Monday, November 21, 2011

25 names of Christ for 25 days of Christmas

found at:

Hello I Am Momma fans! I'm Kirstin, half of the sister team that blogs at kojodesigns, and I am beyond thrilled to be here today! We lovelovelove I Am Momma Hear Me Roar- Cheri's ideas are unique, there's tons of Boy-Goodness around here, and Wake Up Wednesdays is genius. But you're here, so you already know how fabulous Cheri's blog is! Loving this place so much makes it even more fun to be a part of Cheri's CHRISTmas series... 

 My sister, Jordan, and I grew up in a home full of fabulous Christmas traditions. Looking back, my favorite traditions are the ones that reinforce the meaning of CHRISTmas as the celebration of the birth of Christ the Savior. I love having that legacy of meaningful family traditions. And as our kiddos get older, I'd love to have the season leading up to Christmas be full of meaning, too!

This box of twenty five ornaments, each bearing one of the names of Christ, is one of those traditions! We'll hang one on our tree each day of December as one way to learn more about Jesus and celebrate His birth.

To make a box of advent ornaments with your family, you'll need- -a pile of twenty five ornaments (we used big clear ones, small plastic clear ones, plain wooden and ceramic ones, and a few random shapes [a star and a lion]) -some kid-friendly ornament decor (paint, crayons, glitter, jewel stickers, trim/notions, pipe cleaners, pom poms) -a not-so-kid-friendly Sharpie -ornament hangers or twine.

To make our ornaments, first we found a list of Jesus's names (here). The list also includes biblical references so that we can look up the passages each time we hang an ornament. And we narrowed to these 25 names- King of Kings, The Vine, The Word, Lion of Judah, Lamb of God, Messiah, Savior, Alpha and Omega, Light of the World, Redeemer, Bright and Morning Star, I AM, The Good Shepard, Ancient of Days, Bread of Life, Living Water, Emmanuel, Prince of Peace, Rock of Ages, Jehovah, The Truth and the Life, The Great Physician, The Lord of Glory, The Rose of Sharon, Lily of the Valley.

Then Burke and I set to work, making ornaments. He's three, so the joint ornament decorating was limited at best. Think paint splashing, glitter pouring, pom pom pushing, jewel bedazzling. Limited, but fun (and funny!).

After the decorating, I'd add the name of Burke's choosing to the ornament with a Sharpie. And, twenty-five names later, our little box of advent ornaments was finished.

In case you are wondering which ornaments received the honor of "Most Likely to Be Remade Next Year," there they are. Oh, Lion of Judah and Lamb of God ornaments. You are certainly the ugly ducklings of the crowd. But Burke loves you, so I love you.

I can. not. wait. to incorporate these into our family CHRISTmas tradition list.  Thanks for having us Cheri! What a fantastic series. 

And I Am Momma friends, come on by kojodesigns any time to say hi! Merry CHRISTmas!

advent calender idea from Twin Dragon Designs

I am so excited to be back at the CSI Project!
And truly, I couldn’t wait another minute to share this Random Acts of Kindness Advent Calendar with you.
My name is Heather and my little corner of the blog-o-sphere is Twin Dragonfly Designs.  I am a Program Coordinator with a passion for Inspiring Creativity.  If you pull up a cozy chair, grab a mug of hot chocolate and browse around awhile you will find;  crazy party ideas, tried and true recipes, epic craft projects and tutorials for just about all of it.  Oh and did I mention?  I have twin, four year old boys {so they’re involved in pretty much everything}.
{Random Acts of Kindness} is a concept that is near and dear to my heart.  I have worked with young children my entire life and one of the teaching tools that I have always used is Random Acts of Kindness.  Primarily children learn about service to others and empathy through fun, interactive tasks.  I’ll explain more later.  But first, isn’t this Advent Calendar cute?!?
I created 24 ornaments {with pockets for our RAK tasks}, clipped them to numbered clothes pins and strung them on a piece of twine.  Here’s how:
I started with two cream sweaters that I found at the thrift store.  Then I traced 8 hearts, 8 stars and 8 trees onto the knit sweater and did the same to the fleece sweater {I ended up with 48 shapes in total}.  If you are interested in my star/heart/tree pattern let me know and I will include it on my blog.  I cut out all of the shapes.  
Next I matched up my shapes {ie. a knit sweater heart with a fleece heart} to create 24 ornaments in total.  I cut a little square of fleece and sewed one onto each of the fleece shapes to create a pocket.  Then I pinned the right sides of my knit and fleece shapes together.
At this point I also pinned a loop of ribbon between the pieces to act as my hanger.
Then I sewed the two pieces together {leaving a 1″ – 2″ hole for inverting}.  Then I inverted my ornament so the right sides were out, stuffed it with batting and sewed my hole closed {Can I confess? I was not looking forward to hand sewing 24 holes closed so I used my hot glue gun ~ so much faster!  I just can’t really throw them in the wash}.  Finally I stitched a button onto each ornament.  The pocket in the back hid my knot and stitch work.
Now all that is left is to add our Random Acts of Kindness tasks for December.  We started doing a RAK Advent Calendar last year and the boys really got it.  You know?
I love that we give in service to our community as a family with these activities.  And really teach our children that it’s not about what we getduring the holidays but what we give.
Here are some of the tasks that we did last year:
{keep in mind these are uber simplified for toddlers}
Share a special toy with your brother
Say hello and smile at everyone you meet today
Paint a picture for GG
Put money in the salvation army cup
Invite a friend over for dinner
Find the home with the best Christmas lights and bring them a thank you card
Take in someones garbage cans
Leave kind notes for daddy all over the house
Call Meme and tell her that you love her
Draw a picture of the nativity
Make a gift for your brother
Deliver gifts to preschool teacher
Help mommy carry in groceries
Draw a picture on a card and leave it for the mail man
Decorate cookies and deliver them to a friend/ person in need
Make an ornament for Grandma
Sing Christmas carols
Compliment a stranger
Visit someone elderly
Help mommy wrap gifts
Help clear the table after dinner
Give doggy treats to Max.
Film a movie, thanking Jesus
I made scalloped circles with my Cuttlebug, numbers with my Cricut and glued them to wooden clothes pins.  I’m thinking of having the boys hang each one of these on the Christmas tree after we have completed each task.  What do you think?  I’ll let you know how it goes!