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Don't forget to make some memories!

A Lovely Idea

Posted by on Nov 21, 2017 in A LASTING FAITH, Blog, Prayers and Promises | 0 comments

A lovely idea is rapidly becoming a tradition for many families, and the kids love this one. We haul out the Christmas tree in early October (but you could still do this for Thanksgiving and until you’re ready to decorate your Christmas tree!) and string lights and garlands of artificial autumn leaves on its branches. The photo I’ve shared is a starting point. Let your imagination take you from there, adding artificial fall flowers, pinecones, birds’ nests, and feathers, with other things you find on a walk through the woods. Now for the Advent of Thanksgiving journey. What’s special to you and your family? Because my father died this year, we collected photographs of special memories with him, a sweet time of thanksgiving. Then we used medium-sized clothespins to attach them to a piece of twine draped around the...

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Prepare for Advent-ure

Posted by on Nov 20, 2017 in A LASTING FAITH, Blog, Family Do-votions | 0 comments

  As Christmas draws near there’s more than gift lists to prepare. We need to prepare our hearts. One way is with an advent wreath. Advent begins December 3rd, so prepare ahead by making plans to focus on Jesus during December. It can be fun to light an advent wreath each day. Each candle has a name and meaning that inspire us to act on the word.   Week 1 Hope Read about the hope of Jesus coming in prophecies: Isaiah 9:7 the prophecy of the savior to come from the line of David Micah 5:2 the prophecy of Christ’s birth in Bethlehem Isaiah 7:14 the prophecy of the virgin birth Hosea 11:1 the prophecy of Mary and Joseph fleeing to Egypt with Jesus Isaiah 61:1 and Isaiah 35:4-6 the prophecies that Jesus would perform miracles Bring hope to...

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Displaying Thankfulness with a Pumpkin

Posted by on Nov 17, 2017 in A HAPPY HOME, Blog, Smarts-n-Crafts | 0 comments

Welcome to Smarts-n-crafts, where you’ll find smart activities to do with your children—no matter what age—and fun craft projects for rainy days or just for giggles. You’ll be provided with step-by-step instructions, a variety of use ideas, approximate time of activity, and an age-tested skill level. Let’s get started! We’ve got just 18 summers to create lots of memories with our loved ones. This month, our focus shifts to people and things we’re thankful for as we celebrate Thanksgiving on November 23rd.  Today, we’ll create a simple but meaningful centerpiece for our holiday table that’s sure to be a hit with friends and family who are gathered around our table. What you’ll need: One or more pumpkins (try to find ones with a smooth skin) Two Sharpies, medium point Bible Skill level: Little Helping Hands, ages 2-5: Smaller hands...

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Developing Stilled Hearts and Hands

Posted by on Nov 16, 2017 in Blog, Bonus Days | 0 comments

If your kids are like the 3rd graders I teach at church every week, then they never stop! They love to run around and play together, laugh together, and talk about all sorts of topics, from tv shows to Christmas treats. Their hearts and minds seem to race with excitement, eager to explore the world around them. The result of this non-stop energy is often non-stop chatter. Asking children in this animated state to be still, quiet, and focused can be quite the challenge, because the playground is simply more exciting than prayer time. But times of quiet reflection are very important to your child’s physical, mental, and spiritual growth, and we can foster these times with the truth of Scripture. As you talk to your children about the life of Jesus, consider emphasizing the many times that Jesus...

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I Am the Child

Posted by on Nov 15, 2017 in Blog, Bonus Days | 2 comments

“I don’t deserve this,” I muttered to myself as I scraped peanut butter from the chair where my toddler had lovingly smeared it earlier that day. Next up: the crushed crackers that had been ground into the carpet, followed by the freshly folded laundry that remained freshly folded for all of 45 seconds before it was hurled across the room by tiny hands. As I bent over the peanut butter chair, my archnemesis, Discontentment, took a seat on the throne of my mind, while Bitterness idled nearby, examining her fingernails and casually starting an all-too-familiar conversation: Bitterness: Look at her, is she pathetic or what? Discontentment: You’re telling me. Spent the whole day getting screamed at. By a two-year-old. Bitterness: And did you see how she never even put that baby down today? Ha! Her whole day, dictated by...

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