With the changing leaves and falling temperatures, there's no doubt that fall is here! As mothers, we always try to stay a step ahead of the chaos and this month we're taking some time to share our thoughts on holiday celebrations, family traditions and maybe some new ideas about how to enjoy the upcoming season. So grab that cup of cinnamon-spiced coffee, prop your feet up on a pumpkin and enjoy what our writers have to say this month. ~TMC My husband and I have enjoyed establishing our family and getting to talk about different traditions we bring from each side, as well as what new traditions we want to begin with our children. There are two main activities we have decided to make a part of every Christmas celebration.
1. The Advent Calendar
The Advent Calendar is something that neither of our families ever used growing up, but Andy and I have enjoyed making it a part of our Christmas the last two years. There are so many you can choose from. I opted for making ours. I sewed 24 draw-string fabric pouches to allow myself plenty of variety. I also made 24 magnets with different Bible passages that together tell the Christmas story. Every year, I also buy 24 little treats. So far, I’ve only used candy, but since Gabriel will be old enough to enjoy opening the pouches this year, I’m also going to include little gifts for him—stickers, balls, homemade treats. Every morning, starting December 1st, we go to the basket with the pouches. We take the pouch for the day, open it, read the passage from the Christmas Story, place it on the fridge, and enjoy the little “treat.” It’s a very small part of our day, but it’s a neat way to make the Christmas joy last longer. We enjoy a little gift each day, while remembering the greatest gift in our lives, as well as so many blessings we can’t even name them. I hope this is something we continue every year with Gabriel—that he will look forward to that anticipation that is so precious in children, and that we as adults tend to forget sometimes. Hope is a beautiful virtue that we can instill in our children, and when we hope in truth, it will never disappoint.
2. Get a gift, give a gift.
Another tradition that we hope to establish once Gabriel becomes more understanding of his possessions is to have him choose a toy to give away at every birthday and Christmas. We hope to find an orphanage, toy drive, or other donation means by which our children can learn the joy of giving to others in need. For adults, we have so many means by which to give—finances, time, a meal from our kitchen. For children, they really only have the gifts they receive as a means to give in return. We hope to encourage our children to choose one gift to give away every holiday. We would love to even encourage sacrificial giving—maybe even a favorite toy, or one that we know a child in need would really enjoy. We hope this will help balance the mentality of only “getting.” This will also help cut out all that accumulation as well J.
We’re still adding to our list of traditions! What ways are you intentional during the holiday season?