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After many years of switching between three Advent devotionals, we are using a new resource, Prepare Him Room: Celebrating the Birth of Jesus by Marty Machowski. Our church gave copies to all the families, which was very nice of them. Thank you!
In keeping with my “embrace the imperfect” theme this year, I like that it only has 3 lessons per week. It also has a story, but I already plan to skip that. There are also activities that will also probably get skipped. I do appreciate all the effort people go into making Advent devotionals interactive and enjoyable for small children. Here’s a secret: skipping the extra activities is totally okay. Heck, if you have little kids, keeping them from setting the house on fire with the advent candles will be excitement enough.
You can also do a Jesse Tree, which is really great for little kids and doesn’t start until December 1, so you’ve got a couple of days to get your act together. In fact, you don’t have to do an “official” Advent program at all. Or daily devotionals or what have you. At the end of this post are links to previous posts with all kinds of Advent resources, including simple scripture readings. Find what fits you and your family, and adjust it as needed. The point of Advent isn’t to complete some devotional, but to prepare your heart for the celebration of Christ’s birth. No extraneous crafts of activities required! /end rant.
Ahem. If you’re doing the Prepare Him Room devotional, I’ve created a YouTube playlist of the music. So far, it just has the first week, but I plan on adding as we go.
I’ve included the carols in the YouTube playlist, but might I recommend not using them? There’s nothing quite so wonderful as singing a cappella with your kids, and familiar Christmas carols are a great place to start if you’re not used to it. Below are links to PDFs of the sheet music.
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However you mark the Advent season, I hope it’s peaceful and blessed and you don’t set your house on fire with your candles. Happy Christmas!