Thursday, December 10, 2009

This is my favorite part of the holidays, the together times. 
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Every year we make a Gingerbread house(or train, or mini house- depending on rations and time..)
decorate cookies and take a trip to the mall to visit Santa and ride the train. This year we get to have breakfast with Santa, so the girls and I went to the mall so they could ride the train.  We have found the decorating is faster and a lot more fun if friends are invited. Aspen helped us with the Gingerbread house and Madelyn, Sophia and Olivia helped with the cookies. 

We always write letters to Santa and this year I was thrilled to participate in Macy's Believe Campaign. For every letter in their store mailboxes, a dollar is donated to the Make a Wish Foundation.  Lily and Bella both wrote their own, but I wrote a couple too for them in case Santa is too strapped for time to translate toddler scribbles.  Last time I was in the store- I picked up some for Phillip and Kiera who both wrote nice letters asking how Santa was and hoped that he was keeping warm in the North Pole. I was all tickled that they didn't go on and on about what they wanted and hoped the spirit of the season was present. I asked them if they wanted to add anything about what gifts they wanted and Kiera said- Oh I'll tell him that IN Person.  Apparently she doubts the middle-mail person. If you have time- stop by Macy's and drop a letter in the box to help more wishes come true!

A few days ago I was touched when Phillip came home from school and asked about getting one of "those ornaments on trees".  Here they are called Lokahi Trees, the trees in the malls with wish lists from children in need. Tomorrow we venture back to the mall to do some angel shopping- there were still A LOT of angels on the angel trees and it broke my heart to see so many kids asking for basic necessities for Christmas.  This time of year I am grateful for these silly furlough fridays that give me that extra bit of time to spend doing the things that matter with my kids that we usually have to cram in.  Tomorrow's lesson will be on the spirit of giving. No matter what you have, there is always someone with more or someone with much, much less. I am always amazed that those who have the least to give- whether it be time or material- are always the first to give.  I hate to say it- but I can only name a couple of gifts that I got for Christmas as a child ,but I clearly remember how magic Christmas felt. I remember the smell of cookies baking- my stomach hurting from eating too much frosting while decorating. I remember the jingle bells ringing outside stores. I can't think of a time when we weren't handed a dollar or change to slip into the red buckets. I remember worrying that the ornament shaped by my tiny hands wasn't good enough and the elation when my mom gushed over how wonderful it was.  I remember the spirit of Christmas. Now I only hope to do it justice when I pass it on to my children.


Angela said...

I love that our older kids are figuring out the Spirit of Christmas! We have adopted a needy family this year and the kids are really into helping them and are ok with having less presents for themselves under the tree! In fact, Ryan and Alyssa barely have a wish list for themselves! I was also saddened a little when the 10 year old girl we adopted had everyday items on her wish list--jeans, pj's, slippers! We miss you guys!

Tracy Heiman said...

Thanks for the Macy's tip. I can smell those cookie!

Happy Holidays,