Monday, October 31, 2011

Clutter and Christmas

I was pondering this week about Clutter and Christmas.

We love stuff. We fill our lives with stuff, because we think it will bring happiness. We shop and buy more stuff that eventually fades and breaks and is thrown away. Stuff clutters our homes and creates organization problems. Where are we going to store all our stuff?

Christmas is already on the shelves in every shop. You are already thinking about what you are getting for your family. Some of you are preparing for the Black Friday sales coming up next month, or are looking through online stores to find the perfect thing for that perfect someone.

Is it all worth it?

There are a few things that we are going to do differently this year for Christmas, to prevent more clutter (as well as reduce waste) and bring more Christ into our lives.
Giving instead of Getting.
Sharing instead of more Stuff.
I urge you to ponder it for yourself, and share with us any further ideas you may have.

  • We ask the boys to go through the toys they own, and find ones that they no longer play with that can be donated to children in need.
  • We are giving them "experiences". This year we are going to teach them to ski!
  • Creating long lasting memories by taking old VCR tapes and turning them into DVDs to watch together. Our boys love nothing better than to see their dad when he was their age.
  • Each member of the family picks a name and has to make or do something for that person on Christmas day.
  • We use cloth Christmas bags for gifts instead of tape and wrap. 
  • We do an advent...but not with candy...we put in one thing we are going to do that day.
  • Look at the world vision gift guide. You choose the card, and they choose the gift. There are all sorts of amazing ways to help. Buy a goat, chickens, school supplies, soccer balls, toys, medicine...
  • Create an online Christmas card to send out to our family and friends.
  • When I was young, my family would all go out carolling on Christmas eve to our neighbours, it is something I miss, and want to start with my own family this year.
  • Contact your Church Authority, or the local Christmas Bureau and adopt a family for Christmas. You get to have all the fun shopping, but you are buying for someone else.

I have to be honest, I am going to do some Black Friday shopping this year. I have never been before, and I am kind of excited for the adventure of waking up early and seeing what all the craziness is about. And please, don't think that we do not give each other gifts, we do...and Santa still comes of well as grandparents!

I am just trying to make our Christmas more meaningful and searching for a way to have peace instead of stress during the month of December!

If you have any thoughts, please share them.

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