Each year, we try to find new ways to make Christmas more meaningful. It is so easy to get caught up with gifts, lights, decorations and lose sight of what is most important . Last year, we retired our Little People nativity scene and our 'What Does Jesus Want For Christmas' set and passed it on to younger cousins to enjoy. When the kids can tell you what is in every box before you ever even read the Bible Scriptures - you know it's time to move on to something else ;) We needed new and fresh ideas. My sister told me about a book called Redeeming the Season by Kim Wier and Pam McCune. I bought it on sale last Christmas in preparation for this Christmas. I absolutely love this book... So many new, easy, affordable, and inspiring ideas to bring the focus on Jesus!
This year, we chose to do an activity called 'Attribute Ornaments'. I purchased 25-30 mini ornaments (last year on sale) to use on a mini-Christmas tree (I had stored in the closet collecting dust). Each day, from December 1st-December 25th, we choose an ornament. We read and discuss a passage of scripture that talks about an attribute (or Godly quality) of Jesus, then we use a permanent marker to write the name of that attribute on the ornament and hang it on the mini-tree. I think the kids will enjoy taking turns looking up the scriptures, reading the passages, and hanging the ornaments on the tree.
Since I gave away the Little People nativity set, my table where it used to set...feels empty. It looks like I'll be hunting around for a more grown up nativity set now :) I really wanted to buy a beautiful hand-carved olive tree nativity set from Salam Ministries in Bethlehem, http://salambethlehem.com/. My sister brought me a beautiful figurine from them when she visited Bethlehem a few years back and I loved the smell and look of it and thought it would be wonderful to have an entire nativity set made just like that figurine, but the shipping and handling was just as expensive as the nativity set, so I'll stick to looking for one here in the the USA...unless my sister plans another trip to Bethlehem...then I'll send my wish list along with her ;)