I turned 32 this weekend. There are no pictures to show it.

All five of us around here have our birthdays within about a month of each other. I bring up the rear, so by the time mine rolls around everyone is tired of the camera.

Hattie and I share a birthday, actually. She woke me at exactly 11:55 p.m. the night before my 28th year began to announce that she was ready. One speedy trip to the hospital and several ignored red lights later, she arrived. 2:17 a.m. A fine, squalling, perfect little birthday present.


When your love language is gifts, well-executed birthday presents are fairly critical. Hattie’s year, Josh was mercifully off the hook, but every other November I can always see the poor guy beginning to sweat as my day rolls around.

For years he would approach me a few short days (or hours) before and pose the same question, “What do I need to get you for your birthday?”

I would then begin to scratch his eyes out. Wrong question, buddy. Wrong question.

If you must ask (but you really shouldn’t have too), it’s “What do I get to get you for your birthday?”

He learned, fortunately, and our lives involve much less eye-scratching now.


If you don’t know what your love language is you should figure it out. STAT.

I have always been a little embarrassed to admit that mine is gifts. It just sounds a tad on the materialistic side. Physical Touch Love-Languagers might be satisfied with a hug or Act of Servicers with a quick dishwasher-unload, but we Gift People need something we can unwrap.

I should probably feel worse about this, but I don’t.

Thing is, I think I’m in good company about the gift thing.

I started an Advent study the first day of November, so my mind had been steeped in all things Christmas for almost two weeks now. The decorations are not allowed to go up around here until after we have been officially and thoroughly thankful and turkey stuffed (Josh’s orders), but I’ve been singing “O Come, O Come Emmanuel” under my breath for days (and sometimes loudly, when no one is around.)

Because the gift of Jesus is on my mind.

So really, when it comes to my love language, God started it.


Some of you may have checked out after that last paragraph. For some reason, talking about Christmas too early can really rile people. Personally, I am itching to pull out my Advent calendar and stockings, but I will wait. Thanksgiving is important and needs to be appropriately observed, but for goodness sake, why oh why, should we wait to start celebrating the hope of Jesus?

Because, friends, on this difficult and dying planet, what other hope have we got?


So! In honor of my love of gifting and receiving and the hope we have through another little squalling baby’s birthday, today, I proclaim, the gifting shall begin! (Trumpets sound here.)

I met a lovely and talented author and speaker, Renee Robinson, early this spring at a writing conference. The girl was clothed in gentleness and humility, I tell you.SeekingChristmasLargeCover-210x300 She’s the real deal.

Renee has written a beautiful family devotional to help you and your Loves slow down, quiet your spirits, and celebrate the incredible meaning of Christmas together.

Designed to be used over a seven-day period prior to Christmas day, Seeking Christmas: Finding the True Meaning Through Family Traditions, encourages simple activities that can be repeated and cherished year after year.

The devotions are short and are tailored to keep the attention of kids of all ages.  Accompanied by the free Seeking Christmas journal and Seeking Christmas ornaments (available on Renee’s website), your family will develop important and memorable traditions that you and your kiddos will, no doubt, look forward to repeating next year.

I’m serious. This is a good one, and it’s well worth a few days and a few extra minutes to get your hearts set on Christmas traditions that are rooted in the sweet hope of baby Jesus. 

I’m giving away a copy of Seeking Christmas to one reader this week. To win, subscribe to my blog to receive e-mail updates, comment below with your favorite Christmas carol (but O Come, O Come Emmanuel is the best, so that’s already settled.) or do both for two chances to win!

Winner will be announced next week! 


Renee Robinson is a blogger, speaker, and author. She blogs at www.renee-robinson.com to inspire and encourage women and parents in their journey of faith and life. She is the author of Seeking Christmas – Finding the True Meaning Through Family Traditions. Her posts have been published on BlogHer, in(courage), and The Better Mom. Writing and speaking aside, she is the wife of her high school sweetheart and the mom of 3 adorably, rambunctious boys.”







*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”