This season I felt so much better and organized. I shopped all the gifts earlier and we decided to keep gifts simple. We also trimmed down our gift list. Although it is unlikely for me, I made a rule to give gifts to those who stayed in our lives. I used to send gifts to people that I haven't spoken to in a year. My reasoning behind that is that Christmas is always going to be about giving without conditions. Whether they give you gifts in return or not, or whether I knew that you like me or not! (giggling here!). I read a meme on FB that says, stop giving gifts to people you don't even like. It's mean but there is a truth in that. Maybe the word "don't even like" is strong. I'm thinking more of people that are not really close or have stayed in touch in our lives. Let's just say, I was more intentional with our spending this year.
I am always interested in what other families do for their Christmas traditions. As for me, these are all important because I want our girls to grow up looking back on all the things we did during the holidays. They may not remember it all but I hope that when they have a family of their own..they will be able to do the things we did as a family. That they will value family time during Christmas time and memories more than the commercialism side of Christmas. I have gathered a few of the things we do during the holidays and some from other bloggers.
1. Family photo Christmas card.
I love sending them and love receiving them as well. Every year, I save a copy so I can bind them up together in the future.
2. Saving a wafer from your Christmas tree.
If you love getting a fresh tree every year, when you purchase your tree, have the cutter save a wood wafer for you. Write the year. As you collect them each year, you can put all the wafers in a glass jar to display.
3. Christmas cookies
Our girls love to make cut-out cookies. We make extra ones and we bring it to any Christmas parade that we plan on attending.
4. Letting your kids help you with your Christmas tree.
Now that our girls are much older, we had a great time telling them where and when we bought a certain ornament or if there is a story behind it.
5. Christmas PJ's
I just love kids in Christmas PJs. Matching of course but I have to mention that my husband and I do not wear matching ones. It is not for me, no thank you.
6. Go see your neighborhood town's Christmas light displays.
We absolutely look forward to this every year. Hot cocoa in tow, we visit nearby towns and neighborhoods to admire their Christmas displays.
7. Watch local church's Christmas shows and presentations.
During this season, local churches will host a Christmas program for free or for a very small fee.
8. Watch a theatrical Christmas show.
Last year, we watched the Nutcracker and we had a great time! The year before that we saw Disney on Ice.
9. Advent calendar or read through the book of Luke.
We bought an Advent calendar a w years ago and we read each little book each night starting on December 1. This year, we started to read the Bible, the book of Luke that has 24 chapters.
10. enjoy a dinner and tournament show. I'm talking Medieval Times here. I know, it's not really "Chrismassy" but we had been doing this for four years now! It became my pre-birthday celebration/before Christmas celebration tradition. I even took my mom there for her birthday. You can read last year's visit HERE. As always, they have the best customer service and staff. No grinch and grumpy peeps here. The show is interactive and I love how they give special attention to birthdays and anniversaries.
While we wait in the lobby.
Here's the Queen interaction with the audiences and doing special mentions.
Here's at the beginning of the show, it was hard to keep on taking photos because the intro itself is so exciting to watch. The background music will give you the "feels"
We were cheering for the yellow knight. I must say, all the knights are good looking and they do fit the bill! They all look like knights.
The food is also amazing. You will always have a left-over but this time around we made sure the kids didn't snack so they will have a good meal. One thing that I also admire are the servers! The whole meal thing is organized and NOT chaotic! They are accommodating to special dietary needs as well. If you are a vegetarian, they do have another menu for you!
Look at that!
We barely looked at each other here while we eat and watch the tournament.
I absolutely love that they are very accommodating with kids. Here's Lily, a Knight gave her a flower.
Will we keep on doing this every year? Certainly! It all started when we visited Medieval Times a few years ago during the Christmas season. We had a great time and we kept on coming back. Heres a list of Medieval Times locations. You can sign-up on their website to receive special discounts and promotions.