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Beginning New Christmas Traditions

This Christmas is the first Christmas we are able to celebrate with a child who is old enough to understand the basic concepts of Christmas. Last year all she managed to understand was “Santa” and “Presents” despite our attempts to tell her about the real meaning of Christmas.

I recently posted on Life on a Hill about teaching kids what Christmas really means where I had some ideas about what I would like our Christmas traditions to look like. This year we have decided to make a more deliberate effort to form our own family Christmas traditions.

As our extended family don’t live locally, this will be the first year since the kids were born that we are going to have Christmas in our own home as Tim will be working over Christmas  (preaching at the Christmas services). This means that we can try out new ways to share Christmas with our family and create our own traditions.

To mark the beginning of our Christmas celebrations, we decided that the first Saturday of December would be filled with decorating the house and beginning our talks with the kids about the meaning of Christmas.

For something special we started the day with yummy croissants and read the Christmas story from the kid’s Bible. We then got ready and took a trip to the local farmer’s market to purchase important food supplies for the day (fresh bread and a massive bag of cherries). We couldn’t resist and began eating the bread and cherries in the car on the way to our next stop.

The next stop was the Christmas tree farm. As both Tim and I grew up in families which had real Christmas trees we decided to include this tradition in our family. I found a farm just outside Canberra Christmas Tree Keng where you can choose and cut your own tree. The kids were excited to see so many Christmas trees and they helped us pick the perfect tree. With a saw they provided we (Tim) chopped down this tree and popped in the the trailer to take home. The lovely people at the farm gave us lollypops for the kids and lollies for us (that worked nicely in keeping the kiddies quiet on the way home).
Our tree!
Our tree with us girls and my bump
Emily helps with the sawing
Lolly pop and a free fly which Claire couldn’t shake
When we arrived home we put some Christmas music on and reenacted the Christmas story with the help of the Fisher Price Nativity play set. This is such a great toy as the kids can play with it without breaking it, while learning the story of Jesus’ birth. 

Reenacting the Christmas story

After some lunch and putting our littlest person into bed we started to decorate our gingerbread house. It was an interesting experience trying to balance the creative talents of two adults with the creative talents of an almost three year old….but we were happy with the result. Even little Claire “helped” when she woke up (mainly by stuffing her face with lollies and pulling lollies back off the house).
The constructions begins
Claire eats some lollies
I get creative
Claire eats some lollies
I eat some lollies
Finished house

When the time came to decorate the tree the girls were very excited. I think they just thought we would have a naked tree and were happy with that idea. We went for a silver and red theme and the kids get excited every night when the lights go on.

For the rest of the day the girls enjoyed watching the Colin Buchanan DVD, King of Christmas. They watched it over and over and over again. We just relaxed and enjoyed our new Christmas traditions coming to life. We can’t wait to continue to see our kids learn more over the coming weeks and to show them how important the birth of this little baby born over 2000 years ago is to us.

What are your Christmas traditions? Are you planning to create new ones this year?

Linking up with Jess from Diary of a SAHM for IBOT for the first time!

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  1. What lovely Christmas traditions you started for your family! Emily looks so precious in the second pic with cherry juice all over her face heh :)

    • Mummys Undeserved says:

      You should see the series of photos I took of her in black and white with the cherry juice remaining red. She looks like a vampire! Might have to put them up for a wordless wednesday

  2. That Christmas Nativity Set looks fantastic!!! I think I might have to go looking in the shops! I want to teach my kids that Christmas isn't just about Santa – but like you say, it can be hard explaining Jesus' birth and importance to a three year old – especially when we don't attend church regularly.
    I might have to get a decent Christmas story book as well!

    • Mummys Undeserved says:

      It is so good. I got it from Kmart for very cheap. It was $39 which is really good value as it has heaps of little people and animals, a stable and four fence pieces. Yes it is hard to explain it but I have actually been surprised at how much she is picking up this year. Books are good as they tend to memorise stories that they read heaps (that is what I am finding with Em).

  3. I love the idea of a 'real' Christmas tree. These are great traditions Lisa. And it looks like you had a great day.

  4. Mummys Undeserved says:

    Thanks Deb. We had lots of fun and I love my tree. It smells so good.

  5. You're setting up some love traditions there! Our traditions change a bit from year to year and this year we've done away with one of our main traditions (a Christmas calendar – not the waxy chocolate one's from the supermarket, but a proper one with little presents and a puzzle that gets put together throughout December) for the first time in 12 years. Oddly enough, the kids don't seem to have noticed. We've never had a real tree because I'm from Scandinavia and Aussie tree aren't the same, but I'm thinking of introducing a real tree next year. This year I also want to bake and build our own gingerbread house. So, I guess our traditions are in a state of flux at the moment while we find what fits properly from both sides of the family and two culturally different backgrounds.

  6. Oh that sounds like such a fun day! We are pretty slack compared to you!
    I love the idea of a fresh Christmas tree, as much because you don't have to worry about storing it all the year long!

    • Mummys Undeserved says:

      Haha Jess I am sure you are not slack. This is the first year we have done anything like this. Hopefully we can do it most years but in reality these things might be spread out over the Christmas season.

  7. What a lovely start to the festive season. I too love the idea of a real tree, but I am tipping there are not too many of them round here

  8. I was going to ask where you got it, I love Little People for toddlers – so indestructable! Did you get it this year?

    • Mummys Undeserved says:

      Yes Erin I got it a couple of weeks ago. I am sure there are lots around at this time of year. I love Little People too they are chewable which is important in our household :)

  9. I only remember one Christmas not at our own place – welcome to the life of ministers kids :)

    • Mummys Undeserved says:

      Yes Erin so far we have been able to go alternate years with Christmas but with starting a new congregation in another location in 2013 it may be the same for us from now on

  10. Sounds like you guys are forming great traditions. Love the idea of a real tree. I think I might have to investigate that for next year.

  11. Looks like you had a lovely day Lisa! Just wondered what Kids Bible you use? We need an updated version here – our eldest is about to turn 4 and the 'mostly picture' one we have i just not cutting it anymore! Bec

    • Mummys Undeserved says:

      Bec we use a couple. We have The Beginners Bible (Candle Books) and My First Bible in Pictures (Kenneth N. Taylor -Bible Society). They are both for younger readers but the My First Bible is good as it has a page of text (3-4 sentences) then a question on the passage. Please email me if you want to know more details

  12. All looks wonderful Lisa. Emily and Claire are very lucky little girls to have you and Tim as parents.

  13. You did a wonderful job with your gingerbread house. It sounds as though you have it all sorted – lots of wonderful traditions for the girls to look forward to for many years to come.

    • Mummys Undeserved says:

      Thanks Jayne, it was fun and the girls loved it. I can't wait for the next couple of weeks. It will be busy but so much fun.

  14. Mummys Undeserved says:

    You should! They can be messy and more expensive if you do it every year but I think it is worth it. And if you believe the little brochure they gave me a real tree is more environmentally friendly.

  15. Your family is just beautiful and I love the traditions you have started with them. xx

  16. Great thank you :)

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