Because the Christmas season is filled with extended family we celebrate our family Christmas the week before Christmas.
We start with our Christmas eve.- singing together, reading of Jesus' birth in the book of Luke, praying together, then off to bed (so mommy and daddy can fill stockings, and make preparations for our Christmas day).
We wake to surprises under the tree, and open stockings.
We celebrate Jesus' birthday with a birthday breakfast party, just as we have celebrated each of our own birthdays through the year (complete with the table set, balloons, and streamers).
We read the story of Jesus' birth again, this time from the book of Matthew. We talk about Jesus being the gift we received that first Christmas. We speak of how God became man, was born here on earth, and how he longs to be born in us, live in us.
We open presents.
We go to church together.
Come home and play together.
We have a yummy "Linner" (lunch-dinner. This year we treated the kids to Tepanyaki. Entertainment, good food, and no cooking or clean up make for a very Merry Christmas).
Because our Christmas is a week early, we make it a goal to be done with all Christmas wrapping, crafting, buying, and preparing by our Christmas. This gives us a wonderful week off to enjoy the Christmas season, to enjoy advent and the coming of Jesus.
I never knew 9 years ago when we began this that it would become tradition. I LOVE that it has.
I confess moving Our Christmas was a little awkward those first couple years, But it has become so familiar, so who we are.
What Christmas traditions does your family have or have you created?