Thursday, December 2, 2010

TodaysMama and GameStop

TodaysMama and GameStop are giving away great gifts this holiday season, and to enter their giveaway I’m sharing this meme with you.

Holiday Wish List 2010:

1. What is your holiday wish for your family?
I wish for my family to embrace the joy and hope of Christmas and carry it into our lives each and every day.

2. What is your Christmas morning tradition?
We open presents, eat Monkey Bread for breakfast, and play with our new stuff.

3. If you could ask Santa for one, completely decadent wish for yourself, what would it be?
I would love a laptop of my own and a new coffee maker. Oh, joy!

4. How do you make the holidays special without spending any money?
There is a neighborhood near us where every house on the block puts up elaborate outdoor Christmas decorations. We like to drive through each year to see the beautiful displays. We also like to decorate our own house, bake cookies, and make treats.

5. What games did you play with your family growing up?
We played lots of games growing up—Candyland, Chutes & Ladders, Sorry, Trouble, Parcheesi, Yahtzee, and card games. My mom never turned down a request to play Chinese Checkers or Scrabble. (I miss Mom!)

6. What holiday tradition have you carried on from your own childhood?
We continue lots of family traditions like hanging stockings and leaving cookies for Santa. We’ve created new family traditions, too, like opening new pjs on Christmas Eve.

7. Where would you go for a Christmas-away-from-home trip?
I’m a Southern California girl so I’d like to go almost anywhere for a white Christmas!

8. Check out GameStop and tell us, what are the three top items on your GameStop Wish List this year?
We’d love an XBOX 360/Kinect with Kinect Sports, some new Nintendo DSi games like Wipeout the Game, and some new Wii games like Disney Sing It Party Hits.

Check out the links to enter the giveaway at TodaysMama and to shop online at GameStop.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Wednesday Word: Inveterate

Part of Speech:

firmly established by long persistence; confirmed in a habit

She was an inveterate gossip and a habitual liar.

Thankful Tree

I know it’s December 1 and everyone is ready to move on to Christmas, but I have one more Thanksgiving thing to share. This year my family created our own version of a Thankful Tree. It’s a really simple, cheap, and fun fall craft for the whole family. It’s a great way to think about and share all the things for which you are grateful. You might want to consider making one with your family.

First we ripped brown paper bags (grocery and lunch bags) down the seams to open them. Then we rolled and twisted them to create the tree trunk and branches. We used packing tape to adhere the twisted pieces to the sliding glass door creating a tree form. (You could do this on a wall or on a poster board, too.) Then we printed fall leaves on colored construction paper—yellow, orange, red, green, and brown. We cut out the leaves, and each family member wrote one or more things for which he/she was thankful on each leaf. This gives younger children an opportunity to practice writing, and even the littlest ones can draw pictures. The kids added the leaves to the tree with scotch tape.

We had lots of duplicate ideas on our leaves—friends, family, food, shelter, clothing, health, freedom, etc. We kept our leaves for next year so we can add some of the little things for which we’re thankful—ice cream sundaes, naps, rainbows, hummingbirds, etc.

Cute, huh? I have to tell you that the entire family looked at me like I was crazy when we started this project, but by the end they all loved it. My husband even said that it was his favorite fall decoration.

You could easily adapt the idea for other events. How about a snowman made of snowflakes with wishes for the New Year? Get creative!

Find new ways to get your family thinking, creating, and writing. If you create something like this or have a new idea, I’d love to hear about it. Please leave a comment!

I found the inspiration for our tree on Tip Junkie {one of my favorites}, which had a link to My Insanity where Kendra gave instructions for creating a Gratitude Tree. I used an autumn leaf template from Holly at Creating Cupcakes. Thanks for the great stuff, ladies!