Traditions. The holiday season is FILLED with them. Our family is blended – which means we have my families traditions, my husband’s family traditions, and his late wife’s traditions (which are still important to pass on to our children.) However, we have to be careful to keep the holiday season from turning into a fast paced, whirlwind and keep the true meaning of the season at the forefront of our hearts and minds. How can we do that? Here are
- Keep Jesus First – I almost hate to type those words. They seem like the basics to remember – especially at Christmas time, when we are celebrating the birth of Jesus. Yet, I think this is the things we forget first. We get wrapped up – literally, in the idea of Christmas. The gifts, the food, the traditions. We need to be sure we focus on the Lord this season. This year, in order to keep my focus on Christ, I will be studying with Good Morning Girls. We will be reading in the book of Psalms- and I will be following along with an Advent Study as well! As we set our affections on things above- we will leave some of the little things here on Earth behind.
- Choose traditions that have meaning– Between three families, we have lots of traditions that we could hold to. When to watch a certain Christmas movie, when to bake the cookies, and what to put on the tree – or if you even HAVE a tree! Choose the traditions that have meaning- first for the true meaning of Christmas, and the for your family. Choose the ones that give you moments to bond, moments to talk about God and His love for us, and moments to give. These are the memories that will last- and these are the traditions that will have the most meaning!
- Choose traditions that focus on others – If we are honest, a lot of our traditions focus on self. The reason we keep doing them – is selfish as well. We don’t feel like Christmas would be the same without them. So, we keep them. Something my family did last year was to make some new traditions- not for the sake of having new traditions- but that would focus on others – and mainly, those who are not often thought of. We put M&M’s in our mailbox to say thank you to the mail person. We did Operation Christmas Child- and each of my children filled shoe boxes for others. This year, we have chosen some new organizations and people to make feel special this holiday season. Each one will include something about the REAL reason for Christmas. My kids are talking about THESE new traditions more then the cookies, the tree, and even the present
- Watch for Tradition Overload– If you do have a long list of traditions- watch for the overload factor. When the kids are no longer having fun – when YOU are no longer having fun – it is overload! When you can’t keep up – your on overload! When your husband gets frustrated at “ANOTHER TRADITION” – you have hit overload! One way to avoid this overload is to talk to family before you even get to the Christmas season- and predetermine what you are going to do. If you are already in the holiday swing- rethink the rest of the calendar. Just be sure you keep everyone in mind when you cut a tradition. Also, remember, just because you don’t make a gingerbread house this year- doesn’t mean you can’t do it next year. Different seasons of life call for different things.
- Plan Ahead– The most basic thing is – plan ahead. I have learned that if I sit down and plan out my traditions, it makes things a lot less stressful. That is why a few years ago, I started my own Christmas Planner- and this year, I am offering it for free, since I have made it pretty and printable! Plan out what you are going to do. Make shopping lists. I start planning some of this out at the beginning of November- because I can spread the cost out over a longer period of time, and wait for sales! This keeps me running on a more organized path, and this MultiTaskin Mom thrives off of being organized! Feel free to pop over to Worshipful Living and get yours today!
I hope that these five things will help you are you are thinking about having a meaningful Christmas- and keeping traditions, but not losing purpose! That is the main goal. When you take time to spend time with Jesus – and plan out meaningful, and fun, things for your family, you will keep Christmas the way it should be. Be sure to be on purpose, and be present, this Christmas season.
Worshiping With My Life,