"Common Ground": my little corner of the blogosphere where I talk (a lot-wink) about the things that matter most to me: My relationship with my Lord & Savior, Jesus Christ, homeschooling, adoption, homemaking, parenting, "spousing." (yeah, yeah....I know that's not a word.....I made it up-it’s my blog-I can do things like that! Ha!)

Since my life isn’t all that different from yours, hopefully we can find some COMMON GROUND & learn from each other. Please share your thoughts!

Through the Lords’s mercies we are not consumed, Because His compassions fail not.

They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness!
Lam. 3: 22 & 23

Click on pics to see us up close & personal! :)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

"Tradition......Tradition!" (Ok....I know it's corny, but I couldn't help a little nod to the "Fiddler on the Roof!")

Tradition: the handing down of beliefs, customs, information from generation to generation.

When I overhear Ana talking with her friends, & saying, “We always eat “Huevos Rancheros” for supper on Christmas Eve,” or when she tells Ruth, “On Christmas Eve, we get to open one present,” I wonder why kids feel the need to review these traditions as they draw near.

Why is it so important that these things get handed down, especially since I don’t do things quite the same way as we did in our family growing up?

Well, Ana is communicating to others that she is connected to her family. Connectedness is so important for kids.

I also think it is comforting to kids to have traditions that repeat-every year. Makes for predictability & stability in their lives.

Traditions also impart a sense of importance & significance to time spent together doing things like our yearly “Christmas Light Drive.” (or any number of various other things you do as a family each December.)

Care to share some other reasons you think traditions are important?


Now, here are a few of the things we like to do-perhaps you can incorporate one or two of these ideas (if you need any more!)

~A special Christmas Eve dinner. (Mentioned above)

~A real tree (this is one tradition Dave wouldn’t mind giving up!)

~Ham for lunch on Christmas Day.

~Going to the “Zoo Lights” with our friends.

~“Christmas Lights Drive”

~Watching the kiddos perform in the Sunday School Christmas Program.

~& perhaps everyone’s favorite at our house is the “Christmas Scrapbook.”

Here is what goes in it each year:

~Pictures from Christmas & the rest of the Holidays
~A list of the major gifts everyone got.
~A brief run-down of the Christmas Holidays, so there are no questions like, “What year was it that we went up to Minnesota to be with Brian & Rebekah?” We can just run to the book & check!
~Finally, every year, I write a short letter to each person spending Christmas with us & thank them for specific things I enjoy about them.

2006, Guatemala City


Here is the beginning of Natty’s letter from last year-his first Christmas home from Guatemala. These letters hang on the tree & are read after all the presents are opened.

I have found the kids love to go through this scrapbook throughout the year.

One thing I need to get better at, though, is not waiting until 10pm, Christmas Eve night to write the letters! Ha! I have a bit of a head start on it this year, though!

Of course, we also love to read the Christmas Story together & try to remember througout the season, that JESUS IS THE REASON FOR THE SEASON!

If it wasn’t illegal in our county, it would be fun to set off fireworks at midnight on Christmas Eve, like they do in Guatemala. Have any of you other parents with children adopted from GT found any traditions you have incorporated into your holiday celebrations?

I also need to re-think some of the traditions we had growing up, & probably pick my dear mother-in-law’s brain to incorporate some traditions from our childhoods.

Can’t wait to read about everyone else’s traditions!


Gardenia said...

you have wonderful traditions. love the scrapbook!

vaneblu said...

Ohh that Christmas scrapbook is really special, I might add it to my own traditions :)

nora said...

The scrapbook idea sounds fantastic! Good for you!

Anne said...

Great post Kim. And you are so right about kids needing to feel connected. I love you idea about the Christmas Scrapbook, I may have to steal (I mean borrow that idea).

I deleted my original blog by accident but have a new one started.


Misty McKibben-Sanders said...

Kim- About the stockings...yes and no about ordering online! Mostly if I have friends who go on mission trips, they bring back stuff to sell, or pick up items I specifically want. I have two friends there right now, but I already had everything for the stocking from a friend who went this summer, however...I am more than sure I will buy more! I will send you the link to one of the gals that is over there right now, she lists stuff on her blog to sell when she returns. So when she sets that up, I'll be sure to pass it along! Going to add you to my list of favorites also!!! Thanks....love your blog...and have a blessed Holiday Season!

Carrie said...

I have wanted to start a Christmas scrapbook for years now!

Looks like you guys have lots of special traditions ~ Isn't that what makes being in a family so special?!?! God's design is perfect! ;)

Melinda said...

Love the scrapbook tradition!! To answer your question, we only give Crista 2 gifts on the day we put up our tree...its always the same, a new ornament and Christmas jammies. After that, she has to wait until Christmas morning!!

Brad said...

Eventually, you are going to have to let Dear Hubby into the picture.

"Yule brinner" = super clever.

One Busy Momma said...

Love the scrapbook and letters!!!
I write letter to each of my kids on their birthday...but they cant read them till they are all grown up!
As for incorporating Guatemalan traditions, we do tamales on Christmas eve... we go to a posada...and we will celebrate Our Lady of Guadalupe next week (we are Catholic)... we also go to Christmas eve mass... (I'd go to traditional, midnight high mass if I could)

Hannah said...

I agree with you. Traditions are important to kids. In fact, of all our traditions but one were brought on the the kids. We'd do something one time and Dmitry would beg to do it every year then after. It seems to bring him comfort and makes him happy.

We do a big family dinner on Christmas Eve. It is my favorite night of year with all my brothers and their families.

Love your scrapbook idea!!

Cedar Hill Chronicles said...

Love your scrapbook - what a delightful book of memories for the kids as they grow up.

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