I have been inspired. I read a blog post about the book; The Sparkle Box. It teaches that since Christmas celebrates Jesus' birthday we should give a gift to Him. Of course we can't buy Him a present, but we can give to others.
For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. Matthew 25:35-40
Then I went out and bought a meduim sized sparkly box. It is the only gift under our tree, (gifts are put out on Christmas Eve).
Since my goal is teaching my children to think of others I am writing down things we do and placing the papers into the box. Some examples are, praying for someone, telling others about Jesus, feeding a stray cat, participating in Operation Christmas Child...
I also got some cheap small photo albums with sparkly covers, (if you can't find them you can easily use a plain one and sparkly scrapbook paper). I am going to include one album for each year along with the slips of paper, which we'll throw away after Christmas. I thought it would be fun to have the album to look back on. It will also spur us on to look for more ways we can bless others.
Of course, not everything we do will have a picture or even a slip of paper. Some things are just between us and God, but I think this will help my children to get into the habit of giving and helping others.
(Disclaimer: I haven't read the book. This is my take on the idea.)