Linking up with Jen from Conversation Diary for 7 Quick Takes.
One of the greatest things about marriage is combining Christmas traditions and making our own. After five years of marriage and one baby later we’ve finally figured out what ours will be. Here are a list of my favorites that we’ll be doing this year.
1. Cutting down our Christmas tree the first Sunday in Advent.
This tradition started with my Papa who took me out in the snowy woods of upstate New York to cut down our own tree. It was always so much fun to wander the fields of the Christmas tree farm and “help” my Dad and Papa saw down the tree. Plus my sisters and I always got hot chocolate. 🙂
Frank went for the first time this year in North Jersey and loved it! As usual, we got a beautiful Frazier that resembles a tall Christmas bush. (We like Griswold style trees)
2. Actually celebrating the feast of St. Nicholas. What a better way to teach kids who Santa Clause actually is? I love the feast of St. Nicholas because it beautifully ties in the birth of Christ (aka the whole purpose of Christmas) to Santa.
There are a few things we do to celebrate this feast day:
-Watch the cartoon: “Nicholas, the Boy who became Santa” This is such a sweet little movie. It teaches little ones about how St. Nicholas gave to the poor, and how the tradition of him coming down the Chimney started.
-Place our Shoe’s on the fireplace. In the morning, Frankie finds tiny presents in his shoe. (You can do candy too, but we try to avoid it)
-Decorate a Christmas stocking. I found a kit for $5 at Target, or you can make one on your own with construction paper, glue, and sparkle glitter.
3. The Advent Wreath.
I’ve done this tradition since I was a little girl. At dinnertime during each Sunday of Advent, you light a Christmas candle leading up to Christmas day. The pink candle represents the last Sunday in Advent.
It’s something I always look forward to because it gives us a few moments to pray together as a family, besides going to Mass. Ours is really simple, and I need to still buy some pine to put around it.
4. The Elf on the Shelf
This tradition came reluctantly. Steve and I weren’t really into this whole Elf thing until we went to my Mom’s and Frank spotted the Elf up on a picture frame.
He tip toed up to the Elf and started talking to it right away. With a huge smile he goes: “Um, ummmm, hi elf!! I like you! Ummm, I’d like, hmmmmmmm…………toys please!!!!”
We read him the book and I was sold. It’s well written and adorable. So thanks to my mom we are now an Elf on the Shelf family. And I love it.
5. Sleeping under the Tree
This advent tradition comes from Steve’s side. The night they decorated the Christmas tree, all the boys would camp out underneath it together. This will be Frank’s first year doing this. 🙂
|My Dad watching “A Christmas Carol” on Christmas Eve…another great tradition|
6. The Jesse Tree
The Jesse tree basically represents Jesus’ family tree. The name “Jesse” is taken from Isaiah 11:1, in which Jesus is referred to as a shoot coming up from the stump of Jesse, the father of David.
The ornaments on the Jesse tree teach kids (and parents) of Jesus’ ancestors, and of the events leading to Jesus’ birth.
It can be a small tree in a living room or for you crafty sewing types you can make one from felt. (Just don’t ask me how.)
My favorite Jesse tree ornaments are here.
7. Advent Calender
Here are 3 I love:
Wishing you and yours a stress free holiday season…what does your family do for Advent?