Have you included your neighbors in your Christmas plans this year?
All you have to do is set aside the time you’d spend watching one Christmas movie or making one trip to the mall, and use that time to do something special with your neighbors.
Let me show you how!
The Neighborhood Café is offering free gifts that will open doors in your neighborhood, create opportunities to make new friends, and bless your neighbors with a meaningful gift.
The first part of your gift is an invitation to a Christmas Open House. Download and print as many copies of this pretty invitation as you need, and invite your neighbors to your home. Your Christmas Open House can be as simple or as elegant as you’d like – I’m inviting my neighbors over for store bought cookies on paper plates! There’s no agenda other than offering extravagant hospitality (not extreme entertaining!) to your neighbors.
The second part of your free gift is an adorable Christmas craft you can make together with your neighbors. It’s made by removing the glass from an old photo frame, inserting Christmas paper, and gluing on a little clothespin. Download, print and trim our Christmas Countdown Cards, and you’ve got an adorable keepsake to joyfully count down each day until Christmas. Doing this simple craft is an instant icebreaker that gives you something to talk about and an activity to share as you get to know one another. Make a Christmas Countdown with your neighbors, children, family, coworkers and friends from church!
It’s possible to deck the halls with boughs of holly – and still be jolly when you’re done! The secret to hosting a successful Open House is extravagant hospitality… not extreme entertaining. Focus on your honored guests, not a glowing home. Remember that preparing your heart takes precedence over cleaning your house.
Tips for Planning a Neighborhood Christmas Open House (click the link for more details!):
- Pray for your neighbors: Pray for open doors, open minds and open schedules.
- Pick a date and time: We will probably have to say no to something in order to say yes to our neighbors. There is no perfect date or time, so just pick one that works for you and your family.
- Pass out invitations: Deliver your invitations one to three weeks before your Open House. Attaching a simple Christmas ornament or a few pieces of hard candy in a clear bag is a nice touch.
- Prepare your home: Unleash your inner Martha… then stop fretting and enjoy your guests.
- Pick up a few supplies: Keep any recipes simple! If you’re doing the Christmas countdown craft, you’ll need a few items you may even have around the house.
- Party time! Remember the real reason for your Open House: to meet, greet and treat your neighbors.
Can you imagine what 2015 will be like in our neighborhoods, if we close 2014 by getting to know our neighbors? Homes can be transformed, our streets will become sanctuaries, and neighborhoods are knit together during this celebration of Christ’s birth.