Christmas Pageant group picture. Dark church. Cheap camera.
Salt dough ornaments. Still have to put on glitter and some sequins and some paint accents.
I had a very successful Goodwill visit. New-looking books to give as Christmas gifts, costing only $.50 cents each. They got a few in their stocking tonight (they never questioned where I got them), and more in a box under the tree for tomorrow. Many are classic novels the boys will need in the next few years.
I worked out a tradition to adhere to in regards to presents: something for their spiritual growth, something for homeschooling, and something they can do together as siblings and/or that we can do together as a family. So all in all, three to four presents, although only the spiritual gift will be individual--the rest will be shared, like the brand-new looking dinosaur monopoly game I found at Goodwill for $1.50!
New giant-print Bibles for the boys, and the Jesus Storybook Bible for the girls. The Bible covers didn't fit, unfortunately. :( The Christian bookstore, believe it or not, had only one Bible cover and it was for a woman. They also had no giant-print Bibles. I had to get the boys' Bibles at Walmart, of all places! And the covers.
The bookstore did have an Interactive Nativity Set put out by Family Life Today. It teaches the meaning of Christmas, much like Resurrection Eggs teach the meaning of Easter. I can tell you more tomorrow, after the kids open it.
Paint is dry (used poster paint), some have glitter glue coats, but need paint accents and sequins, etc.
But a little rat-looking compared to Harry the Hamster, if you ask me. These little guys stand on their back legs like kangaroos.
Husband doesn't have much time off (not even all of Christmas day). I'm trying to put together a nice celebration, nevertheless. We used the Bibles to do our own Christmas Eve service, as husband's schedule didn't allow us to go to the 6:00 PM Christmas Eve service at church. The candy canes, put in the stockings, helped keep the girls quiet and still for a short time during our home service. Emphasis on short. We also had prayer and sang some Christmas carols together.
I thought of another tradition this week. I want to ask each child, each year, what they think the meaning of Christmas is, and record the answers in a Christmas Memory Book, along with what we did that year to celebrate. It would be so neat to see how the answers change over the years.
We didn't have any family to see on Thanksgiving, and the same this year for Christmas. I have aunts here, but they have big families of their own, and our family of six takes up a lot of room. My closest aunt goes to Florida at the beginning of December now, so that doesn't help. They used to have us over for Christmas dessert. Things are a little lonely this year, but I reminded the kids how full and wonderful their holidays will be when they grow up and have four siblings and the siblings' families to share them with. Boy, that filled their eyes with joy!
Merry Christmas, Dear Friends! Love you!