My husband and I like to have Christmas traditions. Over the years, we have tried a few things to see if we want to do it again. Some things stick, but others have not. After 10 years together, these traditions are the ones that have stayed.
12 days of Christmas
When my husband was growing up, he and his family would go to heritage park every year and celebrate 12 days of Christmas. When we lived out east, doing this was impossible. Since living in Alberta, we make our way to Calgary every year and celebrate this with his family.
Not only is this nostalgic for his whole family, but it’s a good excuse to go down to Calgary and spend time with his family.
It’s also neat to know that my children and my husband will charge similar memories of Christmas.
One way we keep Christ the focus of Christmas is observing advent. I made an advent calendar. Every day, we read a part of the Christmas story and have a chocolate. Doing this everyday any of December helps to remind me Who we are celebrating and make provision to talk to my children about Christ every day.
My husband and I love watching Christmas movies. We have our top 10 favourite movies. We watch one a night coming up to Christmas. We even watch them in a very specific order. Watching movies helps us get into the Christmas mood.
Growing up, I enjoyed Christmas Eve as much (or more) as Christmas. We would go to church for the Christmas Eve service and then we would go sledding with friends. Before we were too small to go sledding without our parents, we would go home and open just one gift.
These days, my husband and I have our own tradition. We still go to the Christmas Eve service. Since our children are young, when that’s done we bring them home and put them to bed. Once there, we order Chinese food and watch a Christmas movie.
What is Christmas without family? We are fortunate to have family and spend time with them, but we also try and remember the people who may not have family in town. We have many single friends whose parents live out of town so we always make sure they have a place to go for Christmas dinner.
I love Christmas morning. Even as an adult, I look forward to seeing what surprises are under the tree. In the morning, we all get up and the first thing we do is open our Christmas stocking. We all do this at the same time. While we open them, breakfast is being cooked. By the time stockings have been opened, breakfast is ready. We usually have cinnamon buns, bacon and orange juice for breakfast. Then, that’s when we go back to the living room and open gifts. We open them one at a time. We usually go youngest to oldest until there is nothing left under the tree.
It’s not always easy having a tree up with young children. They play with the ornaments and want to touch all of them. But, no matter the obstacles we always put one up. We decorate for the season the first weekend in December. Each year, we get a new Christmas ornament. Usually something meaningful. Like, an ornament from a special trip or celebration: like birth of a child, or first Christmas together. I love decorating the tree. But with all our special ornaments I love it even more. Most of our ornaments are a reminder of all our blessings. So, I sometimes think of our tree as a tree full of blessings.
Changing it up
My husband likes to do the same things every year. But, growing up, we would sometimes change things up. One year, my parents took us to the rotating restaurant for dessert. It was the first and only time we did that and it was very special. That day still stands out in my mind as a great family memory. So now, I like to have one I guess per year that’s special and not the same. I want to spend my money on building memories with my children. I find changing things up and having surprise fun activities is a great way to do that.
What are some of your favourite Christmas traditions?
Originally posted 2016-11-26 04:32:27.