25 Days of Kindness + The Kindness Elf

UPDATE: If you want to see a summary of our acts of kindness for each of the 25 days and the corresponding bible verses as well as links then check out my summary post. :)

I can't believe it is already December! Wow... this year flew by and soon it will be 2015. I am excited for Christmas this year because we are starting some of our own family traditions. We're going to wear matching, homemade PJs on Christmas Eve enjoying a movie. We are also going to drive through Legacy Park to see the Christmas light display with our hot cocoa in hand. Some traditions we are adding this year are The Kindness Elf and 25 Days of Kindness. A couple months ago I found this blog post about The Kindness Elf and knew immediately that we were going to do it this year. I think Elf on the Shelf is cute but I was on the fence with the meaning and purpose. I LOVE using the elf for good and remembering during this Christmas season that blessing others is a much bigger deal than presents under the tree.

I have been planning for weeks what we are going to do over these next 25 days and I am so excited to kick it off today. First, I found a cute elf at Michael's. I would love a little wood elf but couldn't find one that wasn't outrageously priced so my $5 elf will work just fine. I wrote a letter to the kids introducing the elf and outlining the kindness "missions" they will be given from now until Christmas. I know, I know... my kiddos are young. Too young to read. Too young to remember. Well, it's not just for them. I enjoy this just as much and I am happy to make it part of my routine. Yesterday at church the sermon reassured me of my plans and I shed a few tears in hearing the heartfelt story of an unemployed mom. She doesn't have money for Christmas presents and didn't know what to say to her daughters. The church offered to help and she declined. She knew her daughters would get presents from family and had decided this year would be different... they were going to bless people instead of focusing on presents they wanted from Santa. Such a touching story and a good reminder that there is more to life than the stress of the holidays and the hole it leaves in your bank account. That sermon really got my giving juices flowing and gave me the energy I needed to get through 25 Days of Kindness!

So here's the deal:

I have a list of acts of kindness that we can complete and I have also planned/assigned certain ones to specific days that go along with our plans. That helps to make it easy... it doesn't have to be a burden!

Here are some ideas and some of the acts of kindness we are going to be completing over the next 25 days:
Fix up and donate a swing to a newborn
Deliver dog treats to neighbor
Bake friendship bread for those in need
Donate clothes
Donate toys
Help with a toy drive
Buy bridge bread at church
Bake cookies for friends
Draw pictures to give to family members
Send personal cards to family with family photo
Leave cookies for mailman
Donate scarves
Take gifts to librarians
Surprise daddy with lunch
Letters to soldiers and veterans
Pasta for food pantry
Gifts for church children's ministry volunteers
Donate baby clothes
Buy someone's coffee
Add a dollar for St Jude
Send a thank you to our doctor
Give flowers to someone

Today we were at the hospital visiting a specialist for my daughter (all good news) and decided to swing by the baby nursery. We delivered 15 bow ties and 15 headbands for the nurses to give to the newborns. It was all stuff I had on hand because I am a crafter. It took a couple hours to make all of them but it was fun and worth it. The bow ties are on the left with some mustache elastic and the headbands are on the right. 

The Kindness Elf arrived with a note and all the bow ties and headbands. My son was really excited to see the Elf, to read the letter, and be a part of the plan. The only problem is that he thinks the Elf's hat is Santa's hat. Haha... We are working on it! I put one of the bow ties on the Elf to add in some of that Elf on the Shelf fun. :)

Another note about the letter- I am writing in bible verses for us to read together each day. I am going to try and coordinate them with the act of kindness and/or giving in general. We are going to read the verses each day and talk about them together. My son already loves church, our prayers, and baby Jesus so I'm pumped to take it up a notch. :)

Day 1 of our 25 Days of Kindness is in the books. Looking forward to the rest!

Do you have any ideas we can add to our list of options? We would love more ideas... especially ones to do if the weather is bad.


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