It's been a wild, wild weekend (more on that later). So this morning I'd just like to share some tradition, sweet tradition, that's been a blessing in our home....
"Mom," Sam says. "It's time for the Christmas box!" His eyes are round. His smile is wide. It warms me to know that this child, stretching too fast out of little-boy, is small and sweet inside.
"You're right," I say. "Go get the box."
Sam shoots around the corner. I shout after him. "And get your brothers, too!"
The Christmas box is a simple, square box with a lid (ours is glittery gold). At Christmastime, it sits on the mantle. It's filled with twelve index cards, and written on each card is an activity for the day. We call ours the Twelve Days of Christmas (but there's grace in that, too - the days don't have to be consecutive and Mama chooses the card).
The activity ideas are simple. Some are for serving (take cookies or make cards for neighbors, help stamp Christmas cards). Some are for learning (use an old family recipe to bake a Christmas treat, read a beautiful Christmas story - Mary's First Christmas by Walter Wangerin Jr. is one of the most lovely I've found). Some are crafty (mold Baby Jesus, Mary, and Joesph from clay, loop a simple green and red paper chain for the tree, or assemble an easy treat for winter birds). Some are just plain fun (take a family car ride to see Christmas lights, turn lamps down and sing carols around twinkling tree, watch a classic Christmas movie, or listen to holiday music and dance).
Whatever the activity, there is focus. Time shared. Intentional togetherness in a season that can feel crazy-wild.
I now hear footfalls. And voices. A bevy of boys-of-all-ages pounds down the curved stairs..
It's time for the Christmas box and I'm excited, too.
There are memories and joy inside.
Just another tradition I'd like to pass along...there's a basket on our dining room table. It's filled with the Christmas cards we receive. At mealtime, one boy chooses a card. Then we pray, as a family, for the loved ones who sent the card.
Now, what sweet and simple Christmas traditions do you hold in your homes? It would be a blessing if you'd share...