Traditions. The memories we have and hold dear for our whole lives. This last week has brought up much talk of traditions between my husband and I. My husband and I grew up with different traditions, for example when I was growing up most holidays were easy going days, there wasn't a lot of travel involved, usually it was just the four of us, or we would go up to my aunt's family's and celebrate. Occasionally we'd go see a movie. My husband, on the other hand, grew up with getting up really early and going up to his grandma's house and spending the entire holiday with almost every member of his extended family. To me thanksgiving is cooking and relaxing in my sweats all day with a few people, but to my husband thanksgiving is meant to be spent with your entire family, the men watching the game, the women hanging out in the kitchen.
Since we've been married, and most definitely since we've had kids, holidays have become rather busy affairs. We're blessed to have both sides of grandparents who want to be involved, so thanksgiving and especially Christmas can turn into a very busy time, trying to uphold everyone's long standing traditions. This year since our oldest is almost two and a half, we also want to start our own family traditions. A lot of questions have presented themselves to us in the last few weeks. Should we do Santa Clause, or should we not do Santa Clause? How big a deal should we make out of gifts? Especially as our kids get older? How do we keep the main focus on Christmas being about Christ's birth? These are all questions that every family has to answer for themselves, and we certainly have no idea if some of our ideas are going to achieve the results we are hoping for. Of course I guess we'll just learn from the mistakes we made with Jack and Anna, and by the time our family is complete we'll have it all figured out, right? Just kidding.
So this month will be filled with an Advent Calendar, cookie baking, and cozy nights watching Christmas movies as a family. I think one of the nicest traditions we've hopefully started is cutting down our tree, decorating it, and then watching a Christmas movie with some pizza. Simple, but hopefully something our children will look forward to every weekend after thanksgiving. However, when the kids are excited about the pretty Christmas tree or the gifts they have been given, we will be quick to remind them that the only reason they are able to enjoy these things is because of the Perfect Gift God gave to us two thousand years ago.
So what traditions do you and your family have, and what ways do you strive to keep the focus on Jesus?