No one loves Christmas more than me. Seriously. Lights, good food, Mariah Carey’s “All I want for Christmas is You”on repeat, a tree, good food, parties, programs, did I mention the food? Oh, and Santa. Our family does Santa. But as my kids are getting older, things are getting more expensive on their “Christmas lists”. And I get that, they are hinging on the teen years, with one already there. But there has been a whole lot of “I want an iphone,” going on in my house and I’m having a hard time stomaching it. Since I grew up in the dark ages when we some how managed to have a super fun childhood without them, I’ve decided to revamp our family Christmas traditions this year. Well, really add a few. I want the focus taken off the ever growing Christmas list, and put on giving to others. After all, the only reason we have Christmas is because of that life giving gift of baby Jesus. I won’t be nixing Santa all together – he is a giver, after all. But this year, my 3 very blessed children who have a cozy house and plenty of food to eat are going to learn to give to others. How are they going to do it?
- I’m encouraging forcing my kids to buy presents for their siblings with their own money. These are the people we do life with every day. They see us at our best and our worst. And I want my kids to know what it feels like to give to the ones they love the most (even if they won’t admit it). I’m providing plenty of chores around the house to earn money so no one can say they don’t have any.
- Making gifts for the special friends in our lives. They are going to get to choose 3 families and we are going to make them baskets of Christmas cheer. They will be involved in the shopping, baking, and delivering. I want it to be from them – not just me!
- A family service project. I’m not sure what this is going to look like yet, but serving someone else together as a family is something I’ve wanted to do for a while.