Our Family Holiday Traditions Written by Pamm Clark
We have always let our children have a birthday party every-other year. On the even years they may have a party and on the odd years we have "Family Birthday" and we try to do something special with just our family.
For Valentine's Day I got some pink and white heart doilies. I printed out the phrases of 1 Corinthians 13 and glued them to the middle of the hearts. I put them all around the house for reminders of what love is.
We try to make the true meaning of Easter as concrete as possible. On way is through Resurrection Eggs.
I know there is great controversy over Christians and Halloween. We have always kept the atmosphere a "party" atmosphere around our house. When we decorate, we use only those things God made such as pumpkins, spiders, skeletons and we don't include witches or ghosts.
Since the children were very small, I've put them in charge of coming up with their own costume. Since they've been given allowance, they are in charge of paying for their costume, too. They are very skilled in their "old age" now. They usually pick something they can go to a thrift store and put together and they have even borrowed costumes from friends. Here are some ideas:
Steve Irwin, the Crocodile Hunter
Dorthory, from the Wizzard of Oz
Turtle, character from Master of Disguise
Doctor & Nurse
I have made a turkey head and feet on a poster board that I reuse each year. I cut feathers out of colored contstruction paper. Beginning the first of November, as people come to our house (and of course our family members) they must fill out a feather that says "I am thankful for . . ." and they must fill in what they are thankful for and sign it. I put the feathers on the turkey and by Thanksgiving it's full of things people are thankful for.
Another idea would be to make a consturction paper chain and as people write what they are thankful for, put the links on the chain.
Ususally, the day after Thanksgiving we decorate. I miss having a real tree, but in the desert, it's not practical and we can decorate whenever we want. (The thrift store in the middle of the summer is the best time to buy an artifical tree.)
We make gingerbread houses out of graham crackers, homemade frosting, and candy (usually the left-over Halloween candy).
The "Spider Web Game" helps with the waiting until Christmas to open your gifts. About a week before Christmas, I choose one gift per child. I have the children leave. I tie one end of a ball of yarn to the gift and string the yarn all over a room or two or three; around chair and table legs, cupboard doors, door handles, etc. I tie a different color yarn to the gift to another child and do the same thing, etc. I now have a huge yarn mess in a couple of rooms. The children (at the same time) work to roll-up their ball of yarn and find the gift they can open.