Canadian Needle Nana had a great post yesterday of 10 things on her Christmas To-Do list. Knowing that this year is a little different from other years... less gathering and parties, etc. Are there some traditions that are 'must do's' on your list or will you be adding some new one's this year?
As 2020 has been an interesting year, I eased my 'no decorating for Christmas until after Thanksgiving' this year and we have a tree in the house 3 days before Thanksgiving! All decorated as of last night. Knowing we all love the cheerful decorations around the house, we might as well put them out now and enjoy them. I will be so ready to pack them up January 1st though!
Here is my list of 10 things I want to do this holiday season.
1.) Baking Christmas cookies. This is always fun and reminds me of baking as a girl with the 8 - track Christmas music playing in the background.... right Mom? The kids love decorating sugar cookies and I might try to make homemade gingerbread this year.... we will see!
2.) Family movie nights - for the Home Alone series, Polar Express, the standard 'kid' tv Christmas specials. These movies always make me laugh and laughter is the best medicine. We always get hot cocoa during that scene in the Polar Express, too!
3.) Read Charles Dickens 'A Christmas Carol'. I have always loved Dickens.... my first cat was named Oliver Twist after all! I am debating on reading this myself.... or out loud to the kids. We have not read a book together since last summer. I just need to finish off the one I am reading right now first.
4.) Go hiking with the family on the trails near our house. It is finally cool enough to enjoy it!
5.) Help out a family in need. This changes year to year in what is done but I always try to find a way to give back.... usually anonymous.
6.) Gingerbread houses - the kids make them every year since we moved down here and it has become quite the tradition.
7.) lighting candles every evening and enjoying the lit Christmas tree and decorations. I might have spent some Birthday money to purchase some Partylite tealights and a few votives. I love how they burn and I have lots of Partylite holders that they work well in. (mostly all my snow globes)
8.) Go visit the house 1/4 a mile from us that does an outdoor display to music every year. We enjoy going and just watching the lights move to the music a few times during the season.
9.) The elf on the shelf..... so, the kids now know.... but still get a kick out of searching for him every morning. I can tell you he will be put in a jar with a quarantine sign Friday morning..... hehehehe.... can't be too careful you know!
10.) Drive around and see all the Christmas lights and houses and lawn decorations. People tend to go a wee bit crazy on the lights front down here in Florida but it is so nice to drive around and see them. We are lucky and have a neighbor who goes all out right across the street from us for all the holidays.
I am sure there are other things - the kids love their Christmas countdown snakes which have been requested again this year. Just a version of an advent calendar to unwrap each day - something little like a chocolate or a hand sanitizer for their backpack. They are getting older so the standard things I used to get they are growing out of....It used to be easy to get it all at the dollar tree store - the washcloth that gets bigger in water, all the little toys, silly putty, jacks games, etc.
I'm a little sad I can't do the cookie exchange this year... but the host just went out of state with a friend for a birthday celebration and was visiting various restaurants and bars and has admitted it will be a mask optional event as she has not worn one in months. Calculated risks have me declining this year.
What special things do you do every year? I'd love to hear about your special traditions.
The decorated tree. The kids humored me this year knowing I love the white lights, white garland and my maroon and white hanging candles onto the tree. It is so fun to see their faces as they unwrap all the ornaments - mine, their Dad's from growing up and theirs from the last 11+12 years. This year Emily's is a chicken coop with chickens and Aidan's is an old Christmas car with a tree on top. Guess she could not find a spaceX one! He did watch the launch last night... I hear it was the best one yet to see across the clear sky in the dark last night.
Emily had just come home from riding when they decided to start on the tree while I started dinner. Homemade sweet potato fries, cooked zucchini with scallions and kielbassa.