Disclaimer: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.
Christmas is coming! Families all over the world look forward to celebrating together with special and meaningful traditions. The Advent Season leading up to Christmas is a way to mark the days and savor the meaning of the celebration. A brand new tradition you will enjoy is The Giving Manger, a beautiful set that help families focus on serving and giving rather than getting during the days leading up to Christmas Day.
The Giving Manger set includes a hardback storybook, written by Allison Hottinger and illustrated by Emily King. The story takes the reader on a family’s journey in which a brother and sister discover the joy and excitement that comes from giving to others.
Also included are a wooden manger, a bundle of straw, and a wooden baby Jesus you can use with your children as they prepare a bed for Baby Jesus.
The author was inspired by her own family’s experience as she wrote this story. The story can be read out loud together as a family, setting the tone and explaining what will happen in the coming days. The Giving Manger tells us the story of brother and sister, Ben and Anne who are encouraged by their parents to seek opportunity to give and serve as they look forward to Christmas morning. To help motivate and encourage the children, their parents provide a small wooden manger with pieces of straw. For each act of service or giving, they are asked to place one piece of straw in the manger. Over time, a nice bed is created as they await with anticipation for the arrival of the special babe.
To help families utilize this story and the hands-on activity, the author has included lists at the end of the book to help you find ideas for service. She includes ideas for all ages, young children and teens as well as family as a whole.
One last special feature is a page to record a list of the acts of service your family accomplished each year. What a nice way to record your memories!
Holiday traditions can build strong family bonds. They are a part of who we are and can be passed from generation to generation. While my children are nearly all grown and on their own, I enjoyed introduction The Giving Manger to my grandchildren during a recent visit.
As I read the story out loud, my 6 and 7 year old grandsons, along with their 5 year old sister acted it out by brainstorming acts of service they would do and filling the manger with pieces of straw. Little Austin was more than happy to lovingly place Baby Jesus on his bed of hay.
You know you have something special when they say, “Read it again, Grandma! Let’s do it again!” The materials used in publishing and creating The Giving Manger are high quality, made to last. It is a set that will be enjoyed for years to come and will be passed on to future generations.