Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Christmas Around the World: Italy

Hi y'all!  I hope you are all enjoying the Christmas season!  I have been trying to find ways to use what we have to make Christmas special and meaningful this year.  One way is by curling up each night in front of the tree under a blanket with the children and reading one or two Christmas books before our devotional.  When we are through, we take turns picking out a Christmas hymn to sing together.  Another way I have tried to make it special is by doing Christmas Around the World.  I spent a day or two last week researching countries and traditions to find activities and facts I thought the children might enjoy.  This is also an activity I did last year.  The children loved the activities, most of which were ornaments.  This year, I thought I might focus more on traditions and food.

Our first country was Italy.  We read and talked about Italy being the origins of the popularity of the Nativity.  I had saved our main Nativity just for this night.  After reading, I let my little girl pull it out and set it up by herself.  Christmas was seeing the smile on her face and wonder in her eyes as we got to talk about the night Jesus was born.  Precious memories!

I let her put all the figures right where she wished, and I think she did a beautiful job.  We both got tickled when, while cleaning up, she looked at the box I had intentionally placed behind me and discovered she had set it up just like the picture!  While setting it up, we talked about how the wise men weren't actually at the manger the night Jesus was born.  We had read Follow the Star the night before, so it worked out really well to help her understand they had to journey a long way after they saw the star.

Tomorrow's post will focus on France and the new twelve days of Christmas advent activity I have added this year. 

So what do you do to make Christmas special and meaningful in your home?  I would love to hear!

Until we meet again, may you be blessed!

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