Day 1 of 12 Days of Giving

It is officially just 11 days until Christmas!!!!!! We are so excited because that means our 12 Days of Giving will be in full swing and we also get to start our 12 Days of Family Time! Here’s a little background for you:

Starting on Dec. 14th, each day we will be doing twelve acts of kindness of somesort – AKA 12 days of giving. We started this little tradition last year and we love it. As a husband/wife team, we feel that it is important to help show our kids the importance of helping others in some way. We also strive to help them remember (or learn) that Christmas is not about getting the newest, coolest toy. It is hard to not get wrapped up in gifts, especially when every other commercial, newspaper ad, magazine, etc is showing the best deals or newest toys that everyone simply must have. I get it – but I don’t like it. Here’s why we do what we do:

We are blessed. Simple as that. We are blessed financially, spiritually, etc. We have more than we could possibly need and certainly don’t need any more gifts/toys/gadgets that will eventually collect dust. (In addition to what we jokingly call our “caveman” diet, we are also considering a much more “minimalist” approach to life – more on that later).


We are thankful. Over the last couple years, our situation has MADE us realize just how much we are blessed. We realized we don’t need things; we need God, each other and faith in both. So many people have prayed for us, said kind words, asked about us, etc. So we want to return the favor.


We want to help. We have more than we need. However, that doesn’t mean we have unlimited funds – especially now that I’m a stay-at-home mom. We do have some extra and we want to help as many people as we can. I’d love to help everyone but we chose causes closest to our families beliefs, activities, etc. Not all of our acts of kindness involve lots of money – sometimes it just requires time, effort and love and sometimes that it is all someone needs!


We are busy. This is where the 12 Days of Family time comes into play. My husband works very hard at his job and I surprisingly am working much harder than I thought at home (being a stay-at-home mom is no joke!!). Our son has wrestling, church, programs, etc. And our daughter is two.. that’s all that needs said with her. We are constantly running around and we easily forget how important it is to show each other love and time. Therefore, each night during these 12 days, we will get to “open” a family gift to enjoy together. Last year we did twelve books but this year we got a little more creative. We will still have a couple new books but we’ll also play games, watch movies, bake cookies, etc. Instead of getting insane amounts of gifts on Christmas Day – we significantly cut back to just a couple and have these twelve days of little things together. It’s not much and some of the items are things we do together often but 12 consecutive days of family time is great, especially during this blessed season.

Anyway, that’s the scoop on what it is and why we do it. Now let’s get to the first day!!!!

Day 1 of Giving : Titan Kids

In our school district, there is a program called “Titan Kids.” Basically, they help fill the needs of children in the district with items such as clothing, personal care products, cold weather gear, food, etc. We are fortunate enough to not have to worry about any of those items for our children and it’s very easy to just ignore those who do need simple items we take for granted. It wasn’t until I started watching the kids after school while picking up my son. Some kids just wore thin shirts, no gloves/hats, etc. Granted, my own son prefers to not wear a coat or gloves – no matter how cold it is. He has them, he just doesn’t like them. I’m sure some of these kids are the same – but I don’t know that for sure. Therefore, we decided to get a few sweatshirts, gloves and hats. It wasn’t much – about 6 of each item but that’s what we were told they needed for the program. I was hoping to be anonymous; however, in a small community that is almost impossible so the district sent us a nice thank you card. I hope that it helps kids in the area stay warm in this cold weather!

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Day 1 of family time: The Giving Tree

Growing up one of my favorite authors was Shel Silverstein. I actually stumbled across his book, “The Giving Tree” and decided that was going to be our first book to read this season. Our elf friend, Sully, helped get the present for us…..

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In case you are wondering, the kids were not huge fans of this book. They liked the story, but the book is black and white – no color or exciting pictures. I guess I have to forgive them, they are only 6 and 2; there’s more time to appreciate other things I suppose!

 

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