This has been a special Christmas for us: It was the first in our new house, and it was Addi’s first! V had some new traditions, too.
Our Christmas recap:
We chose to stay in Chicago for Christmas this year vs. traveling to Arizona or Kentucky. We wanted to continue our own tradition of having Christmas morning breakfast and then opening gifts together. Our tree had lots of gifts that were sent to us by our family members, and we let the girls open a couple of them on Christmas Eve and the rest on Christmas Day.
The weekend before Christmas we had a mini Cookie Day, a tradition for the Flora family in Kentucky. We missed it this year because traveling to Louisville was challenging for us over Thanksgiving and we weren’t sure we could do it twice in month. Graham’s parents drove to Chicago to visit for the weekend, which was so nice. We exchanged gifts (They gave us a birdhouse!) and made many batches of cookies.
We didn’t make it to Brookfield Zoo, Breakfast with Santa at Chicago Botanic Garden, Lincoln Park Zoo or Christkindlmarket this month. Those events had been on my radar, but we just couldn’t make them happen this year. We aren’t fully adjusted to being a family of four and chose to make things easier for ourselves. My hope is that next year we will have more energy and have things more figured out. We did make it on the CTA Holiday Train, though, despite a little mishap. It’s one of our favorite family traditions.
Addi was able to meet Santa a couple of weeks ago. She stared at him and seemed puzzled by the strange man holding her, but at least she didn’t cry!
I wasn’t sure what to put in Addi’s stocking or what presents Santa should bring her at 8 months old. She ended up getting blocks, stackable rings, a fish toy, teethers, an Oball gift set, and a Fisher Price Laugh and Play Puppy. I also bought her a Cuddle + Kind doll, which provides 10 meals to children in need. V has a successful year and Santa brought her all the gifts on her wish list. (We allow her to make a list of five things she would like every year. We then purchase an additional gift(s) from us as her parents.) I saw a post around social media about the four-gift rule for children, and that seemed like a great idea and wonderful, but it’s not something we will do. We like to give our children whatever we would like to get them, and what the budget allows, and don’t think any parent should be shamed for their gifting choices. Whatever works for your family is best! Speaking of gifts, my wrapping was not that great this year. It’s a miracle that the wrapping even got done. ha!
A new tradition for us this year was matching Christmas pajamas, except my plans were foiled when the men’s sizes ran out weeks before, after I had already ordered the girls’ pajamas. I was hoping they would be restocked but they never were. I wasn’t able to find all of our sizes at any retailer that sold matching family pajamas. Next year I shall be on the ball and order them early!
Hope you had a wonderful holiday if you celebrate! What are your favorite traditions?
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Marette Flora is the founder of Floradise blog and personalized gift shop. Marette is a passionate storyteller and creator. She attended the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University and obtained a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communication.
She is passionate about creating helpful and meaningful things.