Every Christmas Season, our family has an advent calendar that we open each day in the lead up to Christmas. We started it when the kids were small to help us in our focus on Jesus in this busy commercialised season. Over the years, we have added various other advent calendars – chocolate, lego creating, stickers, Jesse Tree, reading a Christmas book each day etc.
This year, we decided that we would forgo the chocolate advent calendar and make up an ‘acts of kindness’ calendar instead. I have attached a pdf copy which you are welcome to adjust to suit your family. Please just click on this link – Acts of Kindness Advent Calendar to print off a copy. Since we home educate, we have the flexibility throughout the day to go to the shops as well.
In fact, this last week, we started our acts of kindness advent calendar early and spent Tuesday morning at the shops. We bought a bag and filled it with toiletries which we then gave to the “Share the Dignity” organisation (www.sharethedignity.com.au/christmas-charity) who are distributing them to victims of domestic violence this Christmas. You can drop in filled bags to any Bunnings store or select hairdressers/ beauty salons up until this Saturday. This particularly suited Princess (14) who spends a lot of time scouring the toiletry aisle in the supermarket.
Matey (about to turn 12) is currently aiming to join the Defence Force when he graduates from school so we bought a box from the Post Office (BX2 which costs $2.40) and filled it with items to send to a Defence Force member serving in the Middle East. Matey chose a puzzle book, magazine, disposable razors, cashew nuts, lollies, small Christmas pudding, socks, tinned food and some other items etc and also included a letter and stamped self addressed envelope. As long as the total package weighs under 2kg, there is free postage. You just need to fill in a customs declaration form which the staff at the Post Office gives you to state what is inside and post it before December 8th. See http://www.defence.gov.au/Events/Christmas/support.asp for more details. The list of what to include and what not to include can be found here: https://www.malcolmturnbull.com.au/sendingacarepackage
My aim is to be more others focused and Jesus focused in this lead up to Christmas. Thus, we have printed off the Acts of Kindness Advent Calendar and are looking forward each day to focusing on how we can help others.
I encourage you as a family this Christmas to think outside the box and find some new ways of showing kindness this Christmas. Perhaps have a special family meal and brainstorm different ways you could do this. I would love to hear your ideas.