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Prepare the Way of the Lord • Family Time!

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December 9-15 • Second Week of Advent

Bernard of Quintavalle + Ven. Fulton Sheen + Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe + St. Lucy of Syracuse + St. John of the Cross + Blessed Mary Frances Schervier

Family Time printables are now available for Nov. 25 – Jan. 1…
plus, get a bonus pack of 9 printable Advent pages.

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A few options for Catholic moms and dads to try with kids next week.

Get In the Realm of Mist & Mercy Kindle ebook free!
See below for details.

  1. Make Advent Focaccia Bread with your kids. Advent Focaccia Bread is the perfect recipe to make with your kids for a lesson about waiting. Focaccia is a yeast bread and although it requires simple ingredients to make, it takes time, preparation and patience before we can enjoy the finished product. Sound a little like preparing children’s hearts and minds for Christmas Day? It’s Cooking with Catholic Kids, by Theresa Wilson.
  2. Invite Jesus into your hearts. This Sunday’s readings focus on returning to God with all our hearts.  Check out the readings with Jen Schlameuss-Perry in Breaking Open the Word at Home.
  3. Celebrate the feast of St. Lucy. Most of us have heard of St. Lucy, but what about her companion “star boys” who are also part of a proper Scandinavian Santa Lucia feast? Parade like star boys and play this game of balance with your children to have fun celebrating the feast of St. Lucy. Looking for something more elaborate? Jessica at Shower of Roses is the queen of elaborate feast days; head over there for her ideas for celebrating St. Lucy’s Day.
  4. Meet Juan Diego. The feast day of the indigenous Mexican peasant to whom the Virgin Mary appeared would normally be December 9, which falls on a Sunday this year, but you can still introduce your kids to him with a story and coloring pages in Meet Juan Diego! Saints for Kids.
  5. Celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Here are five ways to celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe …and as a bonus, Ryan Langr has these easy and festive fish tacos to make with your kids for the festival.
  6. Make a Jesse tree with your kids. We’re halfway through Advent, and a Jesse tree is a great hands-on way to connect Advent with the history of Israel’s anticipation of the Messiah. Jennifer Gregory Miller has a thorough backgrounder on the Jesse tree and how to use it as a catechetical tool over at Catholic Culture.
  7. Plan a Christmas caroling party. We went caroling at a nursing home, a hospital, and a jail last Advent and had a great experience…even if we didn’t all sing on key! Here’s how it went, and some tips for organizing your own caroling party that combines music with the works of mercy.
  8. Miss out on some of our wall-to-wall Advent coverage? Get it all at Peanut Butter & Grace. And pick up lots of nifty resources from the USCCB Advent page.


Are you a parish or diocesan director of faith formation? We’re in the early stages of developing a new “sweet and simple” program for empowering parents to actively participate in the faith formation of their kids. Interested in being our sounding board? Contact Jerry at wind@gracewatch.org.


If our books are on your shopping list, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • If an item is marked as backordered, it won’t ship in time for Christmas ..but look for the book at Amazon.com, which has most of our books in stock and ready to ship, or check your favorite bookseller.
  • For free shipping, order no later than December 14.
  • For priority mail shipping, order no later than December 19.
  • For the Ovenbird Bindery Illuminated Rosary, order by Wednesday, December 6.
  • Almost all of our titles are available on Amazon.com and BN.com. If you’re ordering past our “delivery by Christmas” deadlines, consider ordering from these companies instead. You’ll find a link to the Amazon page on most of our titles’ catalog pages.
  • Don’t forget to use our coupons to get 15%, 20%, or 25% off the retail price. Click on “Coupons” in the navigation menu.


In the Silence of the Stone, the second book in the Mist and Mercy series, is coming out soon, and to celebrate, we’re inviting readers to get Book 1, In the Realm of Mist and Mercy, for free on the Amazon Kindle. (Don’t have a Kindle? Download the free app on your Apple or Android device.) This promotion is scheduled to run Thursday, Dec. 6, through Monday, December 10. Get the ebook here.


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Family Time! and Peanut Butter & Grace is edited by Regina Lordan and Jerry Windley-Daoust. Find out about our contributors.

Follow Jerry Windley-Daoust:

Publisher, Gracewatch Media

Jerry Windley-Daoust is a writer, editor, and father of five. He writes essays and stories at Windhovering and is the show-runner for Gracewatch Media, a small Catholic publisher. You can follow his latest publishing projects at gracewatch.org.

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