My husband and I have a pretty “young” family. We have been married for just shy of three years, our oldest will be two in a week, and we are trying to gear through what traditions we would like to create as a family. We’ve both grown up with Christmas traditions, many the same, many different, and we are working on possibly changing it up a bit with our own family. I admit trying to be a bit much as a mom, meaning, I want my kids to grow up remembering a mom that made them things, a mom that took them to activities, a mom that was there for them unconditionally. Saying that, I also don’t want to seem like a helicopter mom either. I’m pretty good about letting my children be independent but I really do want to build traditions for them to look back on their childhood with fondness. So, I’ve been looking around for activities we may start throwing into our traditions list as the years pass every Christmas. Here are several Holiday Activities that I found to be great options.
1. Pictures with Santa. We don’t really talk much about Santa to my daughter and as such this first trip to get a picture with Santa was interesting.
2. Write a Special Letter to Santa. My husband and I have had several discussions about Santa, we don’t want our kids to necessarily hold on to Santa too long but we also don’t want to deprive them of the childhood fun and fantasy of it all. (Perhaps a post on this alone will happen in the future)
3. Bake & Decorate Cookies, I think the mess of this one will probably deter me from this for a while but as my kids get older this will be a fun one.
4. Drive around to see Christmas lights. Where we live, I feel like less and less people decorate for Christmas. I seem to remember a ton of lights every year as a kid but driving around now can be a challenge to find something. My parents were always the brightest house on the block and I do plan to continue that tradition. If nothing else they’ll see the lights there. We have a Botanical Gardens here that does amazing Christmas lights every year. When the kids are older and can handle being out in the cold a bit better we may go to that yearly.
5. Buy Gifts for Siblings and wrap them. I definitely want to teach my kids selflessness and giving, especially to their siblings.
6. Donate food to the Food Bank. Again, teaching my kids selflessness and giving.
7. Build a Snowman. Definitely when we have enough snow.
8. Clean out and donate toys to a worthy organization. Selflessness and clean out the piles of old toys they don’t play with anymore.
9. Christmas Eve Pajamas and Movie. My sister does this with her kids and I’ve discussed it with my husband as a great idea. Christmas Eve the kids open one present, which are Christmas pajamas, they put them on and then everyone watches a new movie before bed.
10. Decorate the Christmas Tree. This year, since our two-year-old gets into everything and doesn’t quite understand not messing with tree decorations, we decided to put up our tree but we didn’t decorate it. It’s a pre-lit tree and it has the star on top and that’s it. I love it, it still works well, but as my kids get older I want to make a big deal of us all decorating together.
What are some of your Christmas traditions? What have you tried that you have found just doesn’t work well for your family? What is new and different from when you grew up?