Saturday, I learned about a tradition that my sister-in-law does with her children. I was surprised that I wasn’t aware of it. I guess it’s because I’ve only been married to her brother for a mere 36 years. And she’s only been doing this tradition with her children for 24 years. (You might say I’m not the brightest bulb in the string of Christmas lights . . .)
Anyway, I thought it was a delightful tradition and immediately knew that I would write about it here.
Every Christmas, my sister-in-law lets her children pick out one ornament that is ‘their’ ornament. Then, when they get married, she gives them all of their ornaments so that they have a small collection of decorations for their Christmas tree.
I can just imagine the fun memories her children will have as a newlywed couple when they look at their own decorations on their own tree. Then when the newlywed couple has children, they can tell their children the stories surrounding the decorations.
Don’t you think that this would be an absolutely marvelous tradition that you can have with your grandchildren? There are several ways that you could do this:
- Take your grandchild shopping and let him pick out ‘his’ ornament. (You would need to tell the parents your plans so they can help your grandchild save them from year to year.)
- You can purchase an ornament and wrap it and then let your grandchild open the gift on Christmas Eve or at a special family party.
- Give the ornament as one of the gifts from you that your grandchild opens on Christmas Day.
- You and your grandchild can make a special ornament each year for your grandchild to keep.
- Purchase two ornaments — one for your grandchild to keep and then one you put on your tree so that grandchildren can see ‘their’ ornament when they come to your house for a visit. It could be a ‘memory’ tree.
You might also want to think of other traditions that you could have with your grandchildren. When our children were growing up, we made a gingerbread house at Christmas time. While that can be quite a bit of work, it is also lots of fun! (Click here for the gingerbread house pattern and directions that I use.)
My niece takes her family to an interfaith creche exhibit. My son takes his family on a Polar Express train ride. When our children were young, we would take them to see the light display in a local city park and other various light displays. Just recently, our little bedroom community has lights on the pond that are fun to see (and free!).
Now that our children are older, we take them to a Christmas melodrama and then out to supper afterward.
What are some traditions that you have done with your children? What are some that you are doing (or want to do) with your grandchildren?