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Christmas Traditions: Spirit of Giving

Christmas Straw

Place a straw in a basket beside an empty cradle. Each time a family member does a kind or thoughtful act, they can place a piece of straw in the cradle. On Christmas eve wrap a baby doll in swaddling clothes and lay on top of the hay.

Struggling Family

Take a basket of gifts to a struggling family. Include food, toys, decorations, and clothing.


Run errands for a home-bound person.


Sing carols at a nursing home-get permission first.

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Volunteer at a Soup Kitchen


Help an elderly or a disabled person decorate their home.


Call and ask nursing home or orphanage for a list of residents who normally don’t receive gifts and gift ideas. I do not sign my name to the tag so the resident can assume it is from anyone he/she knows.

Pick names from a gift-wish tree.

Cookies and candies

Cook extra batch and give to-elderly friend, police, disabled friend, fire department, postman, etc.

Collect hats, gloves, and scarves for a shelter.

Assist with “Toys for Tots”

Give gifts to missionaries.

Volunteer to ring the bell for the Salvation Army

Send gifts to overseas service people

Stationery, stamps, pens, playing cards and crossword books.

Holiday decorations

Take someone who doesn’t drive to see the Holiday decorations around town.


Volunteer to babysit for a single mom so she can go Christmas shopping.


Buy two extra cans of food when you go shopping. Donate to the food bank.

Parents in Prison

Call your local jail and see if they have a gift program for the families of prisoners. If not, ask if you may donate toys, mittens, coloring books, etc. So the prisoners have gifts to give to their family.

If you have additional ideas please share in the comments below.

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