Usually as Christmas approaches I start to get a little twinge of sadness, this feeling like the magical season is almost over, even though I know it’s not true. I know Christmas is a liturgical season, I know it lasts until Epiphany or even Candlemas if your getting really technical, but sometimes it doesn’t FEEL like Christmas the whole season.
It FEELS like the majority of the Christmas celebrating world is done with it all by December 26. For many Christmas is celebrated throughout advent and comes to an abrupt end the evening of the 25th.
I really want to celebrate the liturgical season of Christmas in my home, so I’ve been looking for simple ways to stay present in the season, to savor it and enjoy it. Here are some simple ways to keep the Christmas Spirit in your home throughout the entire season:
- Keep saying Merry Christmas! It’s simple, but I think continuing to greet others with Merry Christmas is a great way to shift our mindset into thinking of Christmas as a season rather than a day.
2. Leave up some decorations. I know this is a deal breaker for some people. I get it, sometimes it feels cluttered and we’re craving a fresh start for the new year. But maybe there are a few decorations that could stay out. Start small. What decorations do you really enjoy? For me, I love the twinkle lights so our tree stays up through Epiphany. The little people nativity that is always scattered around on the other hand, gets packed away. I also put away stockings and some other Knick knacks throughout the house.
3. Light some Christmas candles. Swap your advent candles for white candles and continue to light it during the Christmas season.
4. Prayer before meals. Using a Christmas season prayer before meals is a super easy way to remind ourselves this isn’t ordinary time, it’s Christmas. I’m including a prayer card that you can use at the end of this post!
5. Keep the Christmas books out. Do you have a collection of children’s Christmas books? Instead of immediately boxing them up, keep them out and continue to enjoy reading them. Next year I’m thinking about dividing our collection up and putting half out during advent and a new group for the Christmas season.
6. The traveling Kings. When I set up my nativity I always place the Kings across the room, because they don’t arrive until epiphany. Each night between Christmas and epiphany the Kings can move closer to the manger to represent their journey and arrival.
7. Give Gifts/send cards throughout the Christmas season. I know, we run the risk of looking like we just don’t have it all together, but that’s okay! Maybe you intentionally decided to give treats/gifts to neighbors right before New Years, when the onslaught of goodies has cleared. This year I decided to start giving epiphany gifts to my godchildren and girlfriends instead of Christmas. It gives me a little less to think about before the December 25 “deadline” and spreading out the giving and receiving of gifts can definitely draw the season out.
8. Play Christmas music. Don’t ditch the Christmas tunes just because the radio has stopped playing them. Create a playlist that you can enjoy all season long and that will remind you of the joy of the season.
9. Plan and save some memory making opportunities for the season. Instead of feeling the rush and panic of squeezing all the magically memory making activities in before Christmas, what if you saved a few for the Christmas season. Movie nights, baking, dance parties…they are all wonderful ways to continue celebrating.
10. Celebrate Epiphany– Planning a little celebration of epiphany is another great way to remind ourselves that Christmas isn’t over.
Do you have some traditions or practices that you do throughout the Christmas season? I would love to hear how your family celebrates!