Advent: simplify Christmas by celebrating Christ

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“How much more of God there is to find when we are on the lookout, when we shape our ‘everyday’ and ‘especially’ around him.” – Noel Piper

Advent is near and dear to my heart. When my youngest was just a baby I had a passion to start our own Christmas traditions. Back then there wasn’t Pinterest and I think that was a blessing because I was forced to keep it simple!Β  Today I just wanted to share a few resources I have found over the years that have really made this time of year special for our family.

 

First of all I highly recommend reading the book Treasuring God in our Traditions. You can find a hard copy on Amazon or the publisher has made a PDF version for free HERE

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One of the main things I implemented from that book was a simple Advent Calendar. John Piper’s Wife Noel designed one that were were able to purchase but it is no longer available. You could google it to make your own or there is I found a DIY kit on Etsy HERE

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This tradition has become such a precious memory for all of our children, they all pretty muchΒ  know the story by heart.

If you are just starting out and need something that has little to no prep ahead of time consider using a reading plan for the Jesus Storybook Bible. I have read this to my littles and the best part about it is that it will speak to you as well. I promise.Jesus-Storybook-Bible-An-Advent-reading-plan.png

Another popular idea is a Jesse Tree, a tradition dating to Medieval Times that tells the story from Creation to the Christmas Story. You can find information and DIY instructions HERE

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Spell Out Loud posted about a “Names of Jesus” Advent Paper Chain that they use with their family. You can find instructions and and instructions HERE

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A great family devotional for Advent is Nancy Guthrie’s Let Every Heart Prepare Him Room This book is a helpful tool to bring your family together for a few moments each day in December amid the hustle and bustle of the season. (They have updated the cover since I purchased)

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Celebrating Advent is not just for children. My all time adult devotional is also from Nancy Guthrie titled Come Thou Long Expected Jesus. I read it each year and it is fresh and most days moves me to tears. I highly recommend it!

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The last thing I wanted to share with you is something that is new to our family this year, Unwrapping the Greatest Gift: A Family Celebration of Christmas It is a book by Ann Voskamp with the Advent Tradition of the Jesse Tree. You can purchase the ornaments at Dayspring, but the book also offers a free link to download printable versions of them. It looks fantastic and I cannot wait to try it!

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I hope this post was helpful and not overwhelming to you. Do not try to do everything in this post! Choose one thing that sounds like it will be a blessing to your family based on their ages and what season you are in as a mom.

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