What are your Christmas traditions?
If you couldn't tell by checking out the treats in the Catholic Courier's multimedia Advent calendar, one of my family's traditions is making Christmas ornaments. I've been doing this with my boys, Joey (11) and John (9), since they were little, and each year they look forward to taking their boxes of ornaments out of storage and adorning the tree with their past creations as well as their new ones.
I even get in on the fun. I have a box full of ornaments from my childhood, so we all share special Christmas memories about our decorations as we hang them on the tree.
This year, I decided to add a new tradition to the mix. I had been thinking about creches and how we don't have one, so when I found a children's Nativity scene craft to add to the Courier's Advent and Christmas board on Pinterest, I decided it would be something fun to make with my kids.
At the beginning of Advent, we printed out pictures of the Holy Family, the Three Kings and their camels, an angel, a shepherd and his sheep, a donkey, a palm tree and a stable. Each week we've been coloring and cutting out a few Nativity scene pieces, gluing them onto empty toilet paper rolls to make them 3-D and sturdy, and arranging them on our hearth. It's been fun watching the once-bare area fill up with a beautiful reminder of why we celebrate Advent and Christmas.
And before my husband, Joe, and I tuck the boys into bed on Christmas Eve, we'll add the final piece to the scene -- the baby Jesus in the manger.
I wish you all a Merry Christmas, and I hope you make wonderful memories with your families during this blessed season!