Butler County Times Gazette
Finding the sacred in everyday life
Gifts that shower baby with faith and prayer
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Marketta Gregory never meant to be a columnist. \x34I trained to be a newspaper reporter -- one who tried to her best to be objective. I covered religion for a few years and felt like it was the best job a curious woman like me could ever have. ...
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Simply Faithful
Marketta Gregory never meant to be a columnist. \x34I trained to be a newspaper reporter -- one who tried to her best to be objective. I covered religion for a few years and felt like it was the best job a curious woman like me could ever have. Every day I got to listen as people told me about the things that were most important to them, the things that were sacred. But the newspaper industry was changing and few papers could afford to have an army of speciality reporters. So, I moved to cover the suburbs where, as luck would have it, they have plenty of religion, too. Eventually, children came into the picture. One by birth and another two months later by foster care/adoption. I struggled to chase breaking news and be home at a decent hour, so I made the move to what we journalists call the dark side: I took a job in public relations. (Don't worry. I work for a great non-profit, so it's not dark at all.) When I gave my notice at the Rochester (NY) Democrat and Chronicle, the executive editor asked me to consider writing a column on a freelance basis. She didn't want the newspaper to lose touch with its religious sources, and she still wanted consistent faith coverage. I was terrified. It took me about 10 months to get back to her with a solid plan and some sample columns. And so it began, this journey of opening up my heart to strangers.\x34
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By simplyfaithful
Sept. 21, 2013 5:10 p.m.



Babies are always fun to celebrate, but are you looking for a gift with something more? Maybe something with a touch of faith? Something wrapped in prayer?

Well, here are more than a dozen of my all-time favorites:

I love the idea of surrounding children with scripture – and I love the beautiful artwork at Carpentree. Here’s a glimpse of what they have to offer.

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Who can resist a precious stuffed lamb, especially when it offers the Lord’s Prayer?

If you are more of a do-it-yourselfer, why not print something sweet like this and frame it? Or, download this book of ABC scriptures and make it to welcome the new baby or to give to the older brother?

Slip these bandages into a first aid kit?

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This tiny prayer book and set of scripture matching cards make great add-on gifts. (Look for them at local Christian bookstores.)

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I often give a copy of the Jesus Storybook Bible, but I also like the new Baby Beginner’s Bible Series from Zonderkidz. They are board books designed for the 3 and under crowd. Each page has a picture and one simple word.

A book recommendation for the older sibling? I am simply in love with Pirates on the Farm by Denette Fretz. It is a fun book that teaches the importance of loving our neighbors, even the ones who seem difficult.

424637_10151737964357650_2037389217_nI’ve also started tucking in CDs (or gift cards for downloads) with my gifts for children. I bought Songs Kids Love to Sing: 25 Sunday School Songs for my littlest niece, and I’ve just recently found another favorite – Roots for the Journey by Yancy. Imagine songs written from scripture and sung with acoustic guitar and piano… it is absolutely perfect for the nursery. Plus, when you buy the CD, you get a great app that offers family devotions, articles for parents and suggestions for family activities.

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One of the most important messages I hope children receive is that they are precious to God. That’s why I’ve also started giving rose rocks. You can read about the legend of the rose rock and how we found ours here.

phonto

And finally, are you looking for a gift for the new grandma? It seems every child loves to get mail, so try these. There are 12 activity pages to send. (Look in your local Christian bookstores.)

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What would you add to the list?

phonto

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