If your children are anything like mine I am sure they have a long list of things they would like to see under the tree come Christmas morning. Although I love Christmas time and I truly enjoy seeing their faces light up on Christmas morning as they come downstairs and see their gifts, I also worry about them getting too caught up in the receiving and forgetting about the giving.
This year I wanted my children to really focus on the spirit of giving and to realize the real meaning of Christmas. Normally we would do a chocolate advent calendar to help them count down the days until Christmas, but this year we will be focusing on others as we count down the days.
Here are a list of ideas my daughter and I compiled to celebrate the season and count down the days to Christmas:
1. Family movie night ( we ordered Chinese food, watched a Christmas movie, and snacked on holiday treats)
2. Baking Christmas cookies.
3. Write Grandparent Letters ( the kids are compiling a list of why they love each of their grandparents and why they are so special and we are going to mail these off with their Christmas cards to the grandparents)
4. Decorate Daddy's Car ( we are using sticky notes and washable car markers to let Dad know how much he means to us and how much we love him)
5. Thank you letters to Librarians and bring them a special sweet treat. ( as homeschoolers we utilize the library a lot so this seemed like a good way to give back a little)
6. Make a Special Christmas craft ( clay nativity set)
7. Go to the movies to see a special Christmas movie. ( We are thinking Rise of the Guardians)
8. Invite friends over for a cookie decorating party and hot chocolate.
9. Make thank you cards and goodies for the children's leaders at church that serve our family each week.
10. Make goodies for each of our neighbors and deliver them each with a special note attached.
11. Go to Toys R Us and have each child pick out a small toy to be donated to the Toys for Tots program.
12. Polar Express Night ( watch polar express than pop popcorn and make hot chocolate and drive around in the car listening to Christmas music and looking at all the Christmas lights.) I originally got this idea from Pintrest and it can be traced to this blog: http://www.confessionsofahomeschooler.com/blog/2011/12/mini-van-express-tickets.html
13. Tape quarters or dollars to vending machines and little gum ball machines as a special surprise to the next person who comes by.
14. Bring canned goods to our local pantry.
15. Clean out our rooms before Christmas and donate some used toys and clothes to those who need them.
16. Make a special ornament for the tree.
17. Bring donuts to our local fire/ police station.
18. Bake and decorate a Happy Birthday Jesus cake.
How do you and your family celebrate the season of giving?