This time of year always makes me do a lot of thinking about traditions. I'm sure I'm not the only person who can say this. I've found, however, that having a child of my own makes it even more so. What traditions have my parents passed on to me? Which of these am I interested in passing on to my own family?
Foremost on my mind this year, however, is the issue of beginning traditions. Since Gilbert began this new job recently, he wanted to try to avoid taking vacation days so early. Because of this, we finagled things around and had our family visits early this year, so we're here, in Indiana, on Christmas Eve, just the three of us. I'm pretty excited about it, but I realized a couple of days ago that this means there will be no one to cook a Christmas meal for me! That means I am responsible for this aspect of the holiday!
So, as I thought about this daunting task and about family traditions, I decided that maybe our family tradition can be that we go to a restaurant for Christmas dinner. The more thought I put into this, though, the more I realized that this tradition would make me look lazy, and the thought of that makes me crazy, so I decided against starting this tradition. Then I thought that our tradition could be that we have something non-traditional for Christmas dinner. After much contemplation, I've decided to cook breakfast for Christmas dinner. The good news is that at this point, there is no one to be concerned with but Gilbert and myself, and since Gilbert's good with it, the plan stands--at least for this year.
Another tradition I thought about was preparing for Santa. I realize that Cole doesn't understand the whole Santa thing yet, but I decided that now's as good a time as any to begin this tradition. I've been thinking about this one for a few weeks, and had decided that baking cookies together to put out for Santa would be a fun tradition to start, and since Cole loves to help in the kitchen (yes, already), I thought we could bake sugar cookies and decorate them together.
We had dinner on Saturday night at our friend Mindy's house, and upon leaving she presented us with "some goodies." Much to my excitement (and without Mindy having any idea about my plan), the "goodies" were sugar cookie mix, a cookie cutter, a tub of butter cream icing, four tubes of writing icing, and a great hand-painted star plate. Perfect! This convinced me further that I should make an attempt to begin what I hope will be a tradition in our family as long as my children will continue it.
The following pictures show the result of our work:
When I think about the traditions that my family has always had, I realize that most of them were probably not started on purpose. They're just something we always did so they became traditions. I think this makes them even more special. However, I want to make sure that there are things that Cole will be able to look back on and say, "We always did that at Christmas time." I guess I want to be sure that he has warm feelings about his childhood Christmases like I have about mine.
Merry Christmas! I pray that you all will be blessed in the coming days just as I have been--with family, with friends (old and new), and with special traditions of your own.