Today is Day 4 of the Virtual Advent Tour, and that means it is my day to share a little bit about Christmas from my eyes with my readers.
Growing up my family didn't have a lot of money. My father was a truck driver and was on the road a lot of the time and my mother had to work what ever part time jobs she could to bring some extra money into the house. So needless to say our Christmas was rarely about the actual gifts we received. For us it was all about the small things we did every year that made us feel involved in the family traditions.
Every year we made some handmade decorations for the Christmas tree including the following:
- popcorn garlands
- paper ring garlands
- baked and painted salt dough ornaments
- crocheted ornaments
Also, my mother had these awesome bubble tree lights from when she was a child. Only one string had survived but we made sure it had a prominent spot at the front of the tree where we would see them easily every year. They were so cool because after you plugged them in they took a few minutes to get warmed up, but once they were, they just bubbled away happily until you unplugged them again before going to bed. I used to stare at them for hours (in between turned pages of my current read).
Besides the tree traditions we had a few other traditions that made us happy. One was the chocolate advent calendars. No matter how bad a year we were having we each were given our annual Christmas chocolate advent calendar. The chocolate rarely made it through the whole 24 days, but it was a comfort just having the little doors to open every night before bed. Added to this we also did the 12 nights of Christmas marked with the lighting of one Christmas candle. We would sit there and stare as the little candle melted into a little pool of wax on a tinfoil covered side plate.
I think two of my favourite traditions were actually gift related. The first was the fact that my parents always allowed us to open on of our gifts on Christmas Eve (usually to keep us distracted until the following morning). We could open any gift of our choosing as long as it wasn't the "main" gift. I remember one year getting a picking basket (like the ones with apples etc in them ) filled with Barbies and Barbie clothing, and my brother got a similar basket filled with dinky cars, and we just messed around with those all night until we were exhausted. It was awesome.
What family traditions do you remember fondly from your childhood years?