I love the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Whatever your faith, at its best, the season allow us to carry the sense of abundance and gratitude we tap into around the Thanksgiving table with us through the end of the year. But if we neglect this foundation of thankfulness, it is easy to lose the beauty of this season.
As I look at my sweet, blank slate of a babe, I want the Advent season to be full or wonder and anticipation. I want her to associate December with family, friends, and warmth. I want her to know and understand she is blessed beyond measure.
That is why I was particularly excited when she and I were invited to join a group of mamas and kiddos last week to assemble "blessing bags." The concept - gathering small essentials to share with those in need - was new to me, but I loved the idea of including my daughter in a practical, hands-on service activity simple enough for her to participate in and one that would hopefully plant a seed of giving back during this time of year.
So I bundled up the babe for a stroll to our neighborhood hardware store to pick up hand and foot warmers, then joined the other families for assembly. Together we packaged the warmers along with granola bars, bottles of water, toothbrushes and toothpaste, tissues, chapstick, and cough drops. Each item by itself seemed almost trivial, but when finished, the bags offered the promise of some respite - however temporary - from a cold, hungry day on the city streets.
What small acts of service can you engage in to share your abundance? How can you bless others this season?