This year, I’m going to think and reflect on Advent before I rush into Christmas.
Don’t get me wrong, I am super excited to Christmas shop, and fully embrace the season of secular madness. I’m a big kid and I love it.
But this year, I am seeing a lot of Catholic bloggers talking about Advent – and that has been a wake up call for me. I need to think about what Advent is, and why Christians established it as a season.
Lucky for me, I am the parent to incredible four year old, and I am eager to go on this journey with him. If you are not a parent, or your children has grown, perhaps find a niece, nephew or grandchild to embrace this season. Their innocence is inspiring and really brings the joy and excitement of the season to life.
And people were bringing children to him that he might touch them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this he became indignant and said to them, “Let the children come to me; do not prevent them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Amen, I say to you, whoever does not accept the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it.” Mark 10:13-16
I’m going to need some help on this journey, so here are a few items I may purchase to help me. If you purchase these, I make a small percentage – so thank you very much!
The Shepherd on the Search- Advent Activity Set
I LOVE this alternative to the “Elf on the Shelf”. DaySpring has created this book set so that during the Advent season, families can read the story of the shepherd’s timeless journey in a beautifully illustrated interactive children’s book, and let the fun begin every day as they hide the shepherd and children find him in a new place along the search!
Click here to purchase: The Shepherd on the Search Advent Set
A Christian Themed Advent Calendar
Click here to purchase: Nativity Advent Calendar
Fisher Price Little People Nativity Set
This toy Nativity Set was such a great investment for our family. Above is a picture of my son two years ago . . . he made the angel kiss the baby Jesus! Such a great way to talk and teach about what Christmas is and why we celebrate it. I love that these Little People are durable enough to be played with by very young children, but still enjoyed by the older ones! We have a beautiful “adult” Nativity Set, but the past couple years we have simply put out this one. When members of the scene fall, nothing breaks. That is truly an added bonus! Click here to purchase: Little People Nativity Set
The Legend of the Poinsettia
We see these plants almost as much as we see Christmas trees this time of year. What a wonderful way to talk about the season with your child by reading this book together. In Mexico, the poinsettia is called flor de la Nochebuenao which means flower of the Holy Night. This Mexican legend tells how the poinsettia came to be, through a little girl’s unselfish gift to the Christ Child. I have seen many moms showing excitement for a new tradition of wrapping 24 books before Christmas and reading one a night. This would be an excellent story to include in that tradition! Click here to purchase: The Legend Of the Poinsettia Book
Advent with Saint Teresa of Calcutta: Daily Meditations
Although I am going to love embracing the season with my son, I will need some time alone with the Lord . . . and my coffee. These daily meditations are just the right size for me. I can read it with my coffee, or take it with me to adoration (and if I can only stay for 10 or 15 minutes, this is the perfect way to guide that time in prayer). The Scripture quotes will also inspire me to pull out my prayer journal and enjoy my prayer time and rare times of quiet reflection. Click here to purchase: Daily Meditations with Saint Teresa of Calcutta
Tis the Season Devotional Kit
Reserving time to prayer journal has been quite tough for me. I really want to do it and I know it makes my soul happy! This devotional kit is just what I need to motivate and jumpstart my personal prayer time. DaySpring has many illustrated faith kits, and this one is brand new! Click here to purchase: Tis the Season Devotional Kit
Chocolate Santa Pops
Saint Nicholas Day is December 6th and this is the perfect sweet to put inside the shoes that are left out for the Jolly Saint’s visit 🙂 Plus, purchasing this product helps support The Nuns at Mount St. Mary’s. They are a cloistered order and making their candies is how they sustain their community. To support the Sisters, and to enjoy some incredible chocolate, click here to purchase! Trappistine Quality Candy
How are you getting ready? I’d love to hear!
A Beautiful Camouflaged Mess says
I had never heard of “The Shepherd on a Search” – I LIKE it!!
And, I absolutely love the Fisher Price Nativity set – I am so excited to get that out to see how my four year old responds to it this year, since he wanted to play with it long after Epiphany last year (kept asking when we would get it out again!).
I LOVE That alternative to the Elf! And we have the Little People Nativity. It’s the first thing my kids pull out each December and the last thing that gets put away after Christmas! I just love watching them play with it and talk about baby Jesus 🙂
Seriously you always have the best ideas! We love the Little People Nativity at our house. I loved Tomie dePaola growing up so I need to look into that one for the boys!
Thank you Brittany!!
I treasure the Little People Nativity because it truly was the first thing I bought when were chosen by an expectant mother. It was June (and 50% off!) and I couldn’t resist! We also love the advent calendar with chocolate. We gather around and read it (athough its kind of a bummer now that my daughter loves chocolate).
I think they make Godiva Advent Calendars – you need one just for you! Ha! I love that you are a fellow adoptive momma!! <3 xoxo Thanks you for reading and commenting!
Alicia Potvin says
Now that hubby and I are empty-nesters we have an advent calendar that has little drawers and we each wrote on a slip of paper what we love about the other and the on the 24th we write a Christmas wish for the other. It was so wonderful to remind each other what is special. I am going to keep a note about the Shepherd for future grandchildren. – Thank you.
What a beautiful way for a husband and wife to celebrate Advent together! I’m sure a lot of couples would love to do that – not just empty-nesters. Thank you so much for sharing!
Candy Hartmann says
Advent wreath, of course. I still buy an Advent calendar even though it’s just hubby and me. I like what Alicia does (above). Over the course of this week all the Fall décor will be put away and our home will be transformed into Christmas. this year I bought a big purple and pink bow to put on our outdoor wreath for Advent, then put the gold bow back on for Christmas.