Holidays Vivian | 29 Jun 2011 12:13 pm

3 Christmas Traditions Perfect For Young Families

When parents begin having children, they become conscious of the need to create memorable holiday family traditions that their kids will look forward to year after year. Since Christmas lends itself to memory-making, here are 3 great yuletide traditions that are perfectly suited for young families that will stay relevant and enjoyable even when the children are teens.

– Christmas Campout

On the last full weekend before Christmas, how about setting aside an evening for an “Annual Christmas Campout?” This tradition takes a considerable amount of advanced planning, but the resulting fun is well worth the effort.

Starting at 8 pm, everyone gets to open a present: a brand new set of pajamas: even Mom and Dad! After changing into pajamas, the festivities begin. You can play games, sing songs, read stories, bake cookies, make a craft, or whatever you think is age-and interest-appropriate for your children. No TV is allowed! When the evening is done, spread sleeping bags out on the floor under the Christmas tree and sleep together. In the morning, how about some Christmas tree-shaped pancakes? As children get older, the activities can be modified: even teens love the challenge of having a family “stupid talent” show.

– 12 Days of Christmas

Beginning on December 12, start leaving gifts on a neighbor’s step anonymously. Your children will love being a “Secret Santa” to a neighbor widow or to someone who’s been through rough times lately: the kids will learn to think of others, which is what Christmas should be all about. The gifts should be simple: a plate of cookies, a 1/2 dozen red balloons, a little ornament, etc. Always include a “you are cared for” note and reference to the 12 Days of Christmas with the gift.

– Personalized Ornaments

The Christmas tree is always the center of the season: so why not make it a tree of memories? Online businesses sell ornaments in a wide array of designs that can be personalized with a family member’s name, a date, or anything else. Each child can start to collect his or her own set of ornaments commemorating Baby’s 1st Christmas, 1st Communion, 1st Day of School, Graduation, Hobbies, Sports, etc. Children will love unwrapping “their” ornaments each year and putting them on the tree: these ornaments create a sense of family unity and are a record of all of your wonderful Christmases together.

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