Celebrate Advent

The hustle and bustle is in full-force, with decorations up in September and crazy sales starting before Thanksgiving.  Everything around us is screaming “Christmas is coming!” but notsomuch in a Christ-like way.

Not gonna lie to ya.  I take advantage of the deals when I can, even if it’s before Thanksgiving.  With 20 nieces and nephews to buy for, plus our own children, my gift-giving budget insists that I be on the lookout all year long.  (And yes, I still thrill in finding a $20 gift for $5.)

But what about our hearts?  There is no end to the preparation that takes place for Christmas gifts, decorations, and food.  Are we preparing our hearts for the season? 

One way to make sure our hearts are turned toward the birth of Christ is to anticipate, and there is no better way to anticipate than to participate in the Advent season.

“Advent is a spiritual season of preparation before Christmas celebrated by many Christians. “

Advent Calendar

Limitless.  There are so many ideas out there for Advent Calendars, from fun and whimsical to deep and spiritual.  Opening a box or book or door revealing a hint of Christmas each day in December is exciting for the kids and a great way to count down the days.

Advent Devotionals

Most devotionals include a topic, Bible passage, summary/message, and prayer.  The As We Wait Family Advent Devotional is no different, and might be just the simple tool families need for quiet reflection at the supper table or before bed.

Advent Wreath

We have both this one and a more traditional advent wreath to mark the days and weeks before Christmas.  I don’t generally burn candles in the house, so when we sit down for supper on dark fall evenings with wreath candles lit, we are stilled.  Well, more than usual, anyway, and I’ll take what I can get with five little people at the table!  It’s a great motivator, too, to make that effort to eat as many meals together as we can in quiet anticipation.

Truth in the Tinsel

This is Advent on steroids. 😉  Truth in the Tinsel is an Advent experience for little hands.  24 days of Scripture reading, ornament crafts, talking points and extension activities. Plus fun printables and templates!  Truth in the Tinsel is a fun way to spend intentional time with your kids before Christmas.  Turn their hearts toward Christ!  (PS ~Amanda’s offering FREE printable ornaments on Black Friday with purchase of the ebook. The printable ornaments are $3.99 and the book is $7.99. Getting the ornaments for free is almost like getting the book for half price!)

What Advent traditions do you enjoy as a family to prepare your hearts for Christmas?




  1. Amy-Love your ideas! I love the advent candle wreath too, and have been considering it for a couple years, but haven’t broken down and paid the price for it!

    We also have fallen in love with the Jesse tree tradition and enjoy the anticipation of Jesus’ birth that brings.

    Last year, we also incorporated several feast days- Saint Nicholas came to visit, and we also celebrated St. Lucy, St. Ambrose and Juan Diago. With the help of beautiful picture books and special treats, our celebration was focused on important elements of his coming– joy, light, faithfulness, etc.

  2. We are a “Christmakkah” kind of family ourselves. Celebrating the “great miracle which happened there” as the lights of the temple burned miraculously, helps me to remember the light of God Who came to earth to reveal Himself as the Light of the World. Christmas lights take on a whole new meaning after that.

    I think anything we can do to help our families and ourselves to slow down and disengage from the frentic pace of the holiday season is definitely a “finer thing”. :0)

    • “I think anything we can do to help our families and ourselves to slow down and disengage from the frentic pace of the holiday season is definitely a “finer thing”. ” Yes! That, and remaining joyful during the frenzy. 🙂

  3. Rebecca L. says:

    I have 18 nieces and nephews on my husband’s side alone with another on the way and I am just wondering why y’all don’t draw names??? We can’t afford to get even a $5 gift for each person, and a $5 gift sometimes is not even that great—for a 20something year old, I mean really, that might just end of being chapstick and gum or something lol. That would also alleviate the continual hunt on burden on the adults. We had to start doing that, it was just too hard on fixed income grandparents as well.

    • We don’t draw names because not everyone in the family wants to draw names. Yet. 😉 And truly, it’s not as bad as it sounds RIGHT NOW. As the kids all get older, I’m sure something will have to change, but right now, it’s fun! (And the thrill of finding a $20 gift for $3.99, well… that’s fun, too.)

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