12 Ways to Create Your Own Family Christmas Holiday Tradition - Part I

Monday, October 1, 2012
Family Christmas Holiday Tradition gives us freedom and guidance in a time that is otherwise hectic and stressful, and often unorganized. Tradition gives us a blueprint of how our family anticipates and loves the holiday season, what they expect, how they love to celebrate.
Tradition gives us the opportunity to lay out our Christmas holiday activities well in advance. We can prepare a plan of action, and organize our holiday events using a true and proven site map. That takes off stress from last minute activities, e.g., the frantic search for needed holiday decor, or the headache of coming up with the right holiday menu.
But what shall we do, if our family does not have a Christmas holiday tradition yet? Simply, we create our own tradition. Let's open the music box of our own childhood memories. What was it that made Christmas holidays so special? Was it the heavenly scent of cinnamon, orange and fir, all woven into the air in a potpourri of Christmas promise? Or do we remember mother's Christmas story at candlelight? Was it the holiday music that touched our heart? With our own Christmas holiday memories at heart, let's manifest our own family Christmas tradition! Here are twelve ways!
1. Build the excitement and joy up in your and your family's heart. Start by decorating your home to invite Christmas promise into your family's life. My mother used to decorate every picture in our home with a little fresh and wonderfully smelling fir twig. When we saw that mother was preparing for the holidays, excitement built up in our lives.
2. On December 1st, we brought in a fir wreath with four candles. Often three of those candles were purple, but one was pink. Living through the first two weeks, we children were eagerly looking forward to the third Sunday when the pink candle of Joy and anticipation was lit.
3. Of course, we had an Advent calendar and one of us was allowed to open a window each day. This meant that we children went to great length to ensure that we were good kids - cleaning up our rooms, removing the trash, washing the dishes, etc. - so every one of us got a turn to open a window.
4. It was custom that a Madonna statue was carried from house to house in memory of Maria's search for a place to give birth to her child. So when it was our turn to open our family door and heart to Maria, our mother would bathe the room in warm, gentle candle light. We sang the old carols and prayed. It was an honor to accommodate the statue for one night, and every family tried to prepare a special welcome.
5. On the 4th of December, mom would bring in St. Barbara twigs from the garden. These cherry twigs, now brown and barren, will open their blossoms in the holy night. We watched the Barbara twigs carefully every day with excitement and wonder. Because out of these seemingly dead brown twigs, soon little green leaves would develop in the warm family room.


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