Each morning the kids wake up and we read our Bible story and hang an ornament up on the Jesus Tree. After, one of the kids pick a slip of paper from the jar for their sacrifice/good deed of the day. For example, this week the ideas drawn were:
- Say "I'm sorry" and "I forgive you" when needed. (Just when I think we all do this automatically is usually when it starts to wear off!)
- Say an extra decade of the Rosary. (On nice days we take a "Rosary Walk" but colder days find us on the couch or on my bed before going to sleep.)
- Unplug for the day - no tv, computer, phone, etc. (Wow - I had some teary eyes on this one but after the initial groans, I heard nothing more about it, and they had a great time making a disaster of the house, pulling games and whatnot out.)
- Fill a donation bag. (Boy, this was hard for me to let them fill it as they wished, and not butt in. And, it sure took them a long time to decide what goes!)
Once their deed is done, they can put a bean in a jar. On Easter morning they will find it filled with jelly beans (to share of course!).
The final thing the kids are doing is taking a chain off our Lenten countdown chain at night. The chain is purple for the 40 days, with golden yellow for each Sunday. Each chain has a simple prayer on it. Their dad, myself, or Skipper reads the prayer. We all love this activity, but I must say I do not like the cat batting away at it every single morning, while waiting for his breakfast!
In addition, there are little things added: creating a small altar table with books, crucifix, etc. that is very visible and hands-on; playing the Holy Heroes Stations of the Cross audio cd (Skipper loves this); and eventually watching Via Crucis - Stations of the Cross dvd. I have some other small ideas if desired, but those are all extra and will do only if time (more like, baby) allows and it does not lead to complicating/stressing-out Lent.
What meaningful activities help your child(ren) focus on Lent?