Friday, December 4, 2015

Friday Favorites: Christmastime is Here!

This week we've jumped right into all things Christmas! Christmas movies, Christmas books, Advent, wrapping presents, Christmas cards, Christmas shopping, you name it. It's been a fun week and such a sweet start to the season. Life can be so heartbreaking and our world can be such a scary place, but I'm especially thankful for this season of hope and celebration. We love doing all kinds of Christmas things with the kids and soaking up every bit of festivity and fun that this season brings, but the reason we celebrate is Jesus. He is the gift of Christmas. He is the hope and the light of the world. He is the reason we're here and He is what makes this season special and this life livable.

Here's a look at my faves from our week...

*This year we completed our 4th November of intentional thankfulness. I write down what the boys are thankful for every single morning for the whole month and it's a sweet little tradition they love. If I ever forgot they were quick to remind me and say Mama! We didn't tell you what we were thankful for! I wrote down their exact words every morning and never prompted them at all. It was a quick and simple little routine most mornings but it also gave us an opportunity to be intentional about gratitude and to talk about all the ways God has blessed us and that the Bible says that every good and perfect gift is from Him. Hopefully Layton will be able to participate next year!

*We loaded up the fam one night to drive over to my parents' house to see their huge light display (hopefully I can get a good picture soon!) plus cruise the rest of the neighborhood and see all the lights. Most of the families in our subdivision seem to really decorate the exterior of their homes... so we've got to capitalize on the after Christmas sales so we can be prepared for next year!

The boys LOVED seeing all of Granna and Papa's lights and our special little trip around the neighborhood. 

*Oh Christmastime how we love you. =)

*My favorite Christmas gifts ever... and 3 of my most favorite ornaments on the tree. Left to right, Garrison, Austin, Layton. 

*The beginning of the week was warm enough to get in some outside time. I decided to pull out a chair so I could read some while the boys played. (Remember all those books I placed on hold at the library that came in at once?? Haha. I'm on my 3rd one and haven't been overdue yet!) Layton played some and then wanted a chair to sit in too. Then he watched his big brothers play soccer just like he was at a game or something. Ha! It was pretty precious.

*So this year I stole an idea from a fellow blogger and decided to get the boys Pottery Barn Christmas pillowcases! The sheets are crazy expensive and probably never gonna happen (ha) so we went with pillowcases instead. A compromise my sweet husband agreed to. =) The big boys' reactions were PRICELESS. They were just thrilled and sooo excited. And mama's heart was happy. The Christmas spirit sure is special. 

Of course we had to get a "sleeping" picture too. Haha! Layton isn't pictured with his because he won't pose for a picture in his bed, but he seems to really like his too. =)

*On Tuesday we started our Advent calendar! This is a favorite for my big boys and a sweet tradition for us as a family. They take turns opening the little door and getting out a magnetic piece of the nativity scene each morning. I also put in a Bible verse from the Christmas story, (in order, taken from both Luke and Matthew), inside each little door and so Garrison has been reading that to us every morning. It's the best way to start our day and a great reminder for us as we await Jesus's birthday.

*Speaking of Advent... This book was a Christmas gift last year and I've waited all year to read it. It is sooo good. I can't recommend it enough. I'm using it every morning for my quiet time and love it. I've looked forward to it every morning this week. I see myself doing this every single year. It's just really, really good.

This weekend is going to be a little busy. Terrell and his dad will be working in our backyard most of the day tomorrow on a Christmas surprise for the boys while I try to finish up all of our Christmas shopping. Then on Sunday after church the Children's Ministry is taking a little field trip to the nursing home to sing Christmas carols and perform during their little Sunday service they have there. Even though it will be a little full, we're looking forward to extra time together and maybe a Christmas movie or two, too. =) Happy Friday!!

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