Monday, December 17, 2012

Christmas Fun

Are you ready to be photo-bombed? Because it looks like the next several posts are going to do exactly that! Only halfway into the month, and we have already taken over 300 photographs. No worries, I won't be uploading them ALL here ~ just most of them! :)

We are on Christmas break, which typically runs from Thanksgiving through New Year's for us. For the first time, this year I planned to do school work for three weeks in late November and early December, just so the kids could finish up the school year by May. We did complete one week, but then threw in the towel in light of all the fun things there are to do to truly enjoy this happy season to the fullest. They are only little once! We will tag the other two weeks onto the end of the school year, no biggie. 

First up: this year's advent calendars. These are a countdown from December 1 to Christmas, with one little gift/treat each day through the 24th to help pass the time until Christmas. My family exchanged these every year growing up, and our family has continued the tradition every year since then. You can read about past years here, here, here, and here. I couldn't find a post about the calendars from 2009, but found this post instead, which is full of super cute pictures of the kids when they were younger. I can't believe how quickly they are growing up!!! GASP!!!!

My husband's, made by Solomon

 Mine, made by Isaac

Solomon's calendar was made by my husband. It is online - each day, there is a new Bible verse that is a clue to where that day's treat is hidden.

Isaac's, made by Becky and I

John's, made by Miriam

Miriam's, made by me a few years ago and "repurposed"

Becky's, made by John

 Anna's, made by me

We usually exchange the calendars the day after Thanksgiving. Becky was SO thrilled with hers, and couldn't wait to start opening the little sacks. She would push Stephen in his bouncy chair up to it, show him each baggie and tell him about what she thought was inside, and just generally admire her calendar. It was, and still is, so cute. Every morning she stumbles out of bed half-asleep, and then goes looking for the right number for that day. 

This year, as a total surprise to us, we received a package in the mail from a sweet lady out of state who listens to my husband's sermons online. In it was an advent calendar for all of the children. The six oldest take turns opening days 1-24 each day, and day 25 is for baby Stephen.

This was made with so much love and thoughtfulness. My favorite part is how each day, there is a Bible verse clue to go with that day's little surprise for that child.

Needless to say, the kids have LOVED having this calendar as a special surprise this year. Thank you so much, Miss A.!!!

Isaac's turn. Our tree has been decorated since this picture was taken. :)

That leaves me with only about 294 more photos to share. More in the next post!!! On that note, my apologies for being such a slacker blogger this past week. If I could, I would blog every single day ~ but my unreasonable family wants to eat, have clean clothes, and have me to themselves! ;) Today, I got up long before dawn, after much too short a night, to get caught up on some important stuff that needed to be done on the computer. Sitting down at the computer during waking hours gets my kids attention on me more than anything, second only to wanting to have a minute alone in the bathroom. I'm sure all moms reading this empathize completely.

Enjoy this season with your little ones. Try to do something special every day, even if it's just small and quick. They'll be grown and gone in the blink of an eye.


  1. Aww,how sweet that a lady sent the handmade advent calendar for your kids. The kindness and generosity of people, astounds me sometimes!!

    Loved all the pictures, and I'll look forward to the rest...all 294!! ;)

  2. How nice!! I love the idea of different Advent Calendars. You look like you have a very busy Christmas season coming up...hope you enjoy every minute of it with your sweet family. And yes, I totally agree with you on trying to be alone in the bathroom...not too much privacy when you have children! LOL!

  3. I thought you would address the Sandy Hook shooting, and and disheartened that you haven't. :( Usually you have such insightful things to say.

  4. I like the different formats you used for your advent calendars. They all look fun.

  5. I love this tradition. You put so much time into making the season (and birthday's, etc.) special for your children; in fact, your posts about your kids and family life are my favorite, you seem happy and involved and close to all your little ones (who are getting so big now!). Merry Christmas to all of you.

  6. LOVE everything about this. You are one creative, brilliant, hard-working amazing woman of God, and may God bless your family.

  7. I recently watched your husband's latest video production and found your blog. Your family honors the Lord, but you should be aware of the Roman Catholic tradition of the Advent calendar and the Pagan origin of the Christmas tree. Not to be critical. Just do some reading on it before you do it next year.

  8. I praise God for your Godly efforts!


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