We just wrapped up our Nutivity Scavenger Hunt, featuring this nativity scene.
When Clark, Sprout's founder, was a teenager, his family was involved with a multi-faith crèche (or nativity) display at his church. His parents encouraged him and his siblings to make nativities to share with everyone. Clark made his out of items he found around the house in junk drawers and behind his dad's wood-working shop. The result was this neat scene and a more confident and creative Clark.
We shared these nativity figures on Instagram one day at a time with discussion prompts about creativity, confidence, and holiday fun. We got some thoughtful responses to our questions and it was great to learn how everybody encourages creativity during the holidays.
Many of you make homemade ornaments, cookies, and gifts. We love that there are so many trees out there being adorned by rough salt dough ornaments made by little hands. We also love what handmade gifts say. To us, it means that you care about someone enough to make something with your own hands, investing time and thought into gifts, rather than picking up whatever you could find for the right price.
Sometimes, the best gift is the box it came in. @decker_duo_diaries told us “We do a lot of online shopping and those boxes that we get we keep and the kids use them for all sorts of things. We build what their hearts desire. Lena was a robot today. We used a box for her helmet and cut a part out for her eyes. It was previously a part of a box house.” That sparked a conversation here at the warehouse about the times we got giant boxes at Christmas. One member of our production team told us that he even found a box out in the warehouse that he used as a fort after work last week. It just goes to show that boxes are fun, no matter how old you are!
We learned a lot about the people who have the most influence on creativity in your lives. I always think it’s a good idea to thank the people who matter to you, so it was nice to see people tagging their friends right there on Instagram to let them know how they made a difference. We heard stories about parents and other family members who gave us our first start in creativity. They passed on their view of the world...and sometimes their collection of craft supplies as well! And of course, some of the people who change our perspective the most are children who have the knack of seeing everything differently, and with new eyes.
One of my favorite holiday conversation topics is traditions. Some people open gifts on Christmas Eve and many have special Christmas-time foods. As the years go on, our traditions might change to better suit our growing and changing families. @mari_unfiltered grew up opening gifts of Christmas Eve, but now she has her own family. They open gifts on Christmas morning after a breakfast of cinnamon rolls and scrambled eggs, because that’s what her husband did growing up with his grandpa.
When people told us about their favorite holiday traditions, they were usually accompanied by memories of a first Christmas with children, or the things they did growing up with siblings. It’s amazing the memories we make as children can stick with us throughout our lives. How great is it that we can help to make those kinds of memories for our children as well?
Many people are encouraging their children to be creative, which helps them to create good memories. @lathomas1018 said, “We make salt dough ornaments with our little girl. She also helps me make Christmas dinner for my husband to take to his staff since they have to all work on Christmas & be away from their families.” It’s so important to incorporate, not only creativity, but service and selflessness into the holidays. This season can be a time to teach children important values and start a habit of looking outside of themselves to see who else needs a little Christmas cheer.
Looking outside of ourselves is a great teaching to keep in mind all year. You all shared your favorite teachings with us. Many could be found in the Bible; Trust in God, Love, the Beatitudes, Find strength in the Lord. But there are other teachers who touch our lives as well. Childhood teachers told us to be humble and kind, and to spread kindness and love. Life itself can be a good teacher. There is always a lesson to be learned from whatever situation we are in, you just need to look for it. That’s a lesson my mom taught me, and it helps me to find meaning in things that may appear meaningless.
During the holiday season, and all year, remember that your children are seeing the world with new eyes. They are constantly learning from you, absorbing, and becoming more creative and confident with your encouragement. You can also learn from them, and discover new things together. Make a memory, make a new tradition, or make dinner. Just make something!
In short, what we learned from the Nutivity Scavenger Hunt is that there is always something to learn, and fascinating people to learn it from. Thank you for participating, and Happy Holidays!