January 3, 2012

Thoughts on Christmas...better late than never!

I can't help but wonder about the different scenarios and situations we will encounter as Twodles and future children grow older.  With all the hub-ub of gift purchasing, decorating the apartment, Christmas parties and the like, I kept thinking of the idea of Santa.  I think its fun and kids enjoy Santa, but what I really want my children to know about Christmas is much greater than all of that!

I tend to have a very black and white way of thinking...no grey.  Part of me just wants to lay it out from the get go, but how can I take the fun and joy out of something even I experienced as a child, just to get a very important point across.  I want my children to know about Jesus Christ.  I want them to know about His birth, but more importantly the best gift that was ever given...the gift of the Saviors Atonement.

So what have you done to help your children understand what Christmas is really about and still enjoy the fun side too?  What are your traditions?


  1. When Isaac was just getting old enough to understand Santa it felt a little weird to me to go along with it all. As he got older and the other kids get older I feel happy with the way we approach it all. We def have Christ as the center of our Christmas. Each of our 12 days of Christmas activities are Christ centered. We tell the story of Christmas over and over, focusing on different characters of the story. Christ, Mary, Heavenly father, the wise men, etc. We also do the Santa thing and I love it. We try and teach the kids how wonderful the birth and life of our Savior is/was and Christmas is a celebration of it! We give gifts to others to celebrate Christ's birth. Santa comes and brings them presents also to celebrate Christ's birth. As we talk about Christ's life and His sacrifices and how He always just gave, gave gave, even on HIS birthday he gives US presents to celebrate. Christmas Eve we do a little devotional make sure to constantly remind the kids why we are giving gifts and why we receive them. Anyways, that is our approach so far and we hope to make it more meaningful with each year.

  2. I think it is important to do both. Definitely downplay the whole Santa thing so that there is plenty of room to hype up the true meaning of Christmas. But culturally it is fun to do all of the other things. In our house we "pretend" that Santa comes and brings us toys. This was the first year that Alice really got what it was all about. We watched Christmas movies all month, and so she just kind of put the Santa thing together on her own. We didn't even say much about it. Christmas morning she saw her kitchen and said, "Santa came!" We were like, "Dang, we wanted credit for that." But it was cute. We just tried to make sure we talked about Jesus and his birth and the real reason we have Christmas, and the reason we have gifts is because the Wise men brought Jesus gifts on his birthday and all of that. You know it all. But those are some of the parts that we emphasized this year. I am all about tradition, too, and doing the fun more meaningless things, as well. Like going to see Santa and looking at Christmas lights and having a tree and those things. I think it should all be memorable and fun but have the Spirit of Christ surround it all. I just think about my parents (of course) and how we did plenty of fun traditional things but I was still able to understand what Christmas is all about, even as a young child. It can be very testimony building, but it should also be about having a good time and closeness with your family. I definitely want to do more to emphasize the true meaning as they get older. Service projects, acting out the nativity scene, and more talk about the Savior and his birth. But I think this year went pretty well overall.

  3. Thanks for the comments ladies. I was so wishing I got a lot more feedback on this, since I really had been thinking about it A LOT!