First an update. Our shopping yesterday went well. Only one meltdown on behalf of Brie and I now have everything I need for holiday gift giving. I also found sheets of chipboard instead of just shapes (Hobby Lobby in case anyone else is looking.)
We have a few traditions here at our house for Christmas. Some have been passed down from our parents while others are new for us.
I am amazed some people do not do stockings, we love them and both had them growing up. In fact, both of our mothers handmade our stockings. I feel like I have dropped the ball on that one. Oh well, can’t do it all right? My girls traditionally get pencils, stickers, bandaids, a new toothbrush, and an orange in theirs…daddy gets a chocolate orange in place of the girly stuff. We always have a couple other fun little things to put in there.
Every year when I was growing up, my mom gave us a Christmas ornament for the tree. When I got married we had purchased some rather plain bulbs, but had 19 ornaments on there that really made the tree feel old and familiar. I treasured that tradition and am doing the same for my girls. Their ornaments have ranged from Veggie Tales painted on slate to princesses dresses. Here are a few former and the current:
We have a nativity down where the girls can play with it. I am not sure if she did this while her boys were all young, but Forest’s mom always has had the nativity down low since I have know her. Mind you hers is old and missing a piece or two. Ours is a Little People nativity with pieces missing. It is the true reason for Christmas and I want my girls to feel a part of it. So much of the preparation and celebration is for adults, especially the days leading up to. My girls like having the nativity under the tree, I like seeing them play with it and knowing they know that it isn’t just a week of toys and sweets.
A new pair of PJ’s for Christmas Eve. By this time of year, everyone needs a set. It has the added bonus of better Christmas morning pictures seeing as there are no shots of frayed nightgowns and holey pants. You all know the photos I’m talking about. Sometimes the pajamas are wrapped up, sometimes not. If I am on top of my game, they are washed, wrapped, and waiting under the tree for bedtime. The twins’ this year are warm blanket sleepers. I’m hoping to do some embroidery on the older two’s red long johns…I’ll post photos if I get it accomplished. If you have suggestions of what to embroider on there let me know. Right now I am thinking snowflakes, an outhouse, a moon, or a Christmas tree.
Doesn’t everyone have a shelf, cupboard or something of that like that is full of gifts waiting to be wrapped? My parents always had them wrapped, but not labelled. Yeah, there was only a couple times that we opened gifts and mom would say “switch with your sister, sorry about that.” That brings me to gifts.
The rule of three
A tradition we started to keep the gifts from getting out of hand is the rule of three. Each child gets three gifts aside from their stocking. I try to keep a nice balance of things they need, want, would like, etc. Since none of my girls read this blog as of yet, here is what everyone is getting:
Jane: her portfolio, a learning to draw kit, underwear and “bra” set (sorry guys, but it is around age 8 that girls start wondering about these things.) In here stocking will be the traditional contents as well as craft kits, a new swim cap, and some fashion cards (back to that 8 year olds starting to care about these things.)
Liz: her portfolio, a soccer goal, and Tinkerbelle Christmas lights for the tree in their room (she’s a fan of Tink.) In her stocking will be the traditional as well as some craft kits, a spatula, timer, and glitter spray
CeeCee and Brie: muffs (go hereif you have no clue what I am talking about), magnadoodles (pink of course), and between the two of them and table with chairs and a tea set. Their stockings will have the traditional goodies as well as a Minnie Mouse and bubbles.
At 1PM on Christmas Day it is a rule….you go to Grandma’s house. When I was little and her mom was alive it was at her house. I remember being up while it was still dark to open presents and hitting the road to go to Great Grandma Leonard’s house. Now, this was a compromise from going there Christmas Eve. Apparently that was the old tradition, my mom however broke tradition (she’s the rock the boat type) after they started having us kids they didn’t show up until Christmas morning. I still have one aunt who sticks with the old tradition and is still here on Christmas Eve. Aunt Jean, if you are reading, comment and let me know if you have ever missed a Christmas Eve (when the girls were little, or perhaps weather?) Not getting down on traditions like this, trust me, I admire long-standing tradition and really look forward to seeing everyone that still comes on Christmas Day! Thankfully, Grandma lives here in our same small town with my parents. We see her every week, and on Christmas week we will likely see her nearly every day, so I don’t feel guilty about not being there on Christmas Eve if we have other plans.
Speaking of other plans, it’s only one of the places we have to be. There is Forest’s mom, my other Grandma, my parent’s celebration, and then our own little families Christmas morning. Again, we are blessed beyone belief to live in the same small town as all these people and only have to travel a block or two to some of these celebrations!
What are some of your Christmas traditions? Any new ones that you have started, old ones passed down from generations?
I love hearing how others celebrate!
This post is being submitted as part of the Holidays at Home collection at Sew, Mama, Sew