11 Ways to Celebrate Christ this Christmas

IMG_8284

As 2011 comes to an end, we’re sharing helpful lists to help you save money, stay healthy, get organized, creatively repurpose, frugally gift-give, intentionally celebrate and more in our “11 Things for 2011” series throughout these holiday months. Written by Erin Odom, Contributing Writer As followers of Jesus, keeping Christ as the center of my family’s Christmas celebrations is key. Now, I don’t think it’s necessarily wrong to decorate with snowmen, buy presents, throw parties, eat lots of (good!) food or even play Santa Claus (although […]

Preparing My Heart for Christmas

snowy window

It’s been a hard year. As I begin to look back and reflect upon 2010, and anticipate celebrating Christmas this year, my heart is a bit heavy. It feels as though this year has been one of loss, struggle and discouragement. We’ve lost family and friends to cancer, and heard of more diagnoses just recently. Walked through financial difficulty, legal issues and infertility with close friends. Saw the end of a loved one’s marriage. Faced continued health challenges for my husband, and our two youngest […]

Looking Forward: An Advent Calendar

Adorable! Just think about all those old Christmas cards you could employ for this calendar.

Written by Sharon Kaufman, Contributing Writer What and When is Advent? The word “advent” means arrival or coming in Latin. Specifically, it relates to the coming of the Christ at the incarnation. Advent is celebrated in the weeks leading up to the day we set aside to remember the birth of the Messiah. It begins four Sundays before December 25, whether that Sunday is in November or December. This year Advent begins on Sunday, November 28th. However, when using an Advent calendar, counting down the days till […]

Celebrate with Joy: Epiphany and Reflections on Transforming our Christmas Celebrations

I found this year to be one of our most meaningful Christmas seasons so far. It has been such a blessing to begin implementing even a few new things into the way that we celebrate the birth of our Savior. Here are some of the things that we did this year: Daily Advent devotions through the month of December (we learned about the many names of Jesus) Made a “Names of Jesus” Garland with Abbie and Caden Made shortbread cookies cut into shapes and symbols […]

Celebrate with Joy: Week 2

willow tree nativity set

Image by ishane It’s Week 2 of making this holiday season more meaningful using the book Celebrate with Joy! How are your Advent activities going? We’ve been enjoying our special devotions (or “learning about Jesus’ names”, as my daughter says) so much. We’ve almost finished making our Names of Jesus garland, and it’s going to be beautiful when it’s finished. Each day we’ve been able to spend 10 minutes or so doing our Advent devotion, reading a scripture, doing a simple object lesson and then […]

Celebrate with Joy: Week 1

christmas joy

Image by ishane What is Christmas? It is not a winter festival. It is not the inevitable annual energy drain. It is not a few holidays to give us a break. It is not a time to fill our children’s heads with “visions of sugar plums.” Christmas is a season of holy days (the original meanings of “holidays”), filled with rich symbolism. It is a many sided object lesson using the Symbols of the Season to give us glimpses of heaven’s glory. It is a […]