Monday, November 17, 2014

Celebrating Christmas With A Jesse Tree

Every year I try to simplify Christmas. I crave a peaceful and tranquil Christmas. I really want to wake up on Christmas morning not feeling exhausted from the process that is Christmas. I don't want to be doing a mad dash to the grocery store on Christmas Eve because I forgot some ingredient for Christmas Day lunch. I don't want to be angry and irritated during the Christmas Eve service at church because I'm thinking of a gazillion things that I still haven't done. Anybody with me??? 

This year I really wanted to draw all of our focus in to the history behind this Christmas season. I want us all to deeply understand Christmas and it's how's and why's. The more we understand God's purpose in giving us His one and only Son, the more Christmas can be less about us and more about God. I need less about us and all the junk that becomes Christmas, don't you?



We've always used an advent calendar to celebrate but the Jesse Tree allows for an understanding of Christmas through a lesson and then adding an ornament to your tree each day of December. The Jesse Tree gives us the opportunity to celebrate Jesus' birthday with an understanding of the why's. I purchased Ann Voskamp's The Greatest Gift to help me to fully understand how to use a Jesse Tree. 


There are lots of other books out there for all ages, but her book in particular really spoke to me. It is family friendly so it's good for all the ages we have here in our house and she gives you access to files so you can print the ornaments that will go along with each night's devotional and lesson. You will begin on December 1st and conclude on Christmas Day. You can go all out and buy a ready-made Jesse Tree and ornaments or make a simple one like we will be using. I've put some branches in a pitcher and attached some little book page stars to some of the branches. Each evening, as we read a lesson, we'll place it's corresponding ornament onto our little tree.


Ann even has a YouTube video that explains the Jesse Tree in detail. 
Celebrating with the Jesse Tree is just one more way that our family will be reminding ourselves, in the midst of a very commercialized holiday season, that GOD should be our focus this Christmas. Repeat with me, God should be our only focus. I've got to get rid of all the stress that I put on myself unnecessarily, and FOCUS only on the reason for Christmas- Christ.

I'd be oh so happy if you would join our family this Christmas and celebrate using a Jesse Tree! I'd love to hear how you are celebrating this Christmas! Until next time........AE


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8 comments:

  1. I hope to find my book in the mailbox this week. Thank you for telling me about it. You were so sweet to assume that I do Christmas "right". Well, that encouraged me to do Christmas right. I'm not sure what this means for us. I do know that young parents should not start off by filling up all of the space under the tree. I'm afraid that many of us have conditioned our children to expect a mountain of gifts on Christmas morning. I grew up this way in my home and at my grandparents' home. It can be difficult for the parents and the children to ease out of this expectation.

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    1. Believe me when I say I know how hard it is to back pedal out of what Christmas and all it's excessive trimmings has become! But, each year we get better and better and the kids are so resilient. Not once has mine said, "hey, this is waaaay less than we got last year". Our Christmas' are so full of celebrating with others in our home and making hand-made gifts, that they don't even notice that Christmas day has less stuff. They really do feel so happy and joy-filled with the whole season. Probably by the time grand kids come along, I'll have this Christmas thing all figured out ;)

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  2. I'm super excited to celebrate Advent this year. Our son was born on the first Sunday is Advent so it extra special in our family.

    Last year my hubbie and I actually wrote a book together, Bible Characters for Advent, and this year started MyJesseTree to give families free printables, ebook, craft ideas etc for their Jesse Tree. I'm super excited now that our son is almost two to actually be reading with him each night, and decorating our Jesse Tree.

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    1. Oh, all of that sounds just wonderful! I'm really looking forward to December 1st! Thanks so much for stopping by tonight! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

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  3. What a sweet idea! Pinned and tweeted. Lou Lou Girls

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    1. Thanks so much Kimberly! So glad you could visit!

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  4. Awesome idea.Your tree looks rustic and beautiful!

    Thanks for linking up with my party :)
    xx
    Mila

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    1. And you've been featured :)
      Have a happy New Year!

      xx
      Mila

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