Sometimes we just need to slow down, think things through, have a plan but then….HAVE some good o’ Christmas FUN! This Christmas can be one of the most memorable, the most traditional, and the most meaningful Christmas ever for you and your family. To encourage just that, I thought I’d share STARTING TODAY, an ……
18 Days ‘Til Christmas and I Choose To:
18. Start each morning in prayer and bible reading, and exercise.
17. May the first thing I do in the morning is … Thank God for a new day!
16. Refuse to let the hustle and bustle of the season ooze into my own pace.
15. Refrain from being on so much social media. It’s ok to treasure this time of year with more focused attention & less social distractions.
14. Be intentional with the quality time I spend with family and friends.
13. Be sure to make time for memory-making. Enjoy the festivities, but be selective in how many we attend.
12. Think ahead into my next 11 days of meals and menus and make a run to the store to get those last minute items I may need. Being married to a grocery store manager, I can tell you that NOW is the best time to plan and prepare for the last 10 days or so until Christmas.
11. Refuse to go in debt. It’s not honoring to God and it’s not worth going into debt this time of year.
Now it’s going to get fun…
10. Kiss my husband every day and give him a little “token of my love.” It can be anything from a hershey kiss, to his favorite magazine, fishing lure, … anything silly and fun. Here’s some suggestions: If he likes hunting, maybe a roll of camo duck tape. Does he like sports? Maybe a pair of socks in his favorite team colors. This doesn’t need to be expensive, and it can all be homemade … a framed picture of your first Christmas together, or maybe handwritten notes for the next 10 days that start with these words, “WHY I ADORE YOU.” – The #1 need of our husbands is Admiration. Their emotional tanks need to be filled with genuine (not fake) but real admiration from their wives. Even if they don’t admit it or recognize it, they need to know in their woman’s eyes, they are still their #1. Take the last 10 days ’til Christmas to express how much you love and admire him! It’ll be one of the best Christmas memories for him, and could possibly start a Christmas tradition!
9. Hug my children every day and encourage them to prepare their hearts for the real reason of the season – Celebrating Jesus!! Based on their ages, have a craft for them to do each day. Print off some FREE printables and give them “each day” some time to sit and be still as they color pages, work word searches, etc. that are all on Christ and Christmas. Are you kids older, maybe a just a night around the fire with an inspirational Christmas movie, or a drive to look at Christmas lights, or participate in a “Family Night of Christmas Worship” at a local church.
8. Start a new Christmas tradition with my family, (it’s never too late!) In only 8 days, it will be Christmas morning, so how about spending today preparing our home. Purging out clutter, freshening up the home, doing some cleaning and organizing so the last 7 days, the last week before Christmas, we are living in a nice, clean, and readied home. (Until the kiddos trash it again, but hey…we at least gave it a go! haha!)
7. Bake lots of treats for this one reason — to give away! Give cookies to my mailman, my dry cleaner helper, to that friendly lady who always serves me through my favorite drive through. Surprise my pharmacists with treats, and maybe a few grocery store helpers who serve me with a smile. (That would be all of Rip’s co-workers!!) Give treats to my hairdresser, my workout instructor….it doesn’t have to be much, but even if it’s just a stack of 3-4 cookies wrapped in clear saran wrap with a few strings of pretty Christmas ribbon tied around it, it’s the thought that matters. Let this be a baking day, and tomorrow — be the day you load up the kiddos and make deliveries!
6. Make Christmas deliveries to friends and people in my community who matter to me!
5. Look at my givings….if there is anything left I need to go purchase? I’ll make today that last run out day. So, the last 4 days before Christmas, I can just enjoy the celebrating of Christ’s birthday.
4. If you are traveling for Christmas, today is good for that last minute laundering to make sure all the clothes are clean and ready to be packed. Make that packing list and start getting everything together.
3. Watch Christmas movies and enjoy … HOME. Burn candles & enjoy the night at HOME.
2. Do what you want to do … but just be sure to praise the Lord thoroughly and enjoy this sacred time of year!
1. Christmas Eve – no matter what it is you find yourself doing on THIS DAY, make time for this one thing – reading the Christmas story in Luke 2 with your family. May the Bible reading of Christ’s birth always be a tradition in your home because that one story truly is the “reason for the season.” It sure is a tradition in our family, along with a “Happy Birthday Jesus Cake.” A tradition that I had as a little girl, and one I’ve carried into my family’s Christmas Eve celebrations.
*I know there are several who may read this post and have lost loved ones and this time of year is not what it once was, what you may long for it to be. I want you to know that you are being prayed for. Rip and I are praying for all the families that has suffered loss and our prayers are with you. May we encourage you in a small, very small way, but this Christmas as you celebrate the birth of our Savior, celebrate the life of your loved one. Celebrate every memory, and praise and thank God for their life, their love, their example, their laughter…and thank God for the peace, joy and strength He is giving you during your grieving. He is with you, He is with you intimately, and He will continue to help you through. We love you and are praying God’s comfort and peace for you and your family.