Today, the word is Tradition.
This time of year is full of all kinds of traditions. From hanging ornaments on the tree, to baking Christmas cookies, to lighting the Advent candle at church or in your home. It seems like you can't do anything without a "we always do X" or "that's how we've always done it".
But I'd like to talk about another tradition that my family has been partaking in for a few years now. Adopting an Angel Tree child from the Salvation Army.
|From Salvation Army website|
You can usually spot these tags on a Christmas Tree in shopping malls, at Wal-mart, or maybe at a local business. I wrote a little bit about our our experience last year, but my family has been doing this since my daughter was born 4 years ago.
The premise is pretty basic. The tag lists a child in need, their age, clothing sizes, and toys/interests they may have. You buy the child 2 outfits and 2 toys if possible, although 1 and 1 are ok too. The Salvation Army supplements clothing and/or toys for the child from their other gift drives during December, if necessary.
Typically, we've always chosen a younger kid. They're just easier and cheaper to buy for. This year though, I felt like we should give a little more. The older kid's tags are always left until the last because their clothing and interests are generally more expensive. Sad, but true. So this year, I picked a 16 year old boy who seems to be interested in art and drawing. He asked for a sketch pad and charcoal pencils. And duct tape - odd but easy enough.
It's been our tradition to go shopping as a family for our Angel Tree Child. As Emily gets older, she is starting to kind of get the whole idea, but I think we're probably still a few years off from her really understanding that we're shopping for a child in need. A child that we'll never meet, but one that will have a smile on their face come Christmas morning. Hopefully, in part, because of us.
My little family is not rich. If my husband or I lost one of our jobs today, we'd really have to do some scrambling for a bit. But we've been so blessed in many ways. We are comfortable. We have a comfortable home. We have food on our table, love in our home, and warmth in our hearts. Why shouldn't we give to someone less fortunate?
So while we have the fun traditions to embrace this time of year, we'll also take part in the tradition of giving to others.
What are some of your favorite traditions? Link up and tell us about it!