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Old 11-09-2009, 07:56 AM   #1
1braydon
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Christmas tradition ideas.

Growing up It was just me and my mom, and i dont have any real memories of anything we did every year, I want to start making lasting memories with my children with traditions. I also want to scale back on the tons of gifts and replace them with traditions and reasons for giving. My children are ages 5, 3, 2, and 5 months. I will start with telling you things we already do and then list things I want to start this year.

They each get a personalized ornament every year.

We go and look at christmas lights.


the things I want to start this year.

only 1 gift from Santa, it will be left unwrapped under the tree. Some years this may be a big gift to all of them, sometimes personal to each.

then 3 gifts from parents, we can put these under the tree right away, and let them imagine what could be in there.

and then as a family draw names...like secret santa, although, at there ages I doubt it will be very secret.. the amount per gift this year will be $5, we will take each child to pick a gift for the person whos name they drew and let them wrap it.

and lastly each of us will get a big stocking full of goodies.

So what traditions does your family have? or any other ideas?

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Old 11-09-2009, 08:04 AM   #2
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Re: Christmas tradition ideas.

advent calendar
making an advent wreath
adopting child/ren through salvation army & shopping for them
3 gifts each
christmas eve Mass & we make a special dinner (seafood)
going to the christmas tree farm & picking out a tree
"decorating" a tree in our yard for the wildlife w/edible ornaments

hth!
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:09 AM   #3
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Re: Christmas tradition ideas.

you know growing up we did lots of different things. There were 4 of us growing up. So we would do the drawing names thing. Not every year but I remember doing it. I don't think we had one thing we did every year. with 4 kids I'm not surprised my mom & dad didn't remember or keep sticking with something. BUT i have extremely happy memories of Christmas. We were/are a very close family and I think that was enough for us all to have happy memories of our child hood. But I think starting traditions are fun and hope to have some for my kids. They are 3 and 1 so soon I guess we'll figure that out!!
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:10 AM   #4
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Re: Christmas tradition ideas.

oh yeah, since dh and i have been married we always go and pick out a live tree. Last year I had to do it alone with my 3 year old. Wasn't the same!! (dh was out of the country til the week of Christmas)
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:10 AM   #5
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Re: Christmas tradition ideas.

These are wonderful Idea's. I usually try to make our gifts for everyone and our kids only get a few gifts each but I usually make them a blankets and then they get the one gift they have asked for. This year for ods is a ROBOT! he's been asking since his b-day!
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:18 AM   #6
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Re: Christmas tradition ideas.

My kids get to open a present on Chrismas eve which is always PJs. That way they wake up on Chistmas with their new jammies on. I buy them at the after Christmas sales to use the following year.
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:19 AM   #7
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Re: Christmas tradition ideas.

In early November we do Operation Christmas Child and make gift boxes for needy kids (this is more tied in with Thanksgiving, though, since the boxes have to go out pretty early).

Set an advent wreath on the table and light 1 new candle each week (candles lit during supper). We talk about what each candle represents.

Christmas Eve we attend church and open presents after church, rather than Christmas morning.

Each child gets 3 gifts (the same number that Jesus traditionally received). One is a personalized ornament, one is a large gift, and one is small. All gifts are from Mommy and Daddy (no Santa here).

The kids go in with Mommy to get Daddy a gift, and in with Daddy to get Mommy a gift. We don't exchange gifts among the kids b/c it just gets to be too much.

They also each get a gift from their grandparents, but nothing beyond that, and we don't give gifts to other friends or relatives, either. We fought long and hard to scale back the ridiculous gifting among extended family/friends, and they finally seem to get it

Each grandparent gets a gift that we make as a family. Typically a photo calendar and something else (this year it's homemade glycerin soaps).

We send out a Christmas letter to family and friends in December.
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:36 AM   #8
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Re: Christmas tradition ideas.

We're starting one this year of wrapping our oodles of Christmas themed books. Then count back from Christmas with how many books you have. Ds will pick one book a night to unwrap and read.
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:37 AM   #9
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Re: Christmas tradition ideas.

we do the ornament every year.. (that started back with me when I was a toddler.. it's so fun to put all mine on the tree every year. )

We make cookies/candy for a couple different neighbors..

we go look at lights every year.. I read about a family in my familyfun magazine that makes a game out of hunting out the best light display, then leaves them a note that says something like, "congrats! you won The Smith's Favorite light display Award! and they leave that with a small box of chocolates or something. It said it was always a fun thing because they got to go out and decide as a family which lights were the best. I might do that this year..

i'd love to do the 3 gifts per child but we don't have gifts coming from outside sources,(besides 1 from my mom) and I would think that most of the people that have this "rule" have a bigger family than I to kinda fill out the gifts. We put the brakes on gift giving a couple years ago.. I literally haven't seen my sister in YEARS.. atleast 10, is telling me I have her and her kids to buy for.. and then DH was telling me we had to buy gifts for his niece & nephew, which we once again haven't seen in 101 years..

Ummmm.... No?

I might add my brother to my list, since I see him more often.. get them like a GC to Blockbuster for the family or something.
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:46 AM   #10
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Re: Christmas tradition ideas.

One silly little thing I did last year that my dd is already talking about again this year is I took the kids out one snowy day and we 'planted' candy cane seeds in the snow in our back yard (the round hard peppermint candies that you can get super cheap)-then early the next morning I removed the candies and replaced them with candy canes.....we went out after breakfast and checked our 'seeds' and my kids freaked out when they saw that they had grown into candy canes Something small and simple but it was really fun and its now going to be a yearly tradition until my kids are too old for it Super cheap too!
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