Monday, January 2, 2012

ADVENTures in Christmas

I can hardly believe Christmas is already over.  It is my favorite time of year.  I love the colors, sounds and wonder of it all.  Since it always goes by so fast, this year I had a plan.  I sat down and planned some sort of activity for every day in December.  Did we do every activity I planned? No, but we did most and if I hadn’t planned them ahead of time I know I wouldn’t have done half of what we did.  I printed them out and put them in the stockings for the kids to find. For some reason Ben called them his “jobs”.  He’d ask, “What is my job for today"?”. 

Some of our jobs activities included

  • decorating cutout cookies
  • caroling to our neighbors and giving them goodies we baked
  • decorating and eating sugar cone Christmas trees
  • Taking a drive to look at Christmas lights. Ben and Jacob finally enjoyed it this year!
  • making Christmas cards
  • reading Christmas books in front of the fire
  • Put together a gingerbread house
  • Made ornaments
  • Christmas movies with popcorn
  • Picked out animals to purchase from World Vision (details to follow)
  • Dad reading A Certain Small Shepherd
  • Christmas tree and candy cane pizzas

I had found an easy ornament craft to do with Ben and Jacob so we sat down one night to make them.  They were supposed to be Christmas trees. Jacob hurried through his and couldn’t wait to put it on the tree.  Ben however had no interest in making a Christmas tree.  Nope. He wanted to make Wyoming.  Yes, the state of Wyoming.  So I did what any mom of an autistic child has learned to do…let it go.  So he made Wyoming.  When it came time to take down the Christmas tree I was so thankful that I fought the Martha in me that wanted the ornament to be the perfect Christmas tree and instead let my little boy be who he is and make “Wyoming”. 


The iPod game that he plays has faces on all the states so he had to put a smiley face on it.  I love it. 



This year we wanted to include the kids in giving to others less fortunate than them.  Of course there are so many great organizations to be able to do this but we chose World Vision.  World Vision has a program where you can purchase farm animals to be given to a family or families in poverty stricken countries. Since the kids love animals and have enjoyed grandma and grandpa’s farm animals so much we thought they would love to go online and choose the animals.  They have some great videos explaining the program and it helped the kids see how their giving can help a family in need.  I think it was better for them to be able to see where their gift was going than just sending money not knowing exactly what it is being used for.  So we gathered around the computer with the intent of picking out some animals.  After much uh, discussion, we decided on a group of 13 small farm animals which included a goat, chickens, ducks and rabbits.  This was a perfect compromise because of course the three kids couldn’t agree on one animal.  Ah, the spirit of giving.  In the end the kids were very excited about their gift and Matt and I were very touched at how generous the kids were with their money.  I think this will be a new Christmas tradition at our house.

DSC04228DSC04247The boys did the gingerbread house with mom.  I think they ate just as much candy as the put on the house.  DSC04257DSC04260DSC04263

Grandma was a huge help when it came time to decorating the cookies.  Jacob’s ended up more sprinkles than cookie.  Ben loved his world T-shirt he got from grandma.DSC04274DSC04284

We had a wonderful Christmas.  December was full of activity but we spent lots of time together as a family.  We are so blessed and grateful for our family and friends.

John 3:16  “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in him will not perish but have everlasting life.”

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