what Christmas is really about and not get so caught up in the "I wants." I am allowing them to ask for 3 things....and anything else they get will be surprises. Also, I am reading a children's Bible with Matthew that I highly recommend. It's called The Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd Jones. In it, Christ is the center of each and every story, even the Old Testament stories. It is recommended for toddlers and early school aged children, but even my 12 year old likes to listen. I think it should be at the top of EVERYONE's reading list.
I have also stumbled upon a great little Christmas planner from Family Fun magazine. Click here to get it and print out your own. It's a cool place to keep gift lists, card lists, and those cute decorating ideas and recipes that you often tear out of magazines.
One of the gifts that my husband and I ordered already was a personalized calendar from Snapfish, complete with photos of our family and birthdays, anniversaries, etc.... We got three copies (one for us and two others for family members) for less than $11 (nearly a $60 value). How did we do it? We used Coke rewards. If you haven't begun using this system, you're missing out. My husband drinks a lot of soda anyway. On each package or bottle of Coke product there's a code. You simply go the reward site and type it in. Then you can redeem your points for free stuff. We've gotten the three calendars, magazine subscriptions, free tickets to local baseball games, free bowling admission, etc.... If you tell your friends and family to save the codes for you (and we've even been known to grab a cap out of the parking lot), it doesn't take long to accumulate points for some good stuff. For even more savings, we take all of our aluminum cans for recycling and use that money for a movie night now and then.
Finally, we're trying to get the kids to think of others. We're doing two Operation Christmas Child boxes, one for a boy, and one for a girl. We're also going to purchase a Christmas dinner from Angel Food Ministries and give to someone in need.
If you have other great ideas for making the Christmas season brighter (and less expensive and commercial), leave me a comment and let me know.

1 comment:

  1. I love, love, LOVE the Jesus Storybook Bible! I so enjoyed realizing that Jesus is in the Old Testament just as powerfully! Thank you for the reminder to plan for Christmas (so we don't miss it!) and to think of others as well!