Sunday, May 26 2024 - 1:16 AM
children at Christmas
Photo by Dreamstime

Night of Traditions

Twinkle lights, fresh snowfalls, peppermint everything, and the smell of pine trees are a few of my favorite things associated with Christmas. Every year, I make holiday lists in preparation for a new season of traditional fun and merriment. I find pure joy in creating dinner menus, family activities, and overall set up for the holiday season.

When I think of past Christmases, I fondly reminisce about our family traditions. In my house, Christmas is enormous, and we all take part in setting up. My sister does all the baking, my brother sets up the porch lights, and I decorate the entire house. Putting up the tree is my favorite part; I love fluffing the branches and opening up old boxes of ornaments. Each ornament holds a special memory from past Christmases involving family and loved ones.

One of my favorite holiday traditions goes way back to when we were little. Every Christmas Eve, my mother bought each of us a new pair of pajamas. We’d sit by the fireplace and tear open our PJ presents with excitement. After changing into our cozy new outfits, we’d watch a family film with a bucket of popcorn and cups of hot cocoa. To end the night, we would all pile into the car with a thermos full of holiday cheer and drive around town to see the lights. These traditions created the happiest memories while reminding me of why I truly love Christmas.

As the years pass, sometimes our traditions will change. And if you’re anything like me, you feel a deep sadness when you’re inevitably presented with change. But, it’s ok to make new memories with those you love. In my family, we’ve created a few new ways to celebrate our favorite time of year. Instead of receiving pajamas, we draw names and find a particular book for the person whose name we drew. On Christmas Eve, we bring our wrapped books and present them to each person over snacks and hot cocoa. It’s a tradition we’ve created that brings a new element of excitement and love to our holiday season.

Traditions create a sense of closeness and belonging; they bring families together during a joyful time of year. While families may have varying traditions, these holiday celebrations nurture connections and create unity within a family. What better time is there than to create lasting holiday memories during the celebration of Christ’s birth?

“For to us a child is born, to us, a son is given . . . and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6, NIV).

While I love recreating traditional memories, my favorite tradition of all is celebrating Christ’s birth, the true meaning of Christmas. Even with twinkle lights, savory baking, and decorative ornaments, the re-telling of Jesus’ birth is the best tradition of all. Now more than ever, I’m thankful for the gift of Jesus and the celebration of family.

If you enjoyed this, you may like, Christmas Joy | Christmas Essays

Madeline Lowe writes from Indiana.

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About Madeleine Lowe

Madeleine Lowe

writes from the Midwest.

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