Christmas is my favorite time of year. I love decorating the tree, the joyful music, the taste of rich creamy hot chocolate topped with a mountain of mini marshmallows with just a hint of peppermint! Mmm…
This Christmas was extra special because it was the first time our little man was with us for his very first Christmas. Instead of following our families traditions, we decided it was time to create our own traditions for our little party of 3. Rob and I sat down and shared our ideas of what Christmas meant to each of us and how we wanted to celebrate it.
We both grew up with different family traditions. He has memories of waking up at 4am with his little sister, running down the stairs as fast as he could, and opening presents by the tree with his mom and dad. I remember going to my grandma and grandpa’s house, having a big Christmas Eve dinner, followed by watching endless Lifetime and Hallmark movies, and then picking my one gift to open.
As Micah grows older, I want him to get caught up in the magic and wonder of Christmas. I want him to write his letter to Santa and make his wish list, but I also want him to understand that it is as important to give gifts as it is to receive them. There are so many ways to give back during the season whether it be adopting a family, sorting and wrapping gifts at the Salvation Army, or volunteering in your local community; the possibilities are endless.
Since we were spending Christmas Day in Connecticut this year, we knew the majority of our family traditions would have to take place on Christmas Eve. I reached out to my Facebook network and asked for some advice on some of my friends favorite holiday traditions and I got some really great ideas!
We decided to kickoff the Christmas season by first taking photos with Santa.
On Christmas Eve we sat out milk and cookies, made an ornament with Micah’s handprint, wore matching pajamas, opened presents around the tree with our dogs, said a family prayer, and read “The Night Before Christmas” in bed. On Christmas morning we took family photos at the house and had french toast for breakfast. It was truly magical and is a memory I will always hold close to my heart.
As Micah gets older, we plan to incorporate Christmas caroling and a church service on Christmas Eve. I pray that, even though he will receive gifts on Christmas and will likely never “need” for anything, he never forgets the true meaning of the holiday. I envision him as a grown man with his family of his own one day. When it comes time for him to create traditions with his family, I hope he looks back on his childhood, smiles and remembers all of the heartfelt memories we created together as a family.