As most of you know, I am a sucker for traditions, so Christmas is no exception. I especially love starting new traditions and seeing them through. So when Vernon and I got married we had so much fun thinking of what we wanted our new family traditions to be! Some are old ones with a twist, some out of our own little minds and still others are spin-offs of things we've heard others do. (2 years ago i blogged on this same thing!)
So lets all share what our traditions are and maybe it will encourage creativity in each other!!!!
Here are some of ours. (and some pictures for visual) I tried to keep them simple so we can do them if we are in the States or in Sudan.
*The first year we were married I made ornaments that have the names of Jesus on them. We have a separate tree that we call The Jesus Tree. Each day, starting on December 1st, we pull an ornament out of the advent box and read the corresponding scripture, talk about Jesus and hang the ornament. Also, as people send Christmas Cards, we hang their pictures on the tree and pray for them after we read the scripture and hanging the ornament.
*On December 1st each family member gets a "shepherd's pouch." (this idea came from Noel Piper's book Treasuring God in our Traditions, its an amazing book I revisit each year) It is just a little piece of fabric I have sown into a little coin purse. All month each person put money in it. On Christmas Eve, everyone lays them at The Jesus Tree. In the morning when the children wake, they can come and see what the money has turned into. ( we calculate a head of time what we will give as a family to random places and ministries around the world, most often we buy something from the World Vision Catalog, like a goat to feed a family) This takes the focus off of getting and onto giving. We talk about where the money went, by using the map and globe and pictures. Last year, our money went to Sudan, because we were there, but we hope to spread it out all over so that our children will know much more of the world than the US and Sudan.
*We have Advent Candles. This is something I especially love. It is a very old church ritual to bring about anticipation of the coming King. Each week we light a candle and read some liturgy. It builds the anticipation as the children await for the "Jesus Candle" to be lit. (in the past we have kept the Jesus Candle in a specific place and lit as much as possible. Then during lent bring special attention to it so that the Thursday before Easter is the last day they see it lit until Easter morning)
here are some random pics of some things i through together this year from decor....just dorky fun stuff from around the house to add to the cheer...
Soooo.....please oh please, do share your traditions! What do you do for Christmas?