Christmas Traditions

We’ve had a fun month and in particular a fun week of doing some old and new things to prepare for Christmas.

We started out by reading Ann Voskamp’s Jesse Tree devotional.  This is our second year reading this wonderful collection.  It is free to download on her website.

Another favorite is Max Lucado’s One Incredible Moment.  A collection of stories from a variety of his books, we read one a day throughout December.  It’s a wonderful way to reflect on the incredible gift of Jesus.

This Christmas season, Matt told me I could spend some money updating our Christmas decorations.  I didn’t actually end up spending too much, but it did get my wheels turning and help me to look at our decorations to see what could be updated or changed or redone.  It’s been fun!  We did some different/new things this year that I’ve really liked, most of them involving cardstock, pictures, ornaments, and ribbon.

First, inspired by a photo posted by my friend Kristen last Christmas, we tied ornaments to ribbon and hung them from the curtain rods in all of the front windows.  I haven’t been able to get a very good picture, but they look so lovely, if I may say so myself.  😉

December 18, 2011  One of my favorite Christmas decorations - ornaments hanging in the front windows - inspired by a friend.  Not a great representation; will have to try to get a better angle another time.

I also decided to try something new with Christmas cards this year.  We have two doorways that I drape garlands over.  This year I bought black cardstock and some pretty ribbon.  I pulled out the old decorative scrapbooking scissors and as Christmas pictures came in, I would adhere the pictures to the card stock, cut a pretty edge, put ribbon on the back, and hang it from the garland.  It’s fun to see our friends and family’s smiling faces as we enter our home.

December 14, 2011  How we displayed our Christmas cards this year.

December 14, 2011  Technically not taken on the 14th, but a better angle on the same thing.

For gift tags this year I decided to print a bunch of pictures from the past year.  Some of our girls don’t like to know who is getting what so I had to get creative.  So, once again taking black cardstock, decorative scissors, and ribbon, on one side of the card stock I put a picture of who the gift was to, on the other side I put a group or family picture.  I taped them by the ribbon to the box with the individual picture facing down.  I only did this on our gifts to the girls, so there wasn’t any need to indicate who they were from.  It’s so fun to see all their lovely faces on the packages under our tree.

December 17, 2011  Photos as gift tags on Christmas presents.

One more decorating thing, I think…  We have a beautiful old fireplace in our dining room, but it doesn’t work nor does it have a cover to hide the gas elements or whatever they’re called.  For years I’ve been trying to figure out a way to make that part of it more attractive.  Well, this year I decided to carry the ornament idea into the dining room.  I hung ornaments from the same ribbon as I used in the windows, from the inside of the fireplace.  They look lovely!  Now I’ll have to figure out what to put there once the decorations come down!  

We’ve also watched some of our favorite movies – The Polar Express, Miracle on 34th Street (the old version), and Elf.  There are still a few I would like to watch.  They include How the Grinch Stole Christmas (maybe I’ll take this one for the kids to watch tomorrow night at my parents’), The Nativity (planned for Christmas Eve sometime), The Christmas Story (on Christmas Day since it usually runs all day long).  The only one I’m still trying to fit in is Christmas Vacation.  We won’t let the girls watch that one yet, so maybe late one night this weekend.

We also got a little crafty this season (thank you, Pinterest).  Grace is working on a couple of different things on her own, but yesterday everyone sat down together and painted ornaments.  So easy, so fun, and so beautiful! 

And let’s not forget all of the food we’ve made this month.  Craziness!

Oh, it’s been a fun season of doing something different!  I’m looking forward to this weekend and resting, relaxing, and celebrating His coming with those we love most.

For His Glory ~

~ Sara

2 thoughts on “Christmas Traditions

  1. Sara, your home looks beautiful! We’ve had a lot of fun doing some of those same things this month. We’ve read a Christmas/Winter story every night, tons of baking and some of the same movies. We got a new advent wreath last week from my parents, but have been reading the devotional w/o the candles! I think we will light it on Christmas. I have the Nativity Story checked out from the library. If you don’t have a copy, I could drop it by! Merry Christmas to you and yours! Just think, next Christmas – you’ll have 5 girls – yipee!!

  2. Great ideas sara! We also tried many new things with the kids this year. It is the first year since my Eliana was born, 9 years ago, that we will actually be here for Christmas! I was excited to have a full season just for us. My parents have an old fireplace. They have a pretty candleabrum with short pillar candles on it. I can’t quite tell if something like tha would work with yours or not. Merry Christmas!

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