Santa can be really fun, but there are two things I worry about a little (and I may worry to much, ha!). #1 that it takes the focus off of Christ. Who want to think about that when a big jolly guy is about to bring us presents?!? #2 that it focuses on getting. "What will Santa bring for me?" But I found a really cool idea on Pinterest to still keep some Santa fun, but avoid those two things. Here's the deal: On Christmas Eve each child picks out a certain number of toys (5-10ish) to put in a special bag. Santa will pick up the bags and take them to boys and girls who don't have toys (a.k.a. you donate them to a shelter or needy family). This way your kids are giving first and there's still some Santa mystery (you could still put out cookies and milk with the bags too!). Not to mention it helps cut down clutter and keep the number of toys manageable. :) You can read more about it here.
As you may have seen, I tried making us special Christmas pajamas this year and pretty much fell flat on my face. Sigh. But I at least have a decent pair for N & me to use again, so I could get by just making new pants for the kiddos. Or maybe I'll buy them jammies. We'll see. I just like the idea of getting special new pj's to wear on Christmas. And especially this idea of a big box on Christmas Eve full of new jammies, a Christmas movie, popcorn, and hot chocolate.
This one is kind of similar to the jammies I guess. Also from Pinterest, I think it would be really fun to make a special Christmas pillow case for each kid that they can use all through the Christmas season. And, you know, maybe for me too. I like a good, Christmassy time as much as the next kid.
Yes. All my ideas are from Pinterest. :) This one is just a fun Christmas countdown - you wrap a Christmas book for each day in December (until Christmas Eve) and open one to read each night before bed. I need to start collecting Christmas books!
We've found that we really love making ornaments to mark ages and special times for Baby B. It's something we plan to continue every year. Here are a few favorites:
My dad and sister made this last year at Baby B's first Christmas. It's just a clear glass ball with his hand printed in acrylic paint. Easy, pretty, and ohmygosh look how tiny that hand is.
A snowman hand print ornament made by my MIL this year.
Baby B's "Christmas pickle" from last year - also known as his favorite toy turned ornament.
We really want to start an Advent calendar. There are some super cute design ideas on.... Pinterest! Surprise! But I haven't found what I want to fill the calendar with yet. This is one thing I really want to have based in Scripture. I definitely want each package to have Scripture verses to read together, and hopefully some kind of activity to go along with that. But I don't know the details yet. Ideas? Anyone?
Spend time on Christmas Eve reading the Christmas story together. That's all. And maybe playing with the Nativity set too. :)
We kind of got off easy this year because Baby B didn't know what was going on. :) But next year I think we need to have more of a plan. Hopefully we'll have at least a few of these ideas ready to go. What do you think? Which idea do you like the best/least? Do you have a favorite Christmas tradition with your kids? Fill us in!