These are a few of our favourite things...
Mrs. Helinda talked with her kids and found out some of their favourite Christmas traditions and special moments over the years!
The other day my kids and I were chatting about our favorite Christmas memories and I was surprised by what they shared.
It wasn’t the biggest and best presents they received that they recalled but rather the Christmas traditions we have at this time of year.
It made me think that it’s not all the stuff we get that leaves a lasting impression but the people we share our time with that really matters.
Here were their top traditions in no particular order:
ADVENT – COUNTDOWN TO CHRISTMAS
Advent; as soon as the calendar switches to December the countdown to Christmas begins and my kids can’t wait to see what form advent will take. So, in this case they love the tradition of ADVENT but are not a slave to how we do it. One year it was a book that walked us through advent. For a few years it was numbered set of tiny tins they opened each morning to discover scriptures and treats inside. Another year it was more like a treasure hunt and last year I made a labour of love advent calendar which was a favorite. This year…don’t even get me started…I caved and bought them each their own chocolate advent calendar…not as big a hit as years gone by but I’ll try pick up my game J
CHRISTMAS ORNAMENTS & TREE SET UP
Each year I give the kids a Christmas ornament so that one day when they move out on their own they will have a box full of ornaments to decorate their own tree. I never realized how much they treasure this tradition. When selecting ornaments, sometimes I go with a general theme…like all different snowman or snowflakes picking specific ones for specific kids and sometimes I see an ornament that just makes me think of a kid in particular…like a butterfly for Violet or a pair of skates for Liam. I know what you’re thinking…my tree must not be so pretty…ohhhh, but it is. Sure, it won’t make the cover of a magazine but it’s branches are heavy with memories and love.
The kids love that we chose a night when everyone is home to decorate the tree. We bring down our ornament boxes, pop in our favorite Christmas CD and decorate all together. When all the ornaments are on we put the star on top of the tree. We take turns and each year a different kid is hoisted up by Bill to put up the star …mind you…a few of our kids are taller than us so they might not need to be hoisted up in years to come.
PAJAMAS & STOCKINGS ON CHRISTMAS EVE
Yup, every year they get to open their stockings and one gift which is a new pair of pajamas on Christmas Eve. The stockings are often filled with hand-made or edible treats and the pj’s are not Christmassy but rather ones they will wear the whole year through. I’m not sure how long this pajama tradition will last since my boys don’t really like to wear pajamas and my girls often sleep in old t-shirts.
CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICE
The kids love it…maybe partially because they know I love the candlelight Christmas Eve service where we sing Christmas songs and hymns by candlelight.
This topped the list for sure! Their idea of a GREAT time is a house full of people including parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and second cousins of all ages. And when I say houseful…I mean it..over 50 people at times sharing a Christmas meal, playing games, singing, trading gifts. It may seem chaotic…and sometimes it is…but we all love it!
They also love family holiday movie nights, driving around at night looking at lights, taking in a holiday attraction or Christmas concert together, making Gingerbread houses, holiday baking etc.
So these are a few of our favorite things and a good reminder that ITS NOT ABOUT SPENDING MONEY ON ALL THE STUFF BUT SPENDING TIME WITH THOSE YOU LOVE.
We’d love to hear about a few of your favorite things!