I’m not gonna lie–it’s tough to eat clean during the holiday season. There are so many good treats around! But I also don’t like that yucky sugar “hangover” I get from eating all those treats. So I keep clean ones around instead! All 5 of these delicious treats can be kept in the freezer–so they’re out of sight, and they’ll last for a LONG time–but when you need them, they make the perfect sweet “no cheat” treat!
1. Up first is the BEST EVER Chocolate No Bake Bars. That also happen to be clean. I seriously like them better than regular no bake cookies.
What better treat than a guiltless cookie dough? And don’t worry, there’s no eggs in it either. Just simple, real ingredients, that taste just like eating regular cookie dough! Someday I just might bake a couple of them and see if they turn out.
You do have to cook these treats–but from start to finish it only takes 10 minutes! And these are AMAZING! Did I mention they are flourless too? And I bet you already have all the ingredients. I seriously make these EVERY time we have overripe bananas.
As you probably know, our family has been using our church’s #lighttheworld campaign to teach our kids a little more about service and how being like Jesus is the most meaningful gift they can give this Christmas season! As I was working on this amazing advent calendar from Brightly Street, I found this adorable Christmas In A Box idea I wanted to share!
I loved this little project so much that I made a set of blocks for my kids too. Shh…don’t tell–it’s a surprise for Christmas!
Working on little handmade projects like this was always the highlight of my Christmas memories from childhood, and I’ve looked long and hard for a way to incorporate handmade gifts and service into our family’s Christmas traditions.
I love that this is an inexpensive way to create a meaningful gift for a person or family in need! And–all the hard work is done for you! (That’s my favorite part–graphic design and I are NOT friends)
Luckily, Melia from Brightly Street is incredibly talented and created all of this for us and has all the detailed instructions below:
So, what’s inside the box? Well, you will find a Christmas tree made out of blocks, a colorful stocking, a reading and writing journal and lights! Of course, there is an awful cute box to go with it.
Melia has designed all of the printables for you to use to put together your own Christmas-in-a-Box and serve someone you love or even a stranger. Let’s jump right in and share a few how-to tips.
Box: Print on white card stock as full bleed or borderless if possible. Laminate the paper for durability and also laminate a plain white card stock page. Do not cut around the paper just leave the laminating edge as is. Measure from the edge of the paper with a ruler using the width of your ruler as your measurement and use the end of a pair of scissors to score the paper. Fold along all four sides. At the top and bottom of the paper, cut a a slit until it meets the other fold line. Fold corner together and staple. Do the same thing on all four sides. Repeat with the bottom box, but fold just a hair smaller on all four sides, cut and staple corners. Fit top over bottom of the box. Print and cut out tag and ribbon. Place ribbon around top of the box cover and tape it under the sides. Attach the tag with tape to the topside. Please refer to the YouTube video to see a demonstration of who to make the box, it really is quite simple!
Journal: Print, cut in half and hole punch each page. Using a metal ring attach page together. You can add ribbons to the ring if you want. The journal is a 10 day advent calendar. The person can read a page everyday starting anytime in December or just read a page throughout the month and finish it by Christmas. The journal is called “READ His Story, WRITE your story.” Everyday there is a scripture found in the New Testament about Jesus Christ’s life starting with his baptism and ending with the resurrection. After the person reads the story, there is a writing prompt question or statement on the next page to help them write their own story. Just a bit of family history and strengthening your testimony of Jesus Christ during the Christmas season. At the bottom of the scripture page, you will find a QR code. Scan it with your smart phone and go directly to Brightly Street’s website where you can watch a video about the scripture you just read and listen to a Christmas song! It’s the best interactive advent calendar around.
Christmas Tree Blocks: Purchase 1.5 inch blocks from Hobby Lobby or purchase a 1.5 x 1.5 inch piece of wood and cut them into squares with a miter saw. Lightly sand the wood edges. Print the Christmas tree pages on white card stock. To prevent smearing the ink, laminate them first. Cut out squares and glue them to the wood pieces. See the printable page for where to place each square. Modge podge the entire block and let it dry. Build the blocks to make a Christmas tree on one side. There are also sides for: Christmas Songs, Scripture Story, Writing Prompt, Days 1-10 and Nativity characters. The blocks coordinate with the journal.
Stocking: Print on white card stock. Pick one of two stocking designs, cut around stocking and then trace another blank one onto card stock and cut it out to use as the backside of the stocking. Punch holes along the sew lines and sew together with yarn. You can also laminate them before you thread with yard.
Christmas Card: Print on card stock, cut and sign your name on the backside of the postcard. Place it on top of all items inside your Christmas-in-a-Box.
That’s it! Place all of the parts inside the box and you are now ready to hand deliver or mail your box! This will be an unforgettable gift to just about anyone. Here’s a list of ideas of who you can gift your Christmas-in-a-Box too:
Someone away from home serving in the military.
A person sick and staying in the hospital through the holidays.
Visit a Children’s Hospital and find a child that needs some extra cheer this year.
Take it to a nursing home and give it to someone lonely. Make friends with them and help them write their story.
Send it to a college student to help them bring in the Christmas cheer as they cram for finals the last few weeks before joining family or friends for Christmas.
Gift it to a missionary in your area or abroad. Missionaries can put a block in their pocket and find someone to share a scripture or song.
Feel free to make a set of Christmas tree blocks for your own family. You can cut larger blocks and turn them into a table center piece! We hope this helps your family work together on this project as your kids help cut, glue or sew with yarn to make this a fantastic family fun time as we serve others this Christmas season. Help us and Brightly Street #LIGHTtheWORLD with the true meaning of Christmas.
Please use the hashtag #LIGHTtheWORLD and @BrightlyStreet as you mail or deliver your Christmas-in-a-box to someone. We’d love to see how you used this kit and how it was received! May we “Light the World” with the true meaning of Christmas this year and serve our fellowman.