This is Day 7 of my FREE 21 Day Writing Challenge. It isn’t too late to Join the Challenge! I know this post is 2 days late. Sometimes the best laid plans are just laid down and walked away from. The post isn’t as put together as I would like, but that is part of this challenge is to put a time limit and just write.
When there is a holiday coming up we see all the blog posts and Pinterest walls start to fill up with traditions to incorporate for that holiday. I get excited about ways my kids can get involved in different holiday traditions, and we spend time thinking through how we can make our own family traditions in Lebanon or, if a holiday is shared between our two cultures, adopt a new tradition. I gather these ideas, and never throw one out.
One of the benefits of my never throwing out an idea is that I can keep a wide variety of opinions in my head. This allows me to see the lack of intentionality when making a tradition. If you ask people what decorations are essential to Christmas, many people will say a Christmas tree. Within some people who are in the know about the origin of the Christmas tree, you will have the follow up question, “So you celebrate Saturnalia?” Yes, the use of a Christmas tree stems from a pagan culture, and most of us don’t even think about it. So, on Pinterest boards and blog posts I will see people debate over whether or not we should change the tradition.
As with everything I think that there is a great deal to be said for knowing the history of things, but also to having intentionality. We should not be making our parenting choices willy nilly. Nor should we be throwing judgments at other people. We can stand back and say, this Christmas tree thing sure does mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people. We don’t have time travelers from the time of Saturnalia being the biggest holiday here to be offended by our gross commercialization of their holiday, so we need to make decisions for our own families with love and grace.
We decided early on that Santa and the Easter Bunny were just not tall tales we were going to focus on sharing with our kids. Davy is so emotionally invested in people that we knew it would be tragic for him to get into Santa, and then the next year for Santa to be a different person whose lap he sat on. He would notice. We don’t deny the existence of Santa, but share that he is a story and lots of people like to dress up as Santa in order to remind us of the story. I like to think my son is dressed like Jesus to remind us of the story there as well. There are stories that should be shared, and there being a man who wanted to give poor children gifts is an inspiration to us all. The desire to give our families and friends gifts is a good desire. And for many parents who live consistent lives in the same home and can keep the illusion of Santa truly coming to their house, good for them. It doesn’t work for us, but we are holding onto all the ideas for traditions with or without Santa anyway.
This post is one of a series meant to kickstart a writing habit. I created exclusive prompts which are emailed to those of us signed up for my FREE 21 Day Writing Challenge. I am posting my responses each day, and I invite you to join me in this writing journey by CLICKING HERE! The only way to receive the prompts is to sign up for the Challenge. The emails will include the prompt for the day as well as directions to kickstart your writing habit for any combination of the following:
Christmas/New Year Letter or Correspondence