Old and New Traditions

We made it through Christmas!

Every year it comes faster and faster. It builds to this glorious day of gluttony and gifts and then it's all over. Just. like. that.

I think a lot of holiday stress actually lies in keeping up with traditions, or creating new traditions, or spending time thinking about how traditions are so attractive and magical as an idea but carrying them out...all of them...can be a daunting task.

I definitely struggle with this whole incorporating the old with the new. I want to pass on traditions to my children that I remember when I was a kid. Like we always hung stocking wherever (we never really had a fireplace) and the stockings would magically appear, courtesy of Santa, at the foot of our bed full of gifts. We'd open those first.

Or every Christmas breakfast always had a place for Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls. It was just our thing.

But then you hear about other families and their traditions and you're like - Hey, that sounds cool! Maybe we could do that!

And we all know what Pinterest can do with our idle time. All of the sudden, if we don't incorporate glitter-oatmeal reindeer food, which we've never ever done before, into our Christmas traditions IT JUST WON'T BE CHRISTMAS!

Cut to me, outside, in front of my house, with my three year old daughter at nine o'clock at night sprinkling glitter-oatmeal reindeer food across the gravel on Christmas Eve.

Yes, I'm a sucker for new traditions.
But in order not to go completely bat crap crazy, I have to let some things go. Like this year we didn't get to see the light festival our city has every year. I didn't do a lot of gift baking. Everyone seems to get baked goods for the holidays and half of it ends up in the garbage. Don't lie. You know it does.

We also didn't get to see any snow. A local mall here has a snowfall event through December where they bring in real snow. Stop laughing! This is what we have to do to see snow in southern Arizona.

Since I've had my own Christmas tree I always decorated it with ornaments that I've had since I was little. They were barely hanging on! But last year, after years of secretly wanting a white tree, I took the plunge! Along with the white tree, I ditched about three quarters of my old ornaments. I didn't throw them away. But it was time for a change.

I had to let some traditions go in order to add new ones.

What new tradition did you begin? What did you ditch?


  1. We are in Southern California and went to Sea World and Legoland to let our son play in the snow for the first time. I think that will be a tradition we will keep. Didn't do the reindeer food since this is the first Christmas he started to "get" the whole concept of Santa. And I too, skipped the holiday baking and made jelly throughout the year as the fruit became ripe and gave that instead. Rave review from neighbors and friends! and far less mess and stress in December for me.

    1. That's awesome! We did the same thing with pickles! We gave jars of homemade pickles and zucchini bread. People seemed a lot more excited about that, much like your neighbors!

  2. I really enjoyed this Christmas in particular because I recieved a handful of handmade gifts. We all know I usually make ceramic gifts, baked gifts or in recent years painted canvas gifts. So it was nice to get something handmade. I especially like the pendant you had made for me, "John 3:16" and the felted slippers. Shauna, you always give thoughtful gifts and what I like is that they weren't elaborate or expensive. They were from the heart. I think I would like to make it a tradition that we exchange at least one gift that is handmade, preferably made in America, each Christmas. Even Manny got into the handmade gift giving with his personalized key holders. It's fun!

    1. So you like the wisk? I think that's a great idea, Mom. Everyone did something handmade and it worked out well. So would your tradition be to NOT do something handmade since you've given handmade items every Christmas since I was born??? Glad you like your gifts! Love u!


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