Topic: Favorite Links
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Monday, 1 December 2008
Friday, 28 November 2008
I know that I have been blogging a lot about different companies that I have affiliated with and I want you to know that making money is not the primary reason for this blog. However, this blog is fairly new (just over a month old) and I am constantly looking for companies that meet my goal of strengthening the family hence the reason for so many announcements of late. This is, also, the holiday shopping season and I want you to be aware of some shopping opportunities with retailers that offer good wholesome products. Below are some links to "Black Friday" sales that are currently going on. Some of these are affiliates where we get a percentage of the sale when you link to that company through our blog. As I said before, money making is not the primary purpose of my blog, but as full-time missionaries, we could always use the extra money. The links to all of my affiliations and other companies that I support are located to the left of my blog. Thank's for shopping with these companies and again have a Blessed Christmas.
Black Friday doesn't have to mean Bleak Season
As I am writing this, my wife, Sarah, and my mother-in-law are taking advantage of "Black Friday". This seems to have turned into a Thanksgiving holiday tradition for them. For the past few years they have awakened and left the house by 4:00 am to take advantage of all of the pre-Christmas sales. And, they have had a BLAST. They enjoy people watching, enjoy the prices, but most of all they enjoy each other. They vow not to get caught up in fighting for the last toy, haggling over prices, and the general stress, and just go to have fun and look for bargains.
Four in the morning is just too early for me, I need my beauty sleep, but I do recall past enjoyable Christmas shopping with my family. I remember as a child I would make out my Christmas list while looking at the Sears Christmas catalog and then shopping with my family and enjoying the festive displays. In the little town where I grew up, we actually had a multi-floor department store with a real elevator man that would announce "going up" or "going down". I may be getting older, but that was an usual sight even in my day. Later, I recall a shopping experience with my sister, Carol. We were having a snack in the mall, food court when she suddenly looked up and announced "Tim, your getting gray hair". Carol always knows how to make people feel good. Really, though, these are all pleasent memories of shopping with my family.
Although I agree that Christmas has since become extremely commercialized, and many families are forgetting the true meaning of this Holy Season, we don't need to throw the baby out with the bath water (besides it's much too cold for the little guy ). Many people go to the extreme and have nothing to do with shopping but the holiday season can still bring good family experiences. Here are a few ideas that may help turn holiday shopping into a fun family time.
1. Don't neglect the many charities that are out and about during the holiday season. Choose wisely, but let your children see you (or have your children do it themselves) putting change in the charity buckets for the less fortunate.
2. Choose an angel from an angel tree or choose a local family and go out shopping for them. Have your children pick the toys out for the kids. Use it as a teaching opportunity.
3. Instead of focusing on themselves, involve your children in shopping for their siblings. Maybe have them make out the wish lists for their brothers and sisters rather than for themselves.
4. Teach your children patience and politeness (or at least try) while shopping. There is so much pushing, shoving, and grumpiness during the shopping season. A pleasent smile and "thank you" go a long way when you are a tired, weary, sales clerk (I know, I've been one of them).
5. Focus on the religious displays and themes in stores. Yes, some stores, malls and shopping centers still have them. I know that Santa Clause and selfishness are still the chosen themes these days, but there are still some opportunities to discuss the true meaning of Christmas with your young ones.
Enjoy your children while you're out and about this year. Remember the fun times you had when you were younger and don't let this be a bleak shopping season. If you have any ideas on how to make Christmas shopping a more pleasent experience for families, leave a comment or send an email and I will share it in a later post. Merry Christmas!
Wednesday, 26 November 2008
I'm Really Excited About This One!
Topic: Favorite Links
I remember when my parents would join a book of the month or record of the month club for me. I would wait excitedly for the next delivery. I enjoyed the books, records, etc. that I got, but I would have loved this club. KraftyKid is a craft of the month club where you can choose how many times a month that you recieve a craft, what type of craft, even if it's for a preschooler or older child. Everything is sent to you in the mail. No more hunting around for an age appropriate craft and then trying to gather all of the materials. KraftyKid is a Christian company, so you can choose all Bible crafts or regular crafts, and you can be assured that there will be no objectionable crafts that will be sent to you. You can unsubsribe at any time, and they have trial kits that you can order. There are also some kits that you can buy individually if you don't want to join one of their clubs. You can even sign up for their free monthly, printable crafts sent to you by email. We have started to do a lot of crafts as a family, and are very excited about the Family Advent night crafts that we are going to do. I'm thinking about subscribing to one of KraftyKid's craft clubs and having family craft nights all throughout the year! It looks like they would make great Christmas gifts as well. What about for grandma and grandpa for when the kids come for a visit. Or for your favorite babysitter. Or...well, you get the idea. Have Fun!
Tuesday, 25 November 2008
Serious Disclaimer - I have made a promise to you that I will only post links on my blog that lead to sites that promote family values or articles of a Christian family nature. I have also promised that I would only affiliate with companies that provide wholesome, family based items or services. I want you to know that I still hold to that promise. The company that I use to host my blog (Angelfire) allows me to write my blog for free with the understanding that they will post links to companies, of their choice, at the top of my page. Unfortunately, they do not always adhere to the same guidelines that I do. Although their links are not the worst, I have recently noticed advertisements to companies that I would not link to if I had the choice. The companies and sites that I support will always be linked to either within one of my blog entries, or over to the left of my page in my links section. The links at the top of my page (above the refrigerator) are companies that Angelfire links to. Someday I hope to be able to upgrade to a level where I will control all links on my blog. Until that time, please forgive me for any offensive links that may show up from time to time at the top of my page.
Not So Serious Disclaimer - I have no idea how my blog refrigerator got deformed. It somehow happened when I was trying to cut and paste an article from another website. I do not promote the mistreatment of blog refrigerators. Please do not report me to PETBR (People for the Ethical Treatment of Blog Refrigerators). I hope to fix the problem as soon as possible.
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