Right on the heels of Thanksgiving comes Christmas. If you hadn't noticed, or if you've been living under a rock, going out anywhere post Halloween you would have noticed all the Christmas decorations that were already on display. Even the Christmas music. Honestly, I sort of missed listening to Halloween music. I love those oldies they play on the radio. Nostalgia! It seems that no one really knows what is responsible, but someone started the super early Christmas trend and now I think we're missing out on some great old traditions.
But then, maybe we can set up some new traditions. My kids have been military brats for most of their little lives. This is the first holiday is goodness knows how long that we are living near those who are near and dear to us. Tradition with the kids and I up until this point usually involved going to the USO for holiday festivities, which was wonderful because they were always so kind and welcoming. Thanksgiving was always the kids favorite time to go to the USO. They always had an over abundance of food, and even gave them little early Christmas presents. It was super sweet. And of course they'd have football playing for the guys who wanted to hang out and do that. Sometimes they even had crafts for the kids to make. That was always a winner with the kids! Crafts, or cookie decorating. It was different each year.
When I was growing up, Thanksgiving was usually just my immediate family-- my 5 siblings and our parents. Or any combination. Or sometimes we'd go to my grandparents house, I think. Mom would always set the table with the super fancy plates and Great Grandma's silverware, and we'd use fabric napkins and lucky the ones that got to wash the dishes after!
This year I invited my siblings to come to our house, since it's our first Thanksgiving back in California. And maybe we'll start some new traditions. I thought it would be fun to make some Christmas decorations while we wait for the turkey to bake and watch some good old movies or something. Just spend some time together. So we'll be decorating felt mitten ornaments with puffy paint and some other fun activities.
Well, guess what? That was a grand idea, to make decorations! Best laid plans and all that jazz. It's ok, what did happen was some beautiful family time and some much needed "chilling" with glasses of wine, good conversation, some video games, some laughter. All the best things. Full tummies and all. It's ok. It was just as it should have been, it's just what we all needed apparently!
So the kids and I will take some time to make some decorations and hang them on the mantel or tree, and maybe send one or two to some aunts and uncles.
They couldn't be any easier.
What you need:
- Felt Mitten shapes about 3 or 4 inches tall. I made my own template, but I'm sure you could find one somewhere for free.
- Puffy Paint in white. (Or Sparkly white if you're feeling daring.)
- Some string and a needle to attach for hanging the mittens once the paint has dried.
Once they are dry, tie a simple look to hang them! Easy as that. They'd be cute hanging on a tree, a mantle, or a banister.
Sometimes the best holidays are the ones where what you plan doesn't happen, but what does happen is that all that is needed happens. Maybe the kids and I needed to be able to spend time together doing these things. Time and experiences are precious things to share. I hope you and your dear ones get to spend some quality time together this holiday season.