There’s something about the Christmas season that can make it hard to breath. Life seems to speed up thanks to all the extra Christmas parties, rehearsals, pageants, shows, recitals, ack! But I long for Christmas to be a time to slow down and focus on what it really means. A small season to focus on the greatest gift of all and the many gifts He’s given us. For my family, that takes the shape of traditions. Some are pretty normal. Others you might not quite expect. Here’s a quick look at a few of our traditions:
- Time with family. Christmas is a time when we spend days with my extended family. It is a time we all cherish. Cousins, often separated by hundreds of miles, spend every moment playing, laughing, shopping, connecting. Celebrating the gift of the family that God gave us. Out of all the people on this large world, He planted us in two amazing families…and that is a gift we celebrate.
ADORNAMENTS: A week ago, my six-year-old asked me why we hadn’t started the Adornaments yet. These are simple ornaments that highlight the different names of Christ with devotions for each day. Because we homeschool, these simple Christmas ornaments are a part of our daily devotions…an opportunity to recenter our thoughts on the true reason for the season.
- The Best Christmas Pageant Ever. Come on. Raise your hands if you’ve ever read this charming story of the Herdmans inaugural experience with the nativity story. It’s a hilarious and heart-touching look at a story we all know so well that we’ve often forgotten just how special and amazing it is. So we either read it outloud together or get the tapes from the library. But either way, this story is part of our Christmas celebration.
- Cookies! We love to bake…and bake…and bake. We put together assortments of cookie plates to take to our neighbors. We may not connect often, but at least once a year we can let our neighbors know we see them and appreciate them. And if life gets too hectic like it did last year, then the treat is homemade Chex Mix. I don’t think it matters so much what we make as that it is given with love from grateful hearts.
Traditions are important not only for the fact that they give us moments to stand with our past and future…but because they give us a connection with each other. What are some of your Christmas traditions?
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