Here’s hoping!

Caution:  Trigger words ahead.  Christmas.  The holidays.  Shopping.  Decorating.  Crowds.  More shopping.  These words may be sending shivers up your spine as you read them.  Or these may be the most wonderful words in the English language for you.  And even if you are somewhere in the middle, as most of us probably are, you may be wondering how you can fit in all of the duties of the holidays and still manage to live out the advent theme of our church and “slow down and connect to the sacred story”.  And how do you take the time to instill into your children the hope, the love, the joy, and the peace that Advent brings.  Spoiler alert:  I don’t have the answer.  But I do have some ideas.  Some fun ideas that will help us to connect to our family and connect to the story and hopefully have a great time along the way.

We are hoping that everyone will set aside one evening a week to spend with your family focusing on the meaningful things this season brings.  We will provide a simple list of activities and discussion ideas.  Sort of a choose your own adventure type of thing.  We will try to include choices for the young to the young at heart.  The most important thing though is to slow down and take the time to spend together and we promise it will be worth it.

Week 1:   What is Advent?

“Advent” means “coming” or “arrival.” During the season of Advent, we celebrate Christ’s coming into the world and watch with expectant hope for his coming again.

https://www.presbyterianmission.org/ministries/worship/advent/

Discussion:  What is Advent?  What do the candles mean?  How does each candle point us to the coming of the Christ child?

Here is a good description of the different candles and what they mean:

http://livinghopeomaha.com/special-services/holiday-worship-schedule-at-living-hope/the-meaning-of-the-advent-wreath/

Activities:  Make an advent wreath or take out your advent wreath

http://www.pinterest.com/pin/227150374931155175/

adventcandle

http://www.catholicicing.com/advent-wreath-craft-for-kids/

advent wreath craft 9

http://www.craftinterrupted.com/2010/12/advent-wreath-kids-craft.html?m=1

advent1

Here’s some beautiful versions for the older set:

https://www.etsy.com/listing/168632341/glittering-forest-advent-wreath-holiday?ref=related-2

advent2

http://thestrategichomemaker.wordpress.com/2013/01/11/christmas-superlatives/

advent3

And the easiest of all! You only need a printer:

http://www.freefunchristmas.com/christmas-coloring-pages/advent-wreath-coloring-page/

advent-wreath-main-340x340

Once you have your advent candle situation under control, how about a game?

Play a board game you already have or play a game that doesn’t need anything such as charades or simon says or follow the leader.

Hope is the first candle of Advent.  Close with a prayer where you discuss your hopes and fears.

I sincerely hope you have a less stressful Advent season with the one’s you love! -Katie Reid

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