Establishing a family Christmas tradition.

“What did you get for Christmas?” my daughter’s friend asked her, as we were having dinner, New Year’s Eve. I’ve never liked that question. The materialism attached to this holiday season has always disturbed me. And so, I don’t answer the question (usually) directly. Instead, I share one of my most precious Christmas traditions.

Every year, my husband and I (and now our daughters) give each other a Christmas ornament. This ornament is chosen with great care to represent “the thing we’ll remember most about that year”.

For example, this year, our beloved, not-quite-five year old Golden Retriever, Calee, was killed by a car, speeding down our country road. My gift to my husband was a sterling silver Golden Retriever ornament  with a dog tag, engraved with “Rest In Peace,Calee,2010”.

We have been sharing this tradition for 23 Christmases. So, when we finally finish decorating our  fourteen foot tree and stand back to gaze in wonder, we see our history together as a couple and as a family on that tree.

“Oh look! That was the year we built the house!”
“What’s this one, Mama?”
“Papa gave that one to me the year we were pregnant with you”.

Imagine the stories……the legacy left to a child - a Christmas box filled with ornaments that tell the story of her family’s history.

That’s what I got for Christmas!