Friday, December 07, 2007

Christmas Traditions

Christmas has never been as exciting as Chinese New Year. Chinese New Year is a time we have family reunions, but not Christmas. I didn't grow up a Christian. Not all my family members were Christians either. But eventually, we all converted. However, we all go to different churches.

I do want to make Christmas an important celebration. Being a first generation Christian, it is up to me to put the spirit into Christmas. I want my children to feel excited about Christmas. The only way this is going to happen is to instill family Christmas traditions. Here are some traditions to consider:

  • Special Christmas Eve Program
    What do you do after a scrumptious Christmas eve dinner? How about a session of singing Christmas carols and reading the Christmas story from the scriptures. If you have enough people for casting, why not reenact the Christmas story. Since we're so close to the end of the year, how about reviewing the year with each child and setting goals for the next year too.
  • Homemade Christmas cards
    Children love doing art and craft. So here's a way to kill two birds with one stone: make your own Christmas cards. You could make a pop-up card or stick an origami Christmas tree to a card. For really young children, it could be as simple as sticking cut up pictures from Christmas wrapping paper.
  • Rules on Gifts
    Children usually can't wait to open their presents. So I always allow them to open one on the eve and the rest on Christmas morning.
    If budget is tight, put a limit on the cost of the gifts. For example, gifts should not exceed RM20. Want to reduce the materialistic nature of gifts? How about a rule that there each person must give at least one gift that wasn't bought with money. It could be a "wash your car" coupon for dad, or a homemade photo frame for mom.
  • Christmas stockings
    Apart from presents under the Christmas tree, I also like to fill up my children's Christmas stockings. If you don't like the idea of candy and sweets, look for small items such as notebooks, pen, pencils, erasers, hair clips, stickers etc....
  • A new set of pyjamas
    I've heard of families who buy a new set of pyjamas for their kids during Christmas. I think this is a wonderful idea. We usually buy new shirts and dresses for special occasions. Pyjamas makes things a little different and unique.
  • Special Christmas table cloth
    A Christmas themed table cloth gives the home a festive feel. Just run to the cloth shop, look for a Chrismassy cloth, hem the sides and there you have it, a special Christmas table cloth.
  • Cookie Giveaway
    ake cookies together with your children. Pack them into little bags and tie them up with a ribbon. Distribute them to friends and neighbours. This is a great way to spread the Christmas cheer.

What are some of your Christmas traditions (if any)?


  1. Hi L--Christmas is one of those wonderful holidays that my little one enjoys. From getting the tree to decorating it.

    Great suggestions here, thank you for sharing them (smile)!

  2. I wish we could get real Christmas trees here. Hope you have a great Christmas.

  3. Hi Lian,

    Christmas is a wonderful festival and I love to celebrate this occasion with my kids and family, although I'm not a christian. Thanks for the tips.

  4. First time here. I'm not a Christian and like you said traditionally CNY is the occasion to look forward to rather than Christmas. I'm in Hong Kong, and with all the beautiful decorations up, it's hard not to get into the feel of Christmas. And for the last few years, I have make it a point to buy Christmas presents and such for my hubby's kids. To a certain extent, I guess I'm now celebrating the occasion as well!

  5. I mean my hubby's sisters' kids. Sorry...

  6. i think you have more list than me..I dont have such a detai like yours...

  7. Thanks for sharing, Lian.

    We also celebrate Christmas even though we are not Christians. I think it is important for the children to know each and every religions and culture so that they will learn to accept and respect other religions, cultures and traditions.

    Anyway, for us, each year we will pick up one new ornament to add onto our xmas tree. Then in the morning of Christmas eve, we will send some cereal boxes to the food shelter. This year I'm also planning to do something new. My idea is to have the children to pick up one iron-on fabric sticker each that represent them and stick them on our tree skirt.

  8. Jo-n:
    Have a great Christmas.

    tot's mom:
    I'm sure the kids love getting the presents. Very nice of you to buy for them.

    But at least you have some tradition right?

    What great things you are doing. Thanks for sharing.


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