An Amazing Advent Experience

An Amazing Advent Experience

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We’re on day #2 of the Advent season, and the tree is up!  It’s bright and lovely and I can’t wait to start filling it with ornaments from our Truth in the Tinsel book. This will be our third year doing the projects, but the first year I think my son (now age 2) will really begin to appreciate the stories behind the ornaments.

Created by Amanda from the blog, OhAmanda, this e-book is a super creative way to teach your kids about God and Scripture.

In her introduction, she shares the history of the book, which goes like this:

When my daughter was just a year old, I bought her an Advent Calendar book. Each day, she’d open a tiny flap in the back and then we’d read the corresponding page in the book. The first day the book instructed us to make a Christmas ornament to go along with the story. We did (I think it was made out of construction paper and had some stickers slapped on it) and my daughter was in love! Every single day of December she wanted to make an ornament. However, the book didn’t continue with ornaments each day, so we made some up ourselves! They were mainly made from paper, glue, markers and maybe a ribbon if I could scrounge one up.

We had so much fun making a little craft together during that Christmas season. What was even more fun is that my little bitty girl started understanding the Christmas story. She’d talk (or babble) about Mary, Joseph, and Jesus.

Amanda goes on to tell how she tried a few new things over the next few years, but she and her daughter always returned to the Christmas ornaments, because of their story value.  As my kids grow older (and become more interested in toy aspect of Christmas), I am especially interested in ways to make Christmas meaningful for them.

Won’t Break the Bank!

As I opened up Truth in Tinsel, I was so impressed with all the super cute and easy ideas.  I especially love that most people will already have most of the supplies on hand already.  Even if you had to go out and buy things, the cost for making everything in this book would probably be under $10 and you would have some truly wonderful memories.

Up for a Challenge?

We’re really into crafting right now (and am constantly getting sucked into the Pinterest vortex).  With Amanda’s book, I now have 24 simple crafts that all tie into the Christmas story and I couldn’t be more excited about it!  She also issued a challenge to “give” December to your kids by participating in the crafts and Scripture every day.  I’ll take the challenge!  How about you?

Good for Children’s Ministry Too!

Another great way to use this book is in your Children’s Ministry during the down time of the Christmas play practice.  If you’re in kidmin, you know this problem all too well.  What do you do with the kids who aren’t actively practicing?  Or with guests for that matter?  You want something that’s going to be engaging, but isn’t going to suck up too much man-power, or require a ton of set-up or clean-up. Truth in Tinsel is a perfect solution!  There is even a specific church curriculum you can check out!  Kids will be engaging in the Christmas story, but will also be readily available to practice when their part comes up. Fabulous.

My Favorite Parts

Want to hear my favorite parts about the book?  I’ll tell you a few, but I don’t want to give it all away!  Of course, I love the fact that each craft has a corresponding Scripture passage or story.  I also love the “do more together” feature.  This is perfect if you’ve a few extra minutes one day and want to make a really good memory with your kids.  I also love that the crafts are designed for the younger set, and there are parts of each ornament that even a toddler can participate in.

Some of my favorite crafts?

  • Mary and Elizabeth who have pop-dots for their pregnant bellies!
  • The city of Bethlehem made out of an egg carton.
  • The temple made out of an old Christmas card
  • The scented ornament made out of homemade dough.

Does it seem like too much?

Don’t think you have enough time to do it all?  Amanda has a “just the basics” schedule with only 6 of the most important ornaments!  Even if you miss a few days, it’s no big deal.  Just pick out your favorites and do what you can.  There are also printable ornaments if you have an especially busy season this year. Just print and color as you discuss the day’s scripture or story.

Get Yours Today!

So what are you waiting for?  Head on over to Amanda’s website, and snag your copy today!
Truth in the Tinsel

P.S.  If you’ve got little ones and aren’t sure they are ready for this crafting project, check out some adaptations for tiny hands and short attention spans on the Truth in Tinsel site.   

Parts of this post were published in November of 2011 on Growing Kids Ministry.  You can find the original post here.

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