Back in the “old days” kids sat with their parents in church.
Sitting in church with your family didn’t used to be weird. Church was a family affair. It was normal. In fact, there were no other options.
Well, we’ve come a long way since I was a kid.
Many churches today don’t even allow children into their sanctuaries. Parents are expected to drop their children off to their age appropriate classrooms before the service starts and pick them up again after the service is over.
I completely disagree with the idea of separating children from their families for worship. I have so much to say on this topic but it’s going have to wait until another day because today…
…I want to show you what’s in my church bag!
So for those of you who do sit with your dear little sweeties in church, these are some of the things I keep in my church bag to keep my little ones quiet and happy.
What’s Inside My Church Bag?
My daughter is three and she really doesn’t need snacks in church anymore.
But I still keep snacks in our bag just in case. Because we all know that a hungry child is a cranky child. When she was a baby I used to pack those little baby puffs and she loooved them! But when I ran out…it was time to go, ya’ll.
Right now I keep fruit leather, raisins, applesauce squeezers, juice, and healthy snack bars in there. The lollipops I have hidden in a secret little pocket. I save those for extra special occasions.
2. Quiet Activities
The following items remain in our church bag and aren’t played with except for on Sunday mornings during church. Since we only get these things out once a week, she doesn’t lose interest in them so quickly.
I like to keep a mini coloring book or coloring pages with crayons in our bag. I also like those Color Wonder markers and coloring books because they are mess free! The Little Dover activity books are great for keeping little hands busy and they fit so nicely in a small bag. I keep little books, stickers, doodle pads, and an Etch A Sketch in there too.
Every couple of weeks I rotate the old activities out for some new ones to keep things fresh and interesting.
3. Soft Books
I got these felt books from my mom. She made these for my brothers when they were little. And they’ve held up all these years!
These books are the best. Each page is interactive and has a pocket full of felt pieces to arrange on the page. This felt book tells of Bible stories like Noah’s Ark, Jonah and the Whale, Adam and Eve in the Garden, etc.
Noah’s ark opens up and you can put the animals in the ark.
And, of course, Jonah goes in and out of the whale’s mouth. grins
Each page in this book, below, features a different landscape along with the animals that would live in that particular habitat. Some pages have flaps that you lift to view hidden animals or scenes.
My daughter gets creative and makes all the animals talk to each other. In fact, in her world, everything talks, inanimate or not, it doesn’t matter. Cuteness.
This book is full of teddy bears that you dress up in different outfits. I love this one. It’s really cute and fun.
If you try them out, let me know how you like them! I may need to add another book to our collection.
4. Children’s Bulletins
Do you remember receiving a children’s bulletin at church? I remember them. Not only did I feel very important receiving my own bulletin, but they were tons of fun! Full of puzzles and pictures to color.
Churches don’t hand out children’s bulletin’s anymore, at least not that I know of, but I recently ran across a book of children’s bulletins. Cool, huh!
My son, who is nine, doesn’t have a church bag. Instead, he brings a notebook to church and he illustrates something that stood out to him in the message. He likes to draw but he hates to write. He much prefers drawing over taking notes, and I think that’s just fine. This keeps him happy, busy, and listening to the message.
Totally off topic but does anyone remember receiving actual palm leaves on Palm Sunday? Because I totally do. I always wondered why they quit handing those out. They were so fun! I had a blast whipping my brother with those things. I think I got mine taken away after we had started a sword fight in the service and somebody got poked in the eye. Yeah, but they were so fun…
If you keep a church bag, I’d love to know what you keep in yours!