What are your favorite family traditions during the Christmas Season?


Some of ours are as simple as reading the same books every year and looking through our Christmas scrapbooks, sharing stories about previous years memories! And who can forget listening to the reading of the story of baby Jesus and singing Silent Night?

Of course, we didn’t have all of these fabulous books right away when we had children. The collection has grown over the past 15 years. Now, as the kids get older, I dream of the day when I get to cuddle a grandchild and read them the same books I read their parents.

As the years go by, my children tend to pick one or two of the books as their favorites. Then as one of their gifts, I purchase that book to put in their keepsake/future box, so that they have a small collection for when they have children!

This idea was inspired by my parents and grandparents. As a little girl, every Christmas I received a special ornament with a gift to put in my ornaments box, so that when I got married I had a box of special ornaments with a story behind them. We are also continuing this idea of special ornaments for our children, but this way it is the gift that keeps giving through the generations…hopefully.


Here is a list of our family’s favorite Christmas books:

You may be confused right now as you look down the line of children’s books our family has invested and wonder why I would have and be recommending books about Saint Nicholas. Well, I will tell you. Isaac and I have always tried to engage teaching our children about what the culture does, but to do so through a Christian world view. Part of that means, that instead ignoring “santa,” we teach our children who he really was. That he was a man, a man who loved God, and gave generously, but that many of the tales about him are exaggerated for fun. Then we teach them WHY we don’t celebrate Santa but find other ways to have extra celebratory traditions that focus on Christ instead, such as making Jesus a birthday cake every year. The books above are great resources to help you teach about who the man St. Nick was, and educate your children without it consuming your Christmas. That way they aren’t in the loop when other people ask. I believe it is important and respectful to be careful to teach your children that it is NOT their responsibility of jurisdiction to tell other kids that He is not real though. That is for the parents to teach and decide.

Advent Studies We Like:

Over the years, this has been the thing lacking most in our home. Honestly, there weren’t a lot of resources available when we first started having babies, but now there seems to be many to choose from. Below are the ones we have tried and liked as well as a book recommendation I think you will enjoy as a parent. It was helpful when I was a young mom in challenging my thinking to be intentional about the traditions we practiced and not just do what everyone else did or what I grew up with {Redeeming the Season, published by Focus on the Family}.

Lastly, I would recommend selecting a cute journal to jot down or scribe your family discussions when doing the activities and answering the questions in the advent studies. It’s fun to look back. This is a new tradition I just started for our family, now that the kids are really engaging more with answers.

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This time of year can be a challenge for the Christian parent who wants to truly make the focus of the holiday season centered on Jesus Christ. We have to purpose to say no to things in order to say yes to having the quality time to sit down and read with our children and teach them how to be still, and know God.


One thing we have especially enjoyed this year was journaling our families advent devotional time. We invested in Ann Voskamp’s newest book, “Unwrapping the Greatest Gift” and have been journaling our discussion question answers. And upon inspiration from this project we have decided it would be fun to journal every year in the same book. To have as a fun memory keepsake to go with our Christmas Scrapbooks!

What are your favorite family traditions? Or favorite books to read during the holidays?