Thursday, December 15, 2016

Watch "The Chaos of Holiday Hecticness!" On Demand

Do you ever feel like the best gifts of the season evade you amidst the frantic nature of the holidays? Do you find yourself preparing trappings when you wish you could be preparing your heart for something far richer? In this episode of Chaos to Calm, I sit down with two pastors who are also parents and explore how they try to capture the true meaning of the season. You will hear personal childhood memories plus learn a fun way of engaging your children around Christmas...I am not going to tell you where all of the nativity figurines wind up!

This episode is my gift to you, friends. I pray it enriches your season, home, and heart.

Did you like it? Please SHARE it! I need your help to get the word out about this hopefully helpful and meaningful ministry. What better time to think of someone and share than at Christmas?


P.S. I hint in this episode about a BIG giveaway happening on my January show (thank you, Zonderkidz), plus introduce my upcoming guest. She's an author who has captured the hearts of many, many children, and she will capture yours too!

Monday, December 12, 2016

Winner and Watch "The Chaos of Holiday Hecticness!"


I am pleased to announce the winner of the Zonderkidz giveaway for a copy of author Glenys Nellist's new book: Christmas Love Letters from God. We had readers register from all over the country! Our winner heralds from Connecticut: A. Mones. I will be emailing you to confirm your address, and you will be getting your book soon! We've now added Connecticut to our long list of other prize winning states here on the blog. Winners have also come from Maine, New Jersey, Texas, Indiana, Kansas, Illinois, South Carolina, and Arizona. And readers, A. Mones definitely took advantage of bonus entry options -- note that for next time! 

In fact, two BIG giveaways will be happening in coordination with my January TV show for the parenting series Chaos to Calm. The topic is "The Calm of Building Children's Faith Foundations." If you want to find out more about these giveaways, don't miss December's show! (Hint: Another one of Glenys' books will be up for grabs then too, along with books from many other authors!) Which reminds me...

"The Chaos of Holiday Hecticness!" will be airing on HomeTowne TV TOMORROW night at 9 PM EST. My goal was to sit down with two pastors, who are also parents, to hear how they try to keep the spirit of Christmas alive in their families amidst so many competing forces. If you're feeling run down, or like you're out of touch with the REAL blessings of the season, DON'T miss this! The episode includes a fun way to engage children in the Christmas message...I can't wait to try it!

Me interviewing fellow pastor and mom, Deborah Huggins
For those of you in NJ, tune into channel 33 (Verizon) or 36 (Comcast) on Tuesday. Or, anyone can live stream the show at 9 PM EST by clicking here. An on demand YouTube link will follow later in the week. If you are subscribed my email to my blog (see the upper right hand corner of the homepage), you will get this episode, along with more giveaway information, sent right to your inbox!

Merry Christmas, everyone!

P.S. For those of you who are new to the blog, you can catch up on past Chaos to Calm episodes by clicking here!

Monday, December 5, 2016

Giveaway and Guest Post: Seven Family Activities Around the Christmas Tree

It's a delight to have my friend Glenys Nellist back to my blog! Glenys has a gift in making God's promises personal for every child. She does it this time through love letters from God to your child around the Christmas story. To see just how she does it, watch here. And to register for a FREE COPY of her new book, which is sure to be a new family tradition at your house, enter via the form below on the homepage or by clicking here! (See contest details below.)

In the spirit of her Christmas book (recommended ages preschool-8), Glenys is passing along seven family activities to do around the Christmas tree. Her background as a Christian educator and grandmother is apparent as she encourages these memorable family moments. She writes:

There’s simply no better time than Christmas to make memories and establish family traditions with our children. Set aside some time each night to gather around the Christmas tree and enjoy these activities together!

1. Favorite Ornament: Have everyone choose a favorite ornament from the tree. Take turns telling each other why you chose that one.
2. Bethlehem’s Baby Boy: Download your free color-a-story sheet of Bethlehem's Baby Boy, from the first Love Letters from God book. Read the story, then color it in.
3. Light of The World: Turn off all of the lights in the room except the lights on the Christmas tree. Sit quietly for a few minutes as you think and talk about how Jesus is the light of the world.
4. Carol Sing: Have everyone choose their favorite carol and sing the first verse together or listen to it.
5. Candy Canes: Have each family member thread white and red beads alternately onto pipe cleaners and then bend them into the shape of a candy cane to hang on the tree. (J is for Jesus!)
6. DIY Nativity: Download this free nativity scene and cut out figures from Christmas Love Letters from God. Have fun creating your own special scene!
7. Favorite Memories: Take turns sharing your favorite memories of the year. Now write (or draw) your own letter to God, thanking God for those times. Put each in its own envelope and save them. Next year, open and read them around the tree.

Happy memory-making!


Good luck winning her book! A winner will be chosen one week from today on Monday, December 12th.  All entrants must have a US street address (no PO boxes) for shipping purposes, please. Watch for bonus entry options! Enter via the form below on the homepage or by clicking here. Disclaimer: I was given a free copy in exchange for my honest review.

Also, don't miss the upcoming episode of my new parenting series, Chaos to Calm, on "The Chaos of Holiday Hecticness!" It will air on Tuesday, December 13th. Subscribe by email to my blog on the upper righthand side of my homepage to have episodes sent right to your inbox! Watch the most recent episode on bullying, grief, and anxiety in children here.

TODAY Video Clip