It’s that time again, time to look at the month ahead, and all the fun opportunities to make memories and celebrate the season. To be honest I hesitated to do a Let’s Celebrate post for December. I feel like there is such a temptation to jam pack December with all sorts of activities, which can leave us feeling stressed and overwhelmed, and I didn’t want to add to the “do it all” noise. But I think there are some really fun, simple ways to enjoy this special season that I wanted to share, because maybe they would be perfect for your family. Just promise me that you will pick and choose the activities that will bring joy and peace to your home, and let go of all the rest. Let go of the hustle and bustle and the fear of missing out and embrace what truly connects your family and fills your hearts.
Days to Celebrate
- Dec. 5- N. Comfort Food Day
- Dec. 8- N. Brownie Day
- Dec. 13- N. Hot Cocoa Day
- Dec. 18- N. Bake Cookies Day
- Dec. 21- Winter Solstice
- Dec. 25- Christmas
- Dec. 31- New Years Eve
There are some really special feast days this month that you might enjoy celebrating. Here a few to check out:
- Dec. 6- St. Nicholas Day Traditionally kids leave there shoes by the back door on Dec. 5 and wake up to a few treats from St. Nick on the 6th.
- Dec. 8- Immaculate Conception (Holy Day of Obligation)
- Dec. 10- Our Lady of Loreto A fairly new feast day. Here is a good post about the history behind the day. We plan to decorate gingerbread houses to commemorate the Holy home from Nazareth that found it’s way to Loreto.
- Dec. 12- Our Lady of Guadalupe
- Dec. 13- St. Lucia Another popular feast day, especially in Sweden, that has rich traditions. Here is a post with some fun ideas. Last year we cheated and made cinnamon rolls for our St. Lucy buns, but if you want a authentic recipe try this post.
Memories to Make
Welcome Winter-We love to welcome each new season, and celebrate what we love about the season. Keep it simple: read a winter themed book, go for a winter nature walk, play winter bingo or just toast season with sparkling grape juice.
Take a bubble bath by candle light or twinkle light– I’m keeping this one in my back pocket for a night when we could use a little magic. Candles and twinkle lights make everything a little more festive and special. Run the diffuser, play some calming music and it could be a new favorite tradition! Leave it all set up and treat yourself after the kids are in bed.
Sip hot cocoa and read a stack of books– Reading to my kids is top on my list of Mom duties. I do not excel at pretend play, but I love to cozy up with a stack of books. Fun treats and the twinkle of Christmas lights add to the charm.
Have a birthday party for Jesus- This doesn’t have to be elaborate, but a few years ago we started making our Christmas morning breakfast a “Happy Birthday” Jesus party by singing Happy Birthday to Jesus and baking some kind of treat. It’s such a sweet tradition with kiddos.
Bake Together– Baking with my kids is sometimes fun…and sometimes an opportunity to grow in patience, but my kids really do enjoy it. Bake brownies on National Brownie Day or Cookies on National Bake Cookies Day, or if your an extra fun mom, do both!
Curate a festive family playlist– I playlist of everyone’s favorite advent/Christmas tunes is a great way to lift everyone’s spirits. Turn it on during a clean up session or during the witching hour and dance the crazies out.
Books to Checkout
It was hard to stick to just a few book recommendations this month. I included a few favorite Christmas books as well as a fun read for the start of Winter.
The Christmas Cookie Sprinkle Snitcher is a silly read about a thief that steals all the sprinkles in town and a brave young boy with a plan to remedy the problem.
Who is Coming to Our House is a quick read that my two littles like to read over and over again. It follows the animals in the stable as they prepare their home for a special visitor who of course, is Jesus.
The Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree is new to us this year. It is a sweet story of a little girl who’s father is away at war and is supposed to return for Christmas. Just a heads up if your kids still believe in Santa Clause you may want to pre-read. (The mother makes a doll that St. Nicholas later gives to the daughter…my littles didn’t catch on, but I didn’t want you to be surprised.)
The Grumpy Old Ox is another story on repeat about a grumpy old ox who is transformed by sharing his stable with the Holy Family.
If Winter Comes, Tell it I’m not Here is a fun read, especially if you don’t look forward to the cold of winter.
Goodbye Autumn, Help Winter is another read perfect for the winter solstice that depicts the changes that come with Winter.
Spread the Love
This is a great time of year to look for ways to show kindness to others, and there are tons of ideas out there! Two of our favorites are to deliver hot cocoa to friends, or to set up a little cocoa stand (the winter version of a lemonade stand) and give cocoa away to anyone who stops by. Another favorite is to go caroling. If you don’t feel like a great singer invite others to join you and spread some cheer together. If you can’t get out try setting up a zoom caroling and invite friends and family to hop on and join in!
A Recipe to Share
There is no shortage of treats this time of year…they are everywhere…at events, being dropped off by friends and family! I love hearing about everyone’s favorite recipes this time of year. If you are looking for a festive snack to throw together for reading books or watching a family movie give “Merry Munch” a try!
Pop some popcorn, toss in pretzels, and chex cereal and spread out on a sheet pan. Then drizzle with melted white chocolate. While the chocolate is still warm sprinkle with festive sprinkles and holiday m&ms. Feel free to get crazy with your add ins! I think chopped up Oreos would be yummy, too!
I hope you have a blessed and restful Advent and a festive Christmas season!