Welcome to Monday 3-2-1 where you can find 3 tips, 2 things I’m loving, and 1 quick thought!
3 Tips (for Celebrating & Remembering Others This Year)
1. Create a master sheet of important & significant dates (birthdays, anniversaries, adoption dates, important milestones, deaths, & losses).
This can be as simple as a word document, notebook, excel spreadsheet, or google calendar where you type up these events and organize them by months. The difference with this type of calendar is that you are thinking in terms of past important events and not just future ones. It might be helpful to begin by listing the people you are doing life with this year (family members, friends, neighbors, church family, co workers, long distance friends, missionaries, etc.), and important events in their lives. Whatever system you create needs to work for you. Some people work better with online calendars that send alerts while others may benefit from a paper calendar hanging on the side of the fridge.
Fun tip: My mother-in-law creates a yearly photo calendar using Shutterfly that includes every member of our extended family (birthdays & anniversaries). We display this in our kitchen and it’s a fun way to remember our extended family that we don’t see very often!
2. Set aside intentional planning time at the beginning of each month.
A few days before the next month begins, take some time to sit down and look at your calendar. One new thing I’m trying this year is to spend this time writing all the handwritten cards at once, addressing them, and having them ready to mail. Setting aside 30 minutes of time at the beginning of the month will ensure that I don’t forget to write that birthday card or acknowledge that important date. If you need to purchase any gifts for the month, this can also be a helpful time to order or plan your shopping trip so that you aren’t making last minute runs or impulse buying.
Fun tip: Involve your kids in this! Have them sit down with you and draw pictures or write cards to send with your letter.
3. Be intentional with your words, your gifts, and your time.
Let’s be honest, if I have to go out and buy a special birthday card I’m probably not going to send very many this year. But if I have a stack of pretty, blank cards that I enjoy looking at, I am MUCH MORE likely to grab a card, write a note, and mail it off. Next time you’re at Target or Walmart grab several sets of blank cards that appeal to you. Then every month you can easily grab a few cards and write a note to the people on your list. I would also encourage you to write more than, “Hope you have a nice birthday and enjoy your day!” Spend some time thinking about how that person has been a blessing to you. Acknowledge their gifts and strengths, ways you’ve seen them grow or change, character qualities that inspire you, or even prayers that you are praying over their lives.
2 Things I’m Loving
1. rEAD ALOUD VIDEO
Looking to fill a few minutes of time with your kids this week? Here’s a read a loud video of Arlo and the Great Big Cover-Up, a story of sin and repentance.
2. Parenting in light of the gospel podcast
If you’ve never heard Paul Tripp speak on parenting, this podcast is for you. If you’ve read his books and heard him speak many times, this podcast is for you. If you don’t have kids yet, this podcast is for you. It’s that good.
1 Quick Thought
Remembering the Losses
I’m not sure it’s necessary (or appropriate) to acknowledge the missed anniversary since the divorce every year. That said, I do think we could all (myself definitely included!) grow in the area of remembering the losses others have experienced, even when that pain isn’t directly washing on our shore. That first missed anniversary, the due date of a lost baby, the first Father’s/ Mother’s Day their parent isn’t present to be celebrated…those are all events that are forever etched on people’s hearts. I think we would do well to expand our hands to not only learning how to celebrate, but also how to grieve better with others.
As you add in those birthdays to your planner this year, take some time to consider which losses God might be calling you to acknowledge as well.
Gift Giving Ideas for 2021
- Illuminated Scripture journal (Psalms), (Proverbs), (Hebrews), or (John).
- Gift cards to a local boutique, business, coffee shop
- Blank Journal
- Verse cards from Well Watered Woman or Daily Grace Co
- Bible highlighters/ pens
- The Bible Handbook by Daily Grace Co.
- Earrings from a local business
- Homemade treats
- One Line a Day journal
This blogpost does include affiliate links when appropriate, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a small commission if you click through to make a purchase. All words and opinions are my own.