Monday, November 1, 2010

The Heart Of Christmas ♥ Homemade Gifts ♥ Keeping CHRIST in Christmas!

Click to see other posts in this blog carnival or add your own!

Every year as the weather gets wetter, the leaves get brighter, and the air gets a bite of chill to it, I start thinking about my favorite time of year: Christmas! I remember my childhood Christmases. We were poor in money but rich in love and what I remember about Christmas isn't Santa or Presents, it's the SMELL of cinnamon and pine, the beautiful nativity set, the inspiring music, the sound of family gathered, the taste of cranberry sauce, and laying underneath the tree looking up through the branches at the lights and just soaking in the joy. That's what I want to pass on to my kids! Not greed or materialism. Not Santa-worship. Not cartoons and movies that have no foundation on The Rock. Every year I want to make homemade things as gifts but get distracted and then don't get anything finished in time. Every year since becoming an adult, despite my best intentions to keep the focus where it belongs and not get lost in the stress; somewhere along the line I loose my focus and have a panic attack, start resenting the to-do and to-buy lists, forget what it's really all about. I always need a reminder to get me back on track. I need to make it a point to not get caught up in worrying about making everything perfect and forget that the things aren't what makes Christmas CHRISTmas. What makes Christmas CHRISTmas is keeping our eyes on Jesus.
"But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you." Matthew 6:33
Last year I decided what better way to stay motivated and focused on the TRUE heart of CHRISTmas than a fun interactive bloggy carnival with all of you! What do you say? Want to join the fun?

Welcome to The Heart Of Christmas 2010 link up! There will be ONE linkup for the whole season here in this post, at the bottom. Every time you have a relevant post you may link it here, any day from now until January 7th. You must link back to this post in each of your participating posts. You may link back in text, or by including the button in the post. You may add the button to your blog's sidebar if you would like to help draw more participation, but it's not required. You may link up old posts, even posts you linked up last year, as long as they contain a link back to this post: i.e. the updated button code (can't use last years- it goes to last years linky which is closed! Must use this years from this post!) or post link to get visitors back to THIS 2010 linky in case they wish to view the other entries and/or participate.

What to put in your posts (you can use any one, several, or all of these ideas in each post):
-Something about how you stay focused on Jesus.
-Something you have bought/made as a gift for someone, or a link to an idea for a project you would LIKE to make for a gift. Don't forget to give credit where credit is due for patterns, ideas, tutorials, etc.
-A Christmas recipe.
-Talk about one of your family traditions, why you do it and what it means.
-A sweet Christmas memory.
-Anything else that is related to the HEART of Christmas, having a sweet and thankful spirit, handmade with love, giving, helping the needy, avoiding getting stressed out, avoiding focus on money and gifts, seeing Jesus as the bringer of every good and perfect gift, etc.
-Check out last year's entries for more ideas!

We want to avoid posts that encourage complaining and stressing, focus on money/Santa/gifts (commercialism), and "keeping up with the Jones'."

INSTRUCTIONS:
I will try to post a Heart of CHRISTmas post at least once a week and link it. You may link a post every week, or every day, or just once or twice. You know I'd love it if you linked often of course... Lol! But I know you can't post if you don't have something you feel like posting about. ;) So just join in when you want to. :) There is not a specific day of the week to do this. Just come here and link up each time you have a qualifying post.
1. Write a post that falls within the guidelines above. (Or you can use an old post of like a Christmas craft or recipe or gift idea.)
2. Include this button (or a text link back here) in your post. If you would like, you can put it in your blog's sidebar too to draw more people to share with us. Use the code provided which links the button back here so people can browse the other participating posts.
Click to see other posts in this blog carnival or add your own!
3. Add your post to the MckLinky below so others can find it from here! :) Please include the name of your blog and most importantly the title of your post in the "Name" field when linking. LINK DIRECTLY TO THE SPECIFIC POST, not just to your blog in general. For example my first link will not go merely to http://everypreciousjoy.blogspot.com/ - it will instead be a specific link to a specific post; http://everypreciousjoy.blogspot.com/2010/11/heart-of-christmas-1.html. Make sense? Link to the post, not the whole blog.
4. Browse the other posts in the MckLinky list to see what others are doing for CHRISTmas 2010. We all love comments so if you'd like to leave some love for the other participants we'd be ever so excited! :D

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