How Our Family is Celebrating Christmas This Year

Our Christmas traditions have morphed through the years as our kids grew up. Now, after several years of having only adults at our celebrations, we welcomed three amazing foster children ages 1-4. Our excitement is palpable! To make this the best year possible for them, we’re bringing back some of our earliest traditions, while setting aside some cherished ones that would not be a good fit for them. Advent Books & Nativity Sets Introducing our little ones to the Christmas story is our highest priority this year. So we found 25 different picture books that retell the nativity story and […]

What our family is doing for Christmas 2011

What our Family is Doing for Christmas in 2011

Our approach to Christmas has always been nontraditional and eclectic. So what are we doing this year? Simple Decorating Pearl usually takes on the task of sprinkling the house with nativity scenes, a camel tapestry and more. We have a wide variety of nativities, including a plastic one set up specifically for the Bible Study toddlers to play with, a lovely wooden nativity from my grandparents, a handcrafted set with beleaguered characters and meaningful-only-to-us accessories, and the newest addition, a ceramic nativity lovingly brought back from Peru by my cousin. Monday Meals I know, it’s not the most brilliant name, […]

Christmas Reenactments

Nativity Reenactment – One of Our Family Christmas Traditions

Reposted from December of 2009. One of the Christmas traditions our family has done for over 20 years now is reenacting the Nativity story. And so in honor of the season, for the next couple of weeks we will be posting short video clips of our enactments from the past. Our reenactments have taken many different twists over the years. Beginning in the early years we toddled door-to-door amongst homes of relatives asking for lodging and of course being turned away, “No room. Sorry.” As we grew older we used puppets which we took to the homes of older relatives […]

Our family's tradition of Camelbags

Camel Bags – One Of Our Family’s Christmas Traditions

Originally posted December 15th, 2009 on Timberdoodle’s Facebook Page. If you know our family, you know we have some odd family traditions including limiting our Christmas decorations to a nativity theme (we don’t even have a tree!) and putting off gift giving to New Years. Of all of our traditions though, Camel Bags raise the most eyebrows. “Camel what?” And so we launch into this explanation, which seems to get weirder as we go. We want to celebrate Christmas without making it about presents, but we love presents too. 🙂 That’s why our gift-giving takes place on New Years Day. Camel […]

Should A Christian Celebrate Christmas?

Should A Christian Celebrate Christmas? Timberdoodle Newsletter December 2006

Reposted from Timberdoodle’s December 2006 newsletter On our honeymoon more than 28 years ago, we were confronted with the question, “should a Christian celebrate Christmas?” Having read and studied both sides of the controversy, we’ve come to the following conclusion. While we acknowledge that Jesus wasn’t actually born in December, it is the time that the world pseudo-recognizes it. And, although the world’s acknowledgment of the Messiah’s birth is nearly choked out by the commercialism of the season, we as Christians desire to use whatever means we can to redeem the time. Our thoughts are that the best way to […]


Where’s Your Heart this Christmas? December Newsletter 2009

Reposted from our December 2009 Timberdoodle Newsletter Dear Friends, This year we are taking a slight departure from our annual bashing of secular Christmas, to urge you to take inventory on the condition of your children’s hearts. What if you discovered, quite by accident, that your married daughter was flirting with the UPS man? Would you not beg her to remember the vows she made before God and man? And wouldn’t you feel sick if she laughed and continued to engage in such destructive behavior? Paul, in his second letter to the Corinthians implored “…I feel a divine jealousy for […]


How We Pack Shoeboxes As A Bible Study

What is more fun than packing shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child? Doing it with your friends. A world-wide outreach of Samaritan’s Purse, Operation Christmas Child distributes shoeboxes full of necessities and toys to children across the globe. Each year, thousands of families wrap shoeboxes and fill them with items such as socks, toothbrushes, dolls, t-shirts, and toy cars, and bring the finished boxes to their church to be sent to Samaritan’s Purse’s processing center. While we found packing shoeboxes as a family to be fun, we wanted a way to include our friends. Now for the second year we are […]

gifts wrapped with towels?

Do You Have A Hard Time Getting Your Gifts Wrapped “Just Right?”

A few years ago, our family began a quirky birthday tradition of not wrapping our presents with wrapping paper. Instead, pillowcases, bags, towels, and even tablecloths are not-so-elegantly draped around the presents. Once all the presents are opened, there is no mess of crumpled paper, and we just put the linens back into the cabinet for the next birthday. It’s easy, economical, practical, and green! Not everyone prefers it though, and it isn’t a requirement. A couple of my siblings always choose the road more traveled and ask that their presents be wrapped in real wrapping paper; claiming  that it […]


1997 – Christmas Pageants & Catalog Covers

Our Timberdoodle catalog covers have been many and varied, but this donkey pose was definitely one of the more challenging shoots. Our 2 miniature donkeys were kind and gentle, and even used to participating in our annual Christmas pageants, but I wouldn’t say they were particularly cooperative! With a cover like that, it seems appropriate to ask about your favorite Christmas traditions. One of ours has been the annual Christmas pageant that originally began as a family reenactment of the Nativity story but then grew to include members of a handful of local churches, a nursing home and even our […]


What our Family Played with During the Holidays

Over Christmas and New Years our family used some of our favorite Timberdoodle items during our different get-togethers! Our first gathering was our fire department’s Christmas party, at which our family was responsible for child entertainment. We racked our brains for a while on this one, what would be engaging, indoor, and suitable for 1-25 children confined in a smallish room! We ended up with an assortment of different activities, (Rolit, Exago, Duplos, arts and crafts, etc) but our favorite was “target practice.” After building a number of Citiblocs towers (which was almost an activity in and of itself), we […]