Season's Readings

Owen's gift to Jane from his Santa Shoppe:
A New Kid in Town bib
Crocheted Christmas dress by me!
Jane's first Christmas was a smashing success, of course. We made it to Oklahoma and back with beautiful driving weather on both of our travel days. Spending time with my family and getting to see many friends at Jane's baby shower were really the best parts of the trip. Having a happy baby 99% of the time was pretty swell too!

The temperature difference from Oklahoma to Louisiana is extreme. I enjoy bundling myself up and feeling the nip of cold air on my face, but wrangling a baby into a car seat in the freezing cold is not my idea of fun.

If we lived somewhere colder it definitely would have made more sense to get a infant car seat to start, since you can load the baby into it inside the house, wrap blankets over her and then click into the base. (The seat we have is a convertible one -- works from birth to 70 lbs.)

I tried to start traditions of our own this year -- the most ambitious being a Christmas book each night in December leading up to Christmas to serve as an Advent calendar.

We did read The Night Before Christmas
on Christmas Eve
Originally I was going to wrap 25 children's books, but then I realized that was ridiculous, as I'd be wrapping and opening them myself. So I just went with the pile of books and tested them out that way.

My mom gave me a whole slew of books that we'd had as kids, so it was fun to read those especially. I remember the big basket of Christmas books and being excited when they came down each December from wherever they lived the rest of the year.

Before I pack away our Christmas stuff I will be wrapping up 25 (or more?) books in tissue paper, which is easier for little hands to rip into -- next Christmas Jane will most certainly be able to do that -- and tissue paper eliminates the possibility of paper cuts. (I learn all kinds of things reading the internet!)

So this year I read a children's Christmas book almost every day. But as we were getting into and out of a routine/schedule/whatever I didn't always remember. Next year I hope it will be exciting for Jane and an easy part of our routine to implement.

Also, I read something on my pastor's blog about Christmas being the beginning rather than the end. And what would our culture be like if we celebrated most the 12 days between Christmas and Epiphany? So perhaps I should extend my book reading beyond the 25th of December? I have saved the Wise Men books that we have to read on January 6.

I definitely want Jane's experience of Christmas seasons to be full of wonder and joy without the trappings of gimme-gimme-gimme materialism and Santa Claus. I know that will be tough in our culture, even in our church culture, but it's something to strive for.

Hopefully in future years we will add traditions as she develops -- more crafts, baking cookies, etc. But I never want to forget THIS Christmas, especially seeing Jane getting to know my Gran -- they love each other so much. And I love THEM so much that it made my heart happy. I only wish we lived closer together so I could have that heart happiness more than once or twice a year.

Disclosure: Amazon affiliate link used for car seat.


Anonymous said...

Very well written Mari, I feel we enjoyed it with all of your family through your pictures. Thanks for sharing, love you all, Dale.

Sydney said...

I love the picture of Jane reading. She is so smart! And pretty too.

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