Getting Ready for December

As we approach one of my favourite times of the year, I begin to prepare how we will celebrate the Christmas season and what special memories I would like to make for our family. We also have five birthdays in our immediate and extended family, that we celebrate in December, so that makes December slightly busier 😉 This is why we need to slow down and have a lighter schedule this month. It is so important that we have times to relax and enjoy the festivities. One of our goals this year is to have all gifts purchased and hopefully arrived, before December 1st. We are on target! This is what the month of December usually looks like at our house:
  • No official school - we usually round up school the last week of November
  • The Jesse Tree for devotions in the mornings, along with an advent calendar of some sort
  • Half hour of Christmas read alouds in the evenings, while the lights of the Christmas tree flicker and shine through the lounge room
  • Watch a Christmas DVD, usually for the girls in the afternoon (or morning, depending on what our outside activities are that day). I use this time to wrap presents or take a rest 😉 This is something I have been doing for years during December. However, during a normal week of the year, we might watch one family movie and they may watch one hour at the most, of a children's show. So watching a DVD most days in December, is another memory maker just for the Christmas season.
  • We have Christmas music playing most of the day, usually my oldest girl will put some music on before I do 🙂
  • Baking yummy Christmas treats - we don't bake much during the year for health reasons, but in December we do bake delicious Christmas goodies for gifts and to simply enjoy.
  • Swim - cool off in the pool. I find this a great way to relax and unwind during this busy season, even if it is just watching the girls in the water. It gives me a chance to stop and clear my head.
  • Even though we don't do official school during December, we do cover these most mornings after our Jesse Tree devotions. You can learn while having fun right 😉
    1. Christmas Carols or Hymns - learn the lyrics of a new one each week.
    2. Story read alouds - we spend between 15 minutes and an hour just on read alouds alone here. We have acquired several great books relating to Christmas. Each year I also borrow a few from the library and purchase a couple of new ones too. All of our Christmas books are stored away in January and brought back out again for December. This way they are kept special and exciting!
    3. Journal writing with Christmas related prompts - each girl has their own book that gets packed away for the year. Its always fun to dig it out and read through what they wrote in past years
    4. Christmas poetry - we love reading poetry 🙂
    5. Scripture memory from Luke 2
This year I am going to have us work on a handicraft that can be given as a gift (you will have to wait to find out what that is! I am having my oldest help me prepare for that as she has a little more experience in that field than I do :blush:) Over the next couple of weeks, I will search the net for ideas of other things I would like to add or do differently. One year, I wrapped 24 books individually and each morning of December, the girls took it in turns to open one. While that proved to be fun and memory making for them, it meant that the last several books couldn't be enjoyed more than once. Which is perfect for some families, but for us, we love to read and reread, especially our favourites. So it seemed a shame to have these lovely books sitting there all wrapped up and not being enjoyed. So last year, I placed all of our books in a basket near our tree, like I did in previous years, and the girls could just enjoy them over and over at their own pleasure. Oh and if we have time, which we usually do, we will play a board game or work on a 500 piece puzzle together. Oh and one more, haha, we most definitely have to go out and enjoy the Christmas spirit at the shops, followed by a special treat and a drink in a Christmas cup at our favourite coffee shop 😀 Check back in early December to see what we do this year!

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