Yesterday, while we were visiting Brett’s mall, we swung by a toy store to let the kids pick out toys to donate to the Salvation Army’s Toys for Kids campaign. And today, for our Christmas activity, we dropped them off at the collection bin outside Eva’s preschool.
[This is Theo, regretting his decision to give the toys away 😂.]
We do this every year with the kids…and it’s not easy for them to go into a toy store and leave without a toy for themselves. I just kept telling my kids, “You will get your gifts at Christmas and these toys are for other kids to open at Christmas, so you can all have something special Christmas morning.”
It might seem cruel, but it is so important to me that my kids don’t think of Christmas as just a day when they get gifts. I am constantly telling them that Christmas is just as much about spending time with family and friends and giving gifts to other people.
We have also been working very hard on patience with Evangeline, so she understands now that she has to be patient and wait for Christmas to get her gifts. And she and Theo both have such sweet spirits and they want to give toys to other children, so it went pretty well this year. I hope that in the future, my kids can embrace the spirit of giving and look forward to the time when they get to make some other child’s Christmas magical.
🎁 🎁 🎁
Today the kids and I went to Brett’s store to decorate his office and the back room for the holidays. It wasn’t exactly easy to make the place look festive, with big racks of clothes and employee lockers as a backdrop, but we did our best.
The kids put ornaments on two small trees and we strung a few strands of lights and hung a big wreath.
The real excitement was just visiting daddy at work. The kids were so excited, they woke up talking about it and cried when we had to leave. [And we actually visit his work pretty frequently.]
This was the first time JoElle has been to his store since she started walking. She LOVED exploring and just tottered back and forth down the hallway the whole time.
♥️ ♥️ ♥️
Today, the kids and I made Danish woven heart ornaments to send to their cousins and friends with their Christmas cards.
This past summer, I read a wonderful book called The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking.
[By the end of this short book, I had fallen in love with Scandinavian culture.]
In the book, I found this handy guide for making paper woven hearts, which is a Christmas tradition in Denmark:
I knew the moment I read about this simple and beautiful Danish tradition, that we would have to make them as one of our 25 Days of Christmas Activities.
They were tough for my 2 and 4-year-olds to do alone, but they did surprisingly well once they learned the pattern.
We made a bunch.
I’m sure they don’t look as good as the ones in Denmark, but I’m proud of our first attempt.
Then, to keep with the Danish theme, we baked Danish butter cookies to take to Brett’s work tomorrow – but between Brett and the kids, they won’t make it to tomorrow.
Our annual December tradition of 25 Days of Christmas Activities began today.
[We usually put up the tree and decorate on the first, but I worked in the morning and Brett will be working until midnight, so we did our decorating yesterday.]
To kick things off, the kids and I created a countdown to Christmas paper chain. It’s hanging on our chalkboard and currently reaches the floor. Each day we will take a link off the chain so the kids can get a visual of how many days left until Christmas.
[This is super handy because I have to convince them every morning that it’s not Christmas yet.]
We also made snowmen ornaments for the tree. [They were leftover crafts from last year.]
The kids watched A Charlie Brown Christmas and we brought out our collection of Christmas books and read a lot of beloved holiday stories that we haven’t seen in a year.
And now I’m addressing our Christmas cards.
I debated whether I should send Christmas cards this year, because of going “green” and all that, but it is a tradition that I love.
At least they aren’t printed on photo paper so they can be recycled… 🤷♀️
Happy December, ya’ll!!!
🎄 🎄 🎄