I am so excited to share with you all the 25 days of Christmas we are doing with the boys this year. Last year we did the famous Elf on the Shelf routine and to be quite honest I found myself feeling……guilty. Guilty about tricking them into a type of pressure situation where someone was constantly watching them and if they dare to act like actual children they would be at risk of being on the naughty list. It just didn’t sit right for me. We want our boys to experience the fun and excitement of Santa and all that goes with that, but we also know we want them to grow up knowing that the birth of our Savior is the first and foremost reason for the Christmas season. So this year I think I found a great way to incorporate the Elf and Santa into our learning about Jesus’s birth. So over the next few weeks I hope to share with you our journey!
Elfie made his first appearance 2 mornings ago. He brought with him a letter from Santa of course and a box of treat bags.
The letter basically says that Santa is no longer keeping a naughty and nice list because he has come to realize that we are all naughty at times no matter how hard we try. Elfie is being sent to us by Santa so that we can help teach him about grace and about the love that Jesus gives us even when we don’t deserve it. So no more naughty or nice list…….in it’s place is grace. Praise God for His never-ending unconditional grace!
With the bags that Elfie brought us we made a yummy batch of reindeer chow to be able to give away to friends and others that we encounter this month. We brought out a box of Christmas cards and decided each day we would try to give a card and a bag of treats to someone and we would also make it a point to serve someone each day this month.
In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.
In his bag, Elfie brought us a simple craft of making a star ornament. We got to paint it and tie some twine on the top and hang it on the small tree on our counter. While painting the star we talked about what it must have been like to be traveling so far and then not having a hotel room to stay in. We talked about what it would be like to have to stop in the middle of our road trip and sleep in a barn with all the animals. And how scary it must have been for Mary and Joseph to have their first baby there with no family or friends or doctors around. It is truly amazing to see the faces of our boys turn to genuine concern when they start to think about how things might have been.
The boys were super excited to hang their ornament on the tree and could not wait to brag about it to daddy! The next item on their agenda was to decide what to do with our gift bags of goodies. Though it was 40 degrees and rainy outside, J was convinced we needed to go outside and start handing it out to the neighbors. I love his big heart. The first thing we did was put a card and bag in our mailbox for our mail carrier. The boys were so concerned about it being out there all day I believe they must have run out to check on it at least a half-dozen times. Finally they came screaming in the house, “He took it! He took it!”.
Later this evening we decided to go out for dinner and thought we would take our goodies to share with our server at the restaurant. J had the honor of handing the card and bag over to our sweet waitress. She was so surprised that someone would bring her something special. The boys’ faces lit up with pride that they had made someone happy with something they made.
I am so proud of them and I can’t wait to see how tomorrow goes!!!