Monday, November 12, 2012

Gifts For Giving

Right now, as I write this post, there are 42 days, 14 hours, 29 minutes until Christmas!
We love Christmas in our home. My kids have already asked a hundred times if we can get our tree - even my older kids!
I'm trying to hold them off until the week of Thanksgiving, but honestly, I'm just as excited as they are so I think we'll start decorating next week.

With thoughts of Christmas comes my Christmas binder. I have an entire binder just for Christmas ideas. It's filled with crafts, recipes, gift ideas - you name it, I save it in my Christmas binder. And since Pinterest has come around, my binder of ideas has only gotten bigger!
I thought I'd share a few things we are planning on doing this holiday season. Some are traditional and some are new ideas we're anxious to try.

The first has many names, depending on which of my kids you talk to. I personally like to call it Secret Angel. But it's been know as - the sneaky elf, ding dong ditch, and some really silly names.
No matter what we call it, the results are the same and that's fine by me.
My kids and I find a person that we feel needs home holiday cheer. I keep my ears and eyes open, find an address and we start filling a box.
In the past we've tried to cheer up a widow with some baked goods, a pretty candle, a book and other odds and ends. We found out about a little girl that needed to be in the hospital over Christmas for surgery. Another lady that just needed some cheering up.
We fill our boxes with items we think they'll like and mail them or deliver them.
(It's more fun to deliver them!)
Here is how we do it -
Late in the evening we parked down from "the" house. The little ones and I stayed in the van, but within site, and my teens quietly run to the house, put the box by the front door, ring the doorbell and run! It's so much fun as they run back into the van, the little kids laughing like crazy and just to add the the adventure, my son will sometimes act crazy and yell DRIVE. Sometimes we really do hurry and drive off if I know the person and they might recognize my van.
We drive away laughing and feeling good.
The boxes aren't much, mainly to let someone know they are loved and prayed for.
We do have a signature letter we put in every box that has a poem and Bible verse on it.
 We'll wait until the first week in December and we like to do a box a week the entire month.

I love Advent and we do several different styles of Advent in our home.
Here is a cute idea that I'll be doing with my younger children this year.

 Another type of Advent we do is lighting candles. We light one each Sunday before Christmas and read verses that go along with the lighting. We usually finish on Christmas Eve and light all four.

One of my favorite books filled with great ideas and stories is Lisa Whelchel's -
The ADVENTure of Christmas: Helping Children Find Jesus in Our Holiday Traditions.
You can find it HERE.

Making crafts, baking and decorating are all lots of fun things we like to do every Christmas.
Here are some more ideas we'll be doing this year!

I'm super excited to start planning our holiday season and would love to hear your ideas for gift giving, crafts, recipes and anything fun you like to do with your family!


  1. Hey Crystal!

    I've been talking with my girls about doing a "Secret Angel" for years, but am wondering how to get a name and address of someone in need. I have an extra soft spot for the elderly. If you here of anyone in need, will you give me a shout?



  2. Hi Crystal! These are some wonderful traditions and ideas - I'm equally obsessed with Christmas, it's the best time of year. I think I'll try to incorporate a few of these this year :)

    Lauren @