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12 Days of Christmas Giveaways (2017) – Day 3

10th Annual #12DaysofChristmas Giveaways (2017) at karenehman.com.

*Give Away has Ended*


One of you WHO COMMENTS ON ALL TWELVE POSTS AND ALSO SHARES ABOUT THE SERIES ON SOCIAL MEDIA will win a grand prize from me, pictured here.

10th Annual #12DaysofChristmas Giveaways (2017) at karenehman.com.

REMEMBER…in order to win the grand prize, you must leave a comment on all 12 posts. You can start with Day One here.

OK, let’s get started with our third day’s guest, Sara Hagerty.


Hagerty Family Tradition

I have a four year-old who sleeps better after he has run hard. Dirt underneath his fingernails and beads of sweat clinging to the scraggly locks of blond hair around his ears as I tuck him in for a nap, and I can be assured the rest of the day will run smoothly.

So we get outside.

At 10:00am – the time when I once was most productive – we pull on our boots and tromp through the woods. We pick berries and pull back the branches of evergreen trees in search of robin’s nests, all while his eyes dart through the underbrush for snakes.

“Tell me a story, Mommy,” he asks. His little-boy mind feeds on story and it’s snack time. We live our own story as we explore the woods and I tell him another one to feed his mind.

God knew His people feast best on story. My little guy is like every other son of Adam that preceded him. He learns the world through story.

And though my bigger kids don’t say “Mommy, tell me a story,” they lean in when my husband talks about his college days. I sometimes hear them retelling with the same intonation as we do, creating legends out of our anecdotes.

While I feel more secure with the instruction from a Proverb or an epistle, the prodigal son’s father (the picture of my Father) ran with a pounding in his chest and sweat collecting in his ears to meet his son. A whore was in the lineage of Jesus. A virgin wore stretch-marks from the Son of God within her.

We are storied people and our God speaks in story.

As life barrels, even for those of us with an intentional eye for slow, tradition anchors the flitting life right back to home. And one of our favorite family traditions revolves around story.

Every Advent, we gift each one of our children with an Advent- or Christmas-related storybook. Throughout December, these books stay scattered under the tree and wedged between couch pillows. They’re well-loved. We read them for one month and package them up for the other eleven.

The thrill of re-discovering these books – though they’re not the divine story of Scripture, but are merely illuminating the beauty of our God-in-skin – is akin to the spark in my four year-old’s eye at ten in the morning on a weekday. With this traditional anchor we cultivate holy curiosity – hunger — in the minds of our storied children.

Day Three Giveaway

For the 12 Days of Christmas series, I am giving away the two books pictured below! I’m a gift giver. I love that I can suggest a tradition to you and also initiate that tradition in your home with one of our favorite December reads: Christmas Day in the Morning. The winner of this giveaway will receive this book, along with a copy of my recently released book Unseen: The Gift of Being Hidden in a World that Loves to be Noticed.

10th Annual #12DaysofChristmas Giveaways (2017) at karenehman.com.
Sara Hagerty is the author of Every Bitter Thing is Sweet and Unseen: The Gift of Being Hidden in a World that Loves to be Noticed, a wife to Nate, and a mother of six, including four children adopted from Africa, one toddler who’s found his voice amid them all, and a wee-babe. After almost a decade of Christian life, she was introduced to pain and perplexity and, ultimately, intimacy with Jesus. God met her and moved her when life stopped working for her. His Word and His whisper took on new shape and form to her in the dark. Sara writes regularly about life delays, finding God in the unlikely, motherhood, marriage, and adoption at SaraHagerty.net.


12 Days of Christmas Giveaways Rules

  1. You can comment on all 12 days (once per person) up until midnight Pacific time, Sunday, December 17. All posts are linked on Day One here.
  2. U.S. Addresses only please.
  3. One daily winner will be chosen from each day’s comments and all winners (including Grand Prize) will be announced on Wednesday, December 20.
  4. Share the giveaway with your friends and followers using the share buttons below.
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  1. I always bought special seasonal & holiday storybooks for my girls and rotated the books with the calendar. Now that my girls are 16 & 12, I really miss reading those special books with them. My hubby just asked me today if I got out the Christmas books, mentioning a particular favorite. It makes me sad that I put them away thinking my kids had outgrown those books. We never outgrow the beauty of Christmas & the other seasons & holidays. Now to find those books…

  2. What a great tradition. I used to read advent stories when my kids were younger, we should do a different tradition now.

  3. What a lovely tradition. I have a 12 year old son and a 5 year old daughter. This would be a great gift to share stories with them. Thanks for sharing this tradition.

  4. Thanks for sharing. Setting aside time for story time with kids is difficult some days, but as I am reminded it’s quality not quantity.

  5. I always try to give books as gifts. Though most of the time it is what she is interested in at the time. Love of learning.

  6. My daughter and family do that tradition of Advent/Christmas books. Such a nice tradition! I love Christmas books myself.

  7. I am a mom, who is always trying to start traditions with my little family; however, they never seem to stick :(

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