Advent Fun 2013

Advent 2013

I have purposely documented our daily Advent fun together this year on Instagram!  The secret reason I did this wasn’t really to share, but to keep myself accountable!  I am not always the best with follow-through on long term projects, like Advent.  My daily photos helped remind me and kept me from slacking off.

Since we traveled this year, I closed up our Advent activities on Dec. 19, so we doubled up some things that were intended to last longer. Dec. 19 ended up being a pretty crazy day and at the last minute I decided to pack up the very last Advent bag and bring it with us on our trip.  We opened the final bag on Christmas Day and read our Christmas Eve and Day Jesse Tree devotions together.

We used the brown bag set up this year and in the bags I kept ~ Jesse Tree ornament, Christmas ABC, and the Christmas joke.

Each school day the kids also got a new Christmas sensory bin surprise, and we also did our Birth of Jesus study for 7 of the school days. It was a low stress year, easy to do each day and for the most part, I kept my attitude in check.  I am mostly thrilled that the kids learned a lot, the Birth of Jesus study was reason for that!

Here’s a peek into Advent 2013 , thanks to Instagram!

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Resources we enjoyed this year…

Choose Attitude over Activities

I share many activities on my blog.  I do many activities with my children.  But, I have never written a post directly about the thought and belief I hold that overrides any activity I share.  I have mentioned this quote here, here, and here, but never dedicated an entire post to this idea, Mommy’s ATTITUDE matters more than the ACTIVITIES.

Mommy's Attitude matters more than the Activities

As we begin our month of fun filled Christmas activities, it is my prayer that we all remember this.  Memories will be made more by the attitude we display, rather than the crafts we make. I am not always the most peaceful, joy-filled momma.  I struggle with anxiety, stress and a temper.  I find myself on my knees almost every night praying to do things better the next day. I am definitely a work in progress.

I realize I will never be a perfect Godly momma here on earth, but that doesn’t stop me from praying, and trying to be better for my kids. I used to think better meant more fun things for them to do.  I now realized that it means having a more JOY FILLED attitude.

JOY-FILLED

{not activity-filled}

These smiling faces will certainly smile more if I smile more.

Find the JOY

A Stress-free Advent Experience

Organize Advent Activities in Advance

{disclaimer: affiliate links are used in this post}

Advent is a special time for many families and the choices of how to celebrate and make this time meaningful are bursting up all over the internet as December 1st approaches. I shared our free Jesse Tree collection a couple of weeks ago, which is a great option for those of you looking for meaningful but simple.

We have used Truth in the Tinsel for the past two years and loved it. If you are looking for something new and haven’t done Truth in the Tinsel yet with your little ones, I highly recommend it! I even have a discount code for you {off of the eBook only, which is $7.99 regularly priced}. Use code: ONEPLUS to get 20% off!

Truth in the Tinsel

 

Knowing my drop-out tendencies from years past, I knew I needed to prepare in advance and have a simple system.  This is the set up we used for the past two years, which has worked beautifully!  I even saved the bags and laminated numbers so it’s even easier now to set up!

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I got 24 brown paper bags, and put the supplies for each day {the small specific ones from Truth in the Tinsel} in each bag. Last year we used both Truth in the Tinsel and our Jesse Tree, so both were in each bag!  I used the printable numbers from this site, and laminated them so I could use them again next year.  I hung the bags up with thumb tacks on my bulletin board strips that we normally display the kids’ school work on.   It was a great way to remind me each day, and also to keep the kids excited!

Looking for simple but not into the Jesse Tree plan I shared?  You might like using just the printable ornaments for Truth in the Tinsel, they can be colored instead of putting together a craft each day!  Last year we did this and pulled out our crafts from the previous year each day.

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I saw an awesome idea shared recently, from Educating Laytons here.  Stef used Lego pieces to create Lego pieces to go along with Truth in the Tinsel!  If you have Lego fans, go check out her awesome ideas!

I have Truth in the Tinsel board where I pin helpful posts I find, as well as posts from our blog featuring us in action!

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Here’s Amanda’s Truth in the Tinsel Pinterest board to see even more ideas!  There’s also a Facebook page!


As December 1 gets closer and closer, I remember my motto for all of our Christmas fun activities ~ Mommy’s ATTITUDE matters way more than the ACTIVITIES.  This one simple phrase has really helped me stay focused on what really matters. In years past I would get totally stressed out and barely enjoy the moments I had worked so hard to prepare for my children. These past couple of years have been more peaceful and fun and for that I am thankful!

Truth in the Tinsel

You may recall we used the awesome Truth in the Tinsel eBook last year and loved it!  You can see our set up here, and a few of our crafts here, and here!

Truth in the Tinsel Set Up Truth in the Tinsel

This year we will be using the new printable ornaments, and admiring the crafts we made last year. I plan to add in the weekly advent activities from Everyday Emmanuel, and use Truth in the Tinsel printables daily.

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You can buy the eBook for $7.99, and/or the printable ornaments for $3.99

Get 20% off with discount code: ONEPLUS