Thursday, December 18, 2008

New Traditions

View of Candles and a Christmas Tree Through a Window
Candles and a Christmas Tree Through a Window

We have some Christmas traditions that don't change from year to year, but we also like to try out new traditions too. This year we've added a couple that I think we will keep.

We keep all the Christmas cards we receive in a decorative basket in the entryway. This year we are bringing the basket to the table at supper and one of the kids picks a card out of the basket, When we pray before we eat, we pray for the family who sent us the card. It's a nice way to remember to pray for our friends and family.

The second tradition that we are trying out is "secret pals". I thought it would be fun if we put all of our names in a hat and each draw a name. We are going to try to do nice things for our secret pal (preferably free things) and then we'll all reveal our pals on Christmas morning. It's fun to watch the kids try to think up what to do that won't get them "caught". They are enjoying the "sneakiness factor" of the whole thing. I'm hoping that this will promote a little sibling love and togetherness.

If you have any great free secret pal ideas I would love to hear them. So far they have done things like make beds for secret pals, leave pieces of candy on pillows and write notes in handwriting that's supposed to look like someone else's.

What are your favorite traditions? Do any of them change from year to year?


Anonymous said...

Our family started doing a secret santa "thing" last year ( same as your secret pal except we call it secret santa :) ) We chose names from a hat on December 1st and we will all find out the night of Christmas Eve who our secret santa was all this time. In our family, your secret santa could leave you notes in your stocking, candy treats, do a good deed for you( secretly of course) or anything else they would like to do :) My kids have given some of their toys to eachother ( secret santa to secret person) that they know their secret person likes, make special presents like pictures, paintings, beadwork, etc...It's grea to also purchse your secret person's favorite candy or treat and give them that :) My secret santa has been giving me lots of ghiradelli chocolate bars with caramel inside!!! mmmmmm! :) Have fun!!!

we also get visits from santa's elves and they leave little things in our advent calendar :) You can read more about this on my blog :)

Seraphim said...

That is such a lovely idea, for the secret pals! It wouldn't quite work in our house as there's only two of us (might make the 'secret' part a little tricky!)... but when we have kids, I'm definately doing that!
Great idea, very creative.

I hope you all have a very merry Christmas :)

Terri said...

What a wonderful idea praying for each family that gave you a card. That's a keeper!

Serah said...

We took an old Christmas tree that we had and put it up in our dining room and I tie the Christmas cards we receive on it. This is the second year that we've done it and we love it!

One tradition is to watch "Meet Me in St. Louis" on Christmas Eve. It's my absolute favorite movie!

Woman's Essence said...

Very touching and thoughtful idea about sharing a family prayer for each family that gave you a Christmas card. Sounds like something wonderful to start here :) We do have a family tradition that we've shared together since my children were very young (both are teenagers now and still enjoy and look forward to it). Listening to the song The Twelve days of Christmas I always thought how nice it would be to share that with them so each year I buy 12 little gifts for each of them, wrap them, place them into a basket. They each pick out a little gift daily from the gift basket until Christmas Day arrives. It's been fun watching them through the years and hearing them ask about it each year makes me smile. Wishing you All a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New year!

Ginger said...

Every year, my children get a pair of new jammies. They open them on Christmas eve. We also usually put our tree up the Friday after Thanksgiving. Not sure what else we do.

the voice of melody said...

What wonderful traditions those are! I can't say we really have any set tradition other than baking cookies for the neighbors. We sometimes go out of town on Christmas so we don't celebrate it the exact same way each year, with set traditions. When we're in town, we always go to our church on Christmas Eve though.

Merry Christmas to you and yours!