Hearts Full At CHRISTmas

{Photo Credit: @mydarlingcatastrophe/www.mydarlingdepictions.com}

SAY HELLO TO MEGHAN JOY!

 

Meghan Joy lives in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota with her husband and their 5 kids. They are expecting baby #6 in April 2018. Meghan Joy homeschools their children while running a few businesses from home and keeping up with her Blog. They love family dinners, lazy Sundays after church, and random dance parties. You can connect with Meghan Joy via her social media accounts either through Instagram and Blog.
 
 

 GUEST BLOG Q&A:

WITLEE: What does Christmas mean to you? What makes this time of year so special?                                                                                                           MEGHAN JOY: Without a doubt, the sole purpose and reason for celebration at Christmas time is Jesus. All Jesus. His birth into the world is why we do all the things we do all December long. And we engrain that in our children throughout all of our traditions and events. Focusing on this fact alone, makes each and every day so special. That we get to live in a country where we have the freedom to celebrate the birth of our Savior.

WITLEE: What are some of your favorite family traditions during the Christmas season?                                                                                                                MEGHAN JOY: Beginning on December 1, we do an advent devotion (complete with chocolate) every day. We read through pieces of scripture that tell the story of the birth of Jesus. In years past, I would have a gift of a book to pen each day of Advent, but some years, that looks a little different. We have both sides of our family near and so we celebrate Christmas for like a week long. We have a “Yancy Christmas” where we open stockings in the morning, play and relax all day, and then open presents at night with snacks and treats. Christmas Eve we spend with my husbands family and go to church service. We spend Christmas Day with my side of the family and have a huge sleepover at my parents house and spend the whole next day there as well. 

WITLEE: What do you hope your children remember about Christmas? What do you hope to instill in them during this season?          MEGHAN JOY: We live in such a self-focused society and even more so at Christmastime where it is an easy time for kids to think of “Give me, give me” and “I want, I need.”  I want to impress upon them the impact we can have for others. To think of others, give gifts to others, and ultimately spread the love of Jesus wherever they go. I want them to know the reason for which we celebrate and integrate that into each part of the season. I want them to remember the moments of pause and peace. The moments with family and the beautiful traditions we can create. 

WITLEE: What does “Hearts Full At Christmas” mean to you?                     MEGHAN JOY: The beauty in the opportunity to live this season to the fullest. Not to let it pass us by with activities and have-to’s and to do’s but with a reflection of the beauty of this time of year. There are such wonderful experiences available to pour love into family and friends and even strangers and to allow them the opportunity of having a full heart. There is a natural overflow of joy this time of year and we can absorb that joy and spread it around more. 

WITLEE: How do you prepare for Christmas? 
 MEGHAN JOY:  I get all the “to’do” done in October + November. The Christmas cards, the decorations, the Christmas gifts. I get it all done prior to the beginning of December so that I can focus on each day we are given to celebrate. I’m not stressed with everything I must accomplish and all the tasks that must be done, but instead, truly enjoy life and the greatest of all, a King being born. The kids have a present mom because the shopping is done, the gifts are wrapped, and the stockings are hung. These are all good things that we love to do but there is a certain peace obtained when they are no longer items on a checklist but are just something to look forward to. We also do Advent to prepare our hearts all month long. So the physical and the spiritual/emotional aspects are in beautiful alignment for how I would like December to go.

 

WITLEE: What is Christmas morning like for your family?                             MEGHAN JOY: Because of our shared family time with both sides of our family, our Christmas morning is spent at home preparing to head to my parents house. We spend the day there and open gifts with over 20 people present (11 of them are kids under the age of 8) it is a day full of loudness and absolute JOY. On the day we do our “Yancy Christmas,” our morning is a hearty breakfast while opening stockings. The fireplace is on and the Christmas music is blaring. Pajamas and snuggles and food and fun. It is a morning of excitement and overwhelming happiness.

WITLEE: What role does your faith have through out the Christmas season?
MEGHAN JOY: Everything. All encompassing. In our gift giving, its about Jesus. We relate how the wise men brought gifts to the baby King. Our Christmas songs are about the Christ’s birth. Our Christmas tree, the star, ornaments- they can all have significant meaning + purpose, that we can trace back to the traits and depth of Jesus. I love that we get to impart that upon our kids and make the holidays less about us and more about others and ultimately, in everything, Jesus Christ.

 

WITLEE: You’re expecting your 6th child, as your family grows, how do you grow a family in faith?                                                                                            MEGHAN JOY: Our lifestyle must foster space for it. It has to be priority. We can’t rely on anyone else to teach our family, but ourselves. And it is a pure honor. I believe God equips us for the call and so He is our guide in how to lead our family. And I have a husband who leads so courageously and confidently, always seeking the wisdom of God. It is important to keep our faith first and so in all of our decision making, it comes back to our goal of how we want to raise our kids to follow Christ. 

 

WITLEE: You’re a Blogger and have your own website, tell me about that and the purpose behind it?                                                                                      MEGHAN JOY: My whole life’s mantra is “Living for today” and God impressed this heavily on my heart a few years ago and it naturally stemmed into a part of my business and ministry. I am able to blog and share on social media about what that looks like in my life and how others can integrate a life well-lived with joy into their own circumstances. I consider it such a blessing to be able to run my website and blog from home while training up my children. My ultimate purpose in it all is to give glory to God. And if one life can be changed and impacted, my mission is worth it. 

 

WITLEE: Any final thoughts on the Christmas season and your growing family that you’d like to share with the readers?                                 MEGHAN JOY: I have a HUGE love for traditions. HUGE. But I’ve always learned to loosen my grip over the years and be okay with new and different things. Whether that being traditions changing or new traditions being started. You get to design how your life looks and so don’t be so stuck in your own ways that you can’t explore new ways to celebrate. This year, we are in a new home and so excited to see what it will feel like to have our first Christmas here. However you celebrate Christmas, enjoy every minute you are given. Go big, find times of peace, and make efforts to pour into the hearts of others. That’s what its all about. Full heart. Overflowing hearts. Hearts that are full at Christmas.

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