My Christmas Traditions

A couple of weeks ago, my friend Beth mentioned in her interview that Christmas traditions help make the holidays special. On this Christmas Eve, I wanted to share a few of mine with you.

My favorite thing about Christmas is having our whole family together: Chris, all four children and me. With all of the kids college age or older and spread across the country, it is not only a wonderful for me to be with them, but it is wonderful for me to see them excited to be together.

When we come together, my family has some fun traditions. For example, we always make a cake to celebrate Jesus’ birthday. That’s something I have done with my kids since they were little. Every other year we go to Oregon, and then we all like to get out and enjoy the beautiful, snowy mountains with downhill or cross-country skiing. When we’re worn out with playing in the snow, we’ll come together to watch movies and football. (That’s something I hardly ever take the time to do: relax!)

Christmas is also a time spent celebrating our Lord’s birth with our extended family. When we go to Oregon, we visit my sister Becky, her husband, Kyle, and my niece and nephew, Tayler and Andrew, and we all attend a church service together. This time is precious to me because my sister’s family doesn’t regularly attend a church. We are praying for all of them to see that having a personal relationship with Christ is critical.

And finally, we celebrate Christmas each year in prayers and songs praising God for His ultimate gift and rejoicing in the birth of Jesus. My favorite Christmas songs are “Silent Night” and “Joy to the World.” These songs capture the essence of Christmas, and I sing them every year.

While I don’t have a specific Christmas prayer, we do always ask the kids to pray at our Christmas dinner by sharing what they are thankful for. This year, I am especially thankful that I have three children who know the Lord as their personal Savior, and I continue to pray that God will work in Gus’ heart.

That’s how my family celebrates. What about you? What are your Christmas traditions?