December 1, 2011 by Carin
Yesterday, Gina talked about slowing down the holidays to really enjoy and savor time with her family. The holidays can be so busy and slowing down helps, but it also helps to enjoy family traditions, ones newly established as you have kids or traditions practiced while you were growing up. My husband and I have been married for 5 years and this will be our third Christmas celebrating with our daughter and our first with our son. We are looking forward to this Christmas; Grace is starting to get it. She ohhs and ahhs over the holiday lights outside peoples homes and loves to point out decorated Christmas trees. We are starting to establish our Christmas traditions with our kids and will probably tweak them the next few years to find what works best for us. This year we have a few things already on the calendar to make sure we take the time and enjoy our traditions. Our weekends tend to be pretty laid back, so getting them on the calendar is pretty easy, though as the years go on, I am sure that won’t always be the case, but our traditions are important to us, so we will make them a priority.
This weekend we will be taking an afternoon and making our way to a cut your own Christmas tree farm. We have been doing this for the last five years and last year Grace loved trekking through the snow to hunt for our tree. We bring our dog Carter and have pictures taken with Santa; which is a lot easier then waiting in line at the mall. Once the tree has been set up and had its time to rest (what my mom and dad use to tell us the tree needed to do) we put some Christmas music on and decorate. Once decorated, we turn off the lights and enjoy our tree. One tradition involving the tree that I have read about on various blogs is a few days before Christmas, the room the tree is in is turned into one big bed and the family sleeps under the tree together. A special movie is watched, cookies are eaten and cocoa is served. I think this would be a fun addition to the holiday season and what better way to enjoy the tree with all the pretty lights.
A tradition I am excited to share with Grace this year is cooking baking and decorating. My mom has made the same sugar cookie recipe as long as I can remember. Every Christmas we cut them out, bake them and then create a rainbow of icing and decorate the cookies. It was always fun to see what everyone came up with and how some were more intricate then others and always a sweet, sticky fun mess. I can’t wait to see how Grace decorates her cookies and what sprinkles she will put on the them. We will also bake some other favorites and try out a few new recipes. Yum!
A new tradition this year that my husband and I are starting is going to a holiday themed play. We will be taking Grace to the Stage Theatre Company to see A Silent Night for Peef . We are going to make an afternoon of this by seeing the play and then going out to dinner afterwards. We will get a little dressed up and make this a special occasion.
So those are my family traditions for this Christmas season, nothing to crazy or difficult, but always fun. We don’t want any of them to feel stressful or difficult because it is about spending time with our family and enjoying the season, as well as establishing meaningful traditions our kids will look forward to year after year, and hopefully continue on when they have their own families.
What holiday traditions does your family partake in during the holiday season? What are your favorite family traditions?