Remembering Christ This Christmas By Lighting ‘Em Up!

Tuesday our church’s women’s group had a Christmas party.  One of the women {who comes from a talented family of poets} read aloud a beautiful, heartfelt poem she wrote.  We were all extremely touched by this poem.  I received permission from her to share this with you.

A Birthday Wish

It’s my birthday party
Another year has passed.
The celebration grows each year
Yet I’m thought of less and less.

Just like you, I look forward
In an eager way,
To many birthday greetings
On my special day.

I do not ask for much
Wrapping paper, there’s no need.
All I want for my birthday, is
Please remember me.

I don’t need a cake
With adornments on a table,
Acceptance is what’s wanted
From the babe born in a stable.

No special song required
For me to have a smile.
Just acknowledge my existence
And talk with me awhile.

The decorations are breath taking
The lights, the star, the tree.
While merry you are making…
Please remember me.

I love the beauty of the carols
Of this special season
But “Silent Night” is my favorite.
Do you know the reason?

It’s not the shopping and the spending
It’s the kindness and charity,
That should be taught within your home
And to your family.

Gaye Willard {click on photo to go to artist’s site}

The white beard, the red coat,
Around the world in a blink.
MY beard is white, MY robe is red,
Perhaps there is a link?

Yes…St. Nick is my servant
A faithful one, is he
Symbolizing all that’s good
But please remember me.

It may be my birthday
But I gave the gift to you,
Eternal life through my sacrifice
When your earthly life is through.

Yes, it is my birthday
And I hope your gift will be
The only birthday wish I make:
Please remember me.

Written by Dana L. Dugan
Dec. 8, 2011

Isn’t this poem phenomenal?

I highlighted a stanza because I’ve been working on this in our family.  Have you heard of Booing?  Booing is a sweet service activity we have done as a family in October for Halloween {you can see what we did by clicking here.}  We put together little baskets of goodies and secretly left them on doorsteps of friends.

One Mom has taken this Booing idea to the month of December for Christmas and calls it Light ‘Em Up!  Families Light Up The Community With Kindness.  Courtney from Lil Light O’ Mine started this last year with her family and shared it on her blog.  Fortunately, many others, like me, were blown away with the idea of teaching our kids kindness and charity in a fun way during the Christmas season.  Courtney is very organized and has 100 ideas on what families can do, check lists and labels {all FREE} to help your family Light ‘Em Up!

Monday night we read over the ideas and did our first Light ‘Em Up.  It was simple…Christmas container with Christmas shaped sugar cookies we made.  I printed out the very cute labels and we were ready to share some Christmas JOY with someone.  My goal is for our family to do this at least once a week, but I plan on putting the big candy canes with the labels wrapped around them in my purse.  This way the kids can hand them out to whomever they feel inclined to surprise wherever we are.

I hope by doing these random acts of kindness our kids will catch the vision of service.  It really is the best gift we can give our Savior besides remembering Him.  We are His hands.

The Christ{mas} spirit is contagious,

Saucy Costumes & Friendly Patches

Like Mother, like Daughter…

Great ideas often come at the last minute.  Friday my oldest informed me she was going to a Birthday Halloween party on Saturday.  She asked if she could invite a friend over to make their costumes after she finished taking the ACT.  They decided to make these Taco Bell sauce packets out of T-Shirts.  Needless to say, it took the remaining time between the ACT and her party to make them.  They had some snafus along the way, but they persevered and turned out super cute.

Family night yesterday was filled with our yearly Halloween tradition… a visit to a local pumpkin patch.  We barely made it there before the sun went down to take these photos.

Something made this visit a little more special than usual {besides it being the last Halloween with my oldest living at home.}  The pumpkin patch was a fundraiser to help a family adopt a child from Korea.  The family was there eating dinner together.  I was happy to help them in their endeavor while buying pumpkins for our kiddos.

The following photo is proof I was there since I’m not in any of the above photos. 😉

I LOVE PUMPKIN PATCH PHOTOS!

Family Traditions Bring Joy,

Family Home Evening

Last night we had our weekly tradition of holding family home evening or FHE. This is a time where we turn off the TV and sit together as a family by sharing a lesson, praying, singing hymns and if it is a good night…an activity &/or treat.

I decided we needed to teach the kids the importance of commitment. We went over what it meant, what are exact commitments are to each other as a family and also to our Heavenly Father. I have realized after starting a new program (The Total Transformation) due to my son’s misbehavior that my ineffective parenting style sometimes sends mixed signals about this important character trait. So while I work to become more effective, I hope in turn, I teach my children that it is important to keep their commitments. At the end of the lesson, I quickly reintroduced accountability…we have to be held accountable for our choices. If we decide not to keep a commitment…there are consequences. As parents, we have to hold our children accountable to commitments they have made to us.

Our activity was our treat! We made Carmel apples! It was fun to make them…super easy and delicious to eat, very ooey gooey by the way. It reminded me of when I would make them with my family growing up. It may end up being an October tradition.

Happy Fall Yall,
Shan