I am so excited to partner with thirty-two bloggers all sharing how to have less stress and more peace this holiday season. Plus, we all joined together for the Christmas Blessing Giveaway where one winner will receive $320 in PayPal cash. Please take a moment to visit Woman to Woman Ministries who made all of this happen.
Thanksgiving has now passed, and as our family tradition dictates, Christmas is now brightening our home. Every year, the weekend after Thanksgiving is dedicated to taking down fall and putting up Christmas – usually with Christmas music playing. This year, we have company here, so our tree will stay boxed until they leave. And that’s okay. Modifying the tradition works better for us this year.
Each family has their own traditions surrounding Christmas, and other winter holidays. Traditions are wonderful! But don’t be bound to them. Sometimes our perspective changes, and we realize an old tradition doesn’t fit our family anymore. Or maybe life is a little bumpy this year, and we need to scale back. Perhaps we’ve discovered a new one we want to add.
I want to encourage you to write a list of your current traditions. Spend a little time thinking about each one. What feelings does it evoke? Do you get warm feelings or do you feel a burden steal across your heart? Do the traditions add to what you want your family to focus on? Once you decide which traditions you want to keep, have a discussion with your family about the current traditions, your thoughts on them, and maybe share some new ones you’d like to include.
One of our traditions is that each person gets a new pair of pajamas or nightie to open for Christmas Eve. This is the only time I buy brand new pajamas. The oldest child living at home goes shopping with me. We have a goal to average $10 or less per person. If we can buy one pajama set for $7, we can take the $3 extra and put it towards someone else’s pajamas if needed. It takes a little time and creativity to create matching pajama sets, but this is our only focus for this shopping trip. We have a lot of fun pulling this all together, and when we’ve reached our goal, we celebrate with a small bottle of eggnog, just for us.
On Christmas Eve, we all open our pajamas, snuggle into them, and then the kids pile onto the couch for photos. Two of my daughters are now married, and I passed the pajama buying torch to their husbands. They’ve chosen to continue this tradition for their own families.
Another tradition we used to have was having a big Christmas Day meal. After all the Christmas gifts were opened, and the wrappings put away, we then had to spend a few hours in the kitchen. One year, I questioned this misery. Sure we wanted to have the big meal, but at what cost? I couldn’t enjoy watching my kids playing with their new goodies. Or relax and enjoy my own goodies.
So we came up with a new plan. We have our big meal on Christmas Eve. Then we have our traditional Christmas Eve activities: opening our pajamas and one other gift, drinking eggnog, listening to Christmas stories, etc. On Christmas Day, we have some fruit (usually found in stockings), open our gifts (youngest to oldest one at a time), and then we have a wonderful Christmas Brunch. After that, we enjoy our gifts and time together as a family. Dinner? Leftovers!
Again, I want to encourage you to prayerfully think through your traditions, and evaluate what they add to your family. Decide what to keep, what to drop, what to modify, and maybe what to add. Let your traditions bring fun memories rather than stressful happenings.
So what traditions do you have? Have you found some you might want to add? Have some you want to drop or modify? I’d love to hear about your family’s traditions.
Christmas Blessing Giveaway Rules:
No purchase necessary. Must be 18 to enter. Void where prohibited by law. This giveaway is in no way sponsored, endorsed, or associated by Facebook. By entering this giveaway, you agree to release Facebook, Woman to Woman Ministries and all participating blogs of all liability. Contest ends at 12:01am EST on Tuesday, December 11, 2012. Winner is randomly chosen by Rafflecopter and will be emailed on December 11, 2012, then funds will be transferred to winner’s PayPal account.
Visit the other participating blogs for more ideas for a peaceful holiday season:
1. Woman to Woman Ministries
2. Sweet Blessings
3. Treasures Found in Him
4. Leaving a Legacy
5. Kelly Martin Stories
6. Happy Little Homemaker
7. The Encouraging Home
8. Christian Women’s Voice
9. Beautiful in Him
10. A Simple Life, Really?!
11. Managing Your Blessings
12. Thankful Homemaker
13. For Unmarried Christian Women
14. The Chuppies
15. Homemaker by Choice
16. Leaving a Legacy
17. Love, Friendship, & All Things Girly
18. My blog: Simply Audra Marie
19. Young Wife’s Guide
20. A Biblical Marriage
21. Becoming a Strong Woman of God
24. Renewing Housewives
25. Mothers on Mission
26. Awakened Anew
27. The Father Knows Best
28. Our Simple Farm
29. So You Call Yourself a Homeschooler
30. Getting It Right – Occasionally
31. Only A Breath
32. Kove’s Blog