In this post: Advent fun & Jesse Tree ornaments and devotions for Dec. 9th- 11th. Pinecone crafts, a penguin playset, our newest pet, mangers, and general jolliness!
Hello, dear ones! I hope you are well. Our family recovered from Strep and we slowly got back to our Advent activities. Here’s what we did last weekend. Enjoy!
- We read The Message of the Birds and made Pinecone treats.
Leeland painted pinecones green.
- The boys painted Wooden Ornaments to give family.
- Chicken Alfredo with Christmas Noodles~ I found the pasta at Aldis.
- Jesse Tree Ornament & Inspiration for Day 9
9. Joseph’s Coat of Colors~ Read the story of Joseph in Genesis chapters 37-50. (I didn’t write devotions past this point, but I will share some inspirational thoughts.) Joseph’s family tree was a mess. His father was a great deceiver, and his brothers were jealous liars who sold him into slavery. This same family became a nation. Out of that nation came the Prince of Peace. You see, Joseph’s family tree is also Jesus’ family tree. Joseph’s story had a happy ending. He forgave his brothers and his family was restored. So while you gather with loved ones and not so loved ones during the holidays, remember…God can fix any family…no matter how broken. Jesus himself had a crazy family.
Activity: Draw a simple coat on a large piece of paper. Then have the children paint it together.
- Michael had his second basketball game and they won!
- So we celebrated by eating out.
- We decided to get Michael’s Christmas present early because it was on sale.
Meet the newest member of our family, Firefox, our Bearded Dragon.
- We ended the night by watching Rudolph and singing Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer on our piano.
- Leeland and Michael played Santa. Believing in Santa Claus isn’t a part of our traditions. Michael does know about the history of St. Nick, though, and we do enjoy being silly. We treat Santa as a cartoon/fictional character, and it hasn’t taken away any childhood joy. Our family has a lot of fun…even without elves on shelves and listening for reindeer.
However, Leeland knows to say “Ho, ho, ho” when he sees a Santa hat. He just doesn’t know why :).
- Jesse Tree Ornament & Inspiration for Day 10
10. Ten Commandments~ Read Deuteronomy 5. How do you think of rules? Are you angry that you have to follow traffic regulations? I mean, why does there have to be a speed limit? Tell me, are you just as angry that other people have to follow the rules? Or are you upset when OTHER people BREAK the rules? Be honest. We want other people to follow the rules. We don’t want other people to lie to us or to steal from us. But…when it comes to ourselves, we don’t want to follow the rules. The truth is that God’s rules are for everyone and they are for our good. You don’t want to live in a world full of liars. Well, that means you shouldn’t be a liar either. Face it. If we didn’t have laws, our society would collapse from chaos.
Jesus loves us. He takes the ten commandments a step further and goes to the heart. He tells us that hating someone is the same as murder. Jesus shows us the root of the sin of murder. It’s hating people. The root of adultery is lust. A seed becomes a tree. Even our “tiny sins” hold what we consider the most evil of crimes. God knows this and that’s one reason He hates sin. Good news! God loves us. He knows we can’t be perfect and that we are going to break the law. Jesus’ family tree is full of law breakers. God loved all of us lawbreakers so much that He wrapped Himself in flesh and came to live with us. Then He died to pay for our sin. Three days later Jesus came back to life and He sent His Holy Spirit to live in all those who accept His Lordship. If you believe in Jesus and confess Him as your Lord, then you have the Holy Spirit to help you obey God. God not only gave us rules…He helps us keep them. One day when we drop this cursed flesh, we will live in perfection with God in His Holy City.
Activity: Make a ten commandments ornament out of salt dough.
- I didn’t feel so great on the 11th, but Chris took Michael Christmas shopping at the Dollar Tree. I put together a penguin Christmas village in Leeland’s water table.
I found the wooden penguins and iceberg at a thrift store. I added the Dollar Tree Christmas house boxes and our Happy Meal toys (from when I was a kid). We also have the Little People polar bear and penguin. The igloo went to a craft set from Michael’s craft store. Cotton batting is the snow.
- Later, I set up lights and a tomato cage Christmas tree in our school house.
- I turned our play pizza oven into a fireplace. I put in a flickering ornament to make the fire look real.
- I put a Christmas cd on that told the Christmas story and had carols on it. That night the kids went to the school house to look at our manger scene and listen to the Christmas story.
- I let Leeland role play a bit by giving him a gift to give baby Jesus. He’s too young to learn the proper theology behind the Nativity, but I want him familiar with the characters.
- Leeland has several mangers to play with. This is his Little People nativity.
- This wooden manger was given to us by a sweet elderly neighbor. We use Barbie dolls for the nativity characters.
- We ended the night by watching a classic, It’s a Wonderful Life.
- We lit the second Advent candle for Love.
- Jesse Tree Ornament & Inspiration for Day 11
11. Rahab’s Rope~ Read Joshua 2. God came for the worst of sinners. He came for you and me. Jesus came for the prostitutes and thieves. He wants to save everyone. Jesus’ own family tree had a prostitute and Gentile in it, named Rahab. Rahab risked her life to help God’s people. She protected the Israelite spies, and in return they made her a promise of protection. For Rahab to accept that protection she had to leave a scarlet rope in her window. This was truly a life line. Jesus is our scarlet rope, our life line. When God sees the blood of Jesus covering our sins, He forgives us. He protects us and makes us His own…just like Rahab was taken in by the Israelites. She even married a prince, and she became the great-great-grandmother of King David. This Advent look for red ribbons tied on gifts and remember that Jesus became your life line, your blood stained scarlet rope. We all have sinned. We all need a scarlet rope. Yes, God came for you and He came for me…the worst of sinners. Activity: Find red ribbon and wrap presents.
Well, God bless and remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover