**Not that we can't be kind before then, but planned acts of kindness helped me to really think through my actions and to be intentional in what we chose to do.**
If you're thinking of doing this with your family, here are a few things I learned last year:
A. Get your children involved - our kids do these things with us and we talk about why we are doing each act. Kids love to be givers and helpers!
B. Pray for God to use you in ways you may not have expected - He may have a different idea of how you can bless others; be flexible as you watch people around you. Needs will come up and being sensitive to how others are doing can open your eyes/ears for other ways you can help.
C. Start simple - if you can't do every day, choose one day each week to participate in an act of kindness.
D. Every act of kindness is important... even if it's not acknowledged by anyone or seen by anyone else. That's an important lesson to teach our kids as well: that giving shouldn't be noticed by others every time. I only share this blog post so that someone else may be encouraged to bless others as well... the more people who spread kindness, the better!
ADVENT YEAR TWO:
1 - Bring a warm drink of coffee and some donuts to our school crossing guard
**Riley loved this one last year and wanted to do it on our first day!
2 - Tape quarters to the pop machine at work for teachers to have free pop
3 - Bring dog food and treats to our local pet shelter
4 - Write a letter to a family member that lives far away to say thank you/we love you
5 - Women's Banquet at church
6 - Holiday in the Park: choir performs and watch the light show as a family
7 - Put all the newspapers on our neighbors porches on our street and pick up trash along the way
8 - Put $$ on a students' account at school - Last year I handed the cafeteria manager an envelope and simply asked her to put the $$ onto a students' account that they thought would be most beneficial. I don't know who it went to, but it was nice to be able to help.
9 - Starbucks Gift Cards for the Bus Drivers at school
10 - LovePacs: Shop at the store and purchase enough food for one family
11 - Holiday Piano Recital
12 - Give flowers to someone who could use some cheer
13 - Letter and pictures for our mailman
14 - Send a card/letter to a child fighting cancer through this site: Hugs and Hope
15 - Buy donuts for Julia's school staff
16 - North Pole Exposure: Choir Musical
17 - Purchase gifts for Julia's and Riley's teachers
18 - Julia's Holiday Performance
19 - Pay for someone's dinner at the Texas Legends Game
20 - Watch the movie 'Elf' as a family
21 - Performance in Dallas
22 - Purchase a gift card at Target and give it to the person in line behind us
23 - Read the story of the first Christmas as a family
24 - Spend time with family and go to our Christmas Eve Service at church