5 Meaningful Family Christmas Projects

December 20, 2018

 

A lot has happened around this kitchen table in December. I didn’t set high expectations this year, and just decided on a few activities we could do as a family that were linked with either advent, family traditions, or act of service. Here are a few that really resonated with our kids I thought I would pass along…

 

 
Dried fruit garland – Super simple activity for ages 5 and up. I sliced oranges and dried them in the oven on 200 degrees overnight. You can use fresh cranberries or dry them the same way. Gabriel and Veronica have been really curious about trying this out, and they really enjoyed this project…..most likely due to the eggnog dad provided. We took this project from an advent activity pack that wove in the Psalm 1:1-3, and the hopeful waiting for faith to bear fruit.

 

 

 

Beeswax candles – If you aren’t into orchestrating crafts this is for you! Super simple. I ordered the kit from etsy and the kids just rolled the wax sheets around the candle wick. They make really sweet gifts and can also be used in vintage candlesticks for decor or as prayer candles! (If you want to add a faith based message, we link this to is the message of John 1:5, “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it…”)

 

 
Neighbor gifts – Do you exchange food gifts with neighbors? This was always the way it was growing up in the midwest, but it has become a rare thing these days. Our experience with neighbors is that most people keep to themselves. This motivated me to shake things up and bring them Christmas cards and a homemade treat from our family. This doesn’t happen every year. Some years I have scrambled to get anything out the door. Gabe makes to die for caramel popcorn, and we decided to make a few batches to put it in paper boxes for gifts. Saying hello and wishing your neighbor good tidings can be the simple reminder we all need of kindness and love.

 

 

Care kits for the homeless – I had grand hopes of doing all kinds of service projects with the kids, but as I called around to nursing homes, foster care centers, and food pantries, I quickly realized that my kids were to young to volunteer. I was disappointed, but again was reminded that in this phase of life, simplicity is best. I have seen so many ideas for care kits for the homeless so we decided to make that our family service project. We took them to the store to buy supplies, and created an assembly line on the table to put everything into gallon sized bags. We are keeping these in our car all winter to pass out to anyone we see on the side of the road holding signs, and asking for help. Here is what we included:

Care Kits for the Homeless
1. Gloves
2. Socks
3. Toothbrush
4. Toothpaste
5. Water bottle
6. Granola bar
7. Shampoo
8. Kleenex
9. Encouraging message

 

 

The Giving Tree – For the past four years, we decided to donate a Christmas tree to a family in need. It is something simple we can do to lighten the financial burdens or be a reminder of hope for families during the holidays. We were that family for several years, and I will never forget the people who came through for us when things seemed dim. Somehow, every year we find just the family who needs it. I really hope my children grow up with the understanding that service for our communities, neighbors, and strangers is a normal part of life that fuels the good in the world around us. Maybe someday they will each be delivering their own giving tree to families in need of hope.

 

What are your favorite Christmas memories either as a child or with your own children? I think any time we set aside for family can be meaningful. Time is something we can so easily take for granted!

 

Leave a Comment

  • Lovely, all of it. What are the chances of getting the recipe for Gabe’s caramel popcorn?

  • This was such a beautiful post ❤️ I really like the idea of using fruit as the garland I’m sure it makes the house smell amazing . I can relate with having trouble finding volunteer opportunities for you and your kids to do together. As you embark into 2019 please feel free to find and follow our page ATL moms making a difference. Our group of volunteer moms created this space to provide safe and fun volunteer opportunities in the Atlanta area for you to do alongside with your kids . We serve at the Atlanta mission with homeless women and children, we serve an afterschool program in the inner city of Atlanta and the kids who attend that program, and we often coordinate donation drives for collecting items and delivering them to our local partners. You can find us on Facebook and Instagram @atlmomsmakingadifference – wishing you and your wonderful family I happy holiday😊

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