Christmas time and traditions. They seem to go hand in hand. After Henry was born I had good intentions about establishing some Christmas traditions for our growing little family. But the funny thing about traditions is that the best ones aren’t forced. They seem to naturally happen and fall into place. Year after year. Then next thing you know, a few years down the road you have yourself a tradition. And to be honest it wasn’t until this year (Henry’s fourth Christmas, Charlie’s second) that I realized that we have indeed established some traditions of our own.
A few of our traditions are pretty simple like making Christmas cookies. Not just a few, but enough to share with neighbors, teachers, friends, hostess gifts for Christmas parties, you name it (while keeping a few for ourselves.) Each year Henry becomes more interested in the baking process. He loves to measure, pour and mix the ingredients. And this year I even let him lick the bowl. Yes, we like to live on the wild side.
Another tradition we have established is decorating a gingerbread house. Each year we dutifully head out to Costco to pick out our kit and then spend the next few days piecing it together and covering it with frosting and candy until I secretly toss out the candy in the middle of the night (because one little boy can only handle so much frosting, gumdrops, and candy canes in a day.) But the gingerbread house stays put at the center of our kitchen table until January.
And when November rolls around you can be certain I’m online searching for Christmas jammies for the boys. Henry started out in snowman pj’s his first Christmas, but it’s going to be Hanna Andersson stripy Christmas jammies for us here on out. (Yup, I’ve already stocked up for next year – big news – the boys are going to swap stripy colors!)
But it wasn’t until just recently, when looking through old pictures that I realized that we have yet another tradition. Each year Henry has been decked out in some sort of a Christmas sweater – sometimes it’s a simple winter sweater with little fanfare. Other years Henry has worn sweaters adorned with reindeer, candy canes, Santa Claus and Christmas trees. I’ll admit that I’m against tacky Christmas sweaters, but I love seeing my darling little boy dressed in a sweater with a giant snowflake on it. Fortunately for Charlie, there aren’t any elaborate hand-me-down Christmas sweaters for this year, so we settled for a navy and cream snowflake sweater to compliment Henry’s giant snowflake sweater. This one tradition I’m going to keep up. Until my boys catch on of course.
Before it was an official tradition. Henry’s first Christmas sweater (sitting on Santa’s lap), a classic cable-knit which Charlie has sported this year (on the right.)
Then we progressed (regressed?) into a whole new world of Christmas sweaters. And take a look at that Santa, he’s one of the main reasons we were happy to avoid visiting Santa at the mall this year. Jolly Old St. Nicholas he was not.
And no – these may not bet the most flattering pictures of my dear boys, but they do feature their darling Christmas sweaters nicely, don’t they?
I can’t wait to keep building upon our current traditions and to see what new traditions we will create (and even discover) during future Christmas seasons.