Just 38 Days Until Christmas!
This time of year is my absolute favorite time of the year. The holidays bring so much joy and so many opportunities to spend valuable time focusing on the things that really matter in life, like faith, family and gratitude.
Note: Some of the following links are affiliate links, which means I receive a commission based on sales generated via these links.
Since November snuck up on me, I didn't get an opportunity to create a Gratitude Project again this year. You can see the traveler's notebook style album I put together last year here. Instead, I decided to focus my spare time on preparing to create a holiday album that encompasses our gratitude for the year, all three major holidays and all of our favorite holiday traditions, which I'm sharing more about below!
I'll be using a 6x8 size binder with supplies I already have on hand and using some digital designs in hybrid format, so stay tuned because I'll be sharing more about that in the upcoming weeks. In the meantime, you can click here to see my 2015 album and here to see my 2016 album.
Since this decision, I've put thought into the things I want to focus on. Since this could very well be our last Christmas together as a couple without children (did you know we're adopting?!), I really want to document our favorite holiday traditions. While I know none of our traditions are unique, they are all traditions that bring the spirit of the holidays to our lives and our family time together. Here are a few I'm looking forward to:
PACKING OPERATION CHRISTMAS CHILD SHOEBOXES: This is my favorite tradition. My husband and I usually pack 4 shoeboxes each year. We typically buy for the boxes all year long, but this year things were a little too busy so we instead spent one late evening after work collecting items and packing our shoeboxes to be delivered to church. I slipped a little note for each child inside the boxes and they'll be collected this week to be shipped out all around the world. What a wonderful way to spread holiday joy and Jesus's love around the world. You can learn more about Operation Christmas Child via Samaritan's Purse.
DRIVING AROUND LOOKING AT CHRISTMAS LIGHTS: One evening before Christmas, usually on a nice chilly evening, we jump in the car and take off for burgers and ice cream at Freddy's. After our little stop for food, we drive around town and visit some different light shows while listening to Christmas music. This was a tradition for each of us as children and we've continued it together as a married couple. We are so excited for the day when we will have a little one with us to enjoy the lights also!
PROGRESSIVE DINNER ON CHRISTMAS EVE: This is a very new tradition for my husband's side of the family, one we started last year. However, after a HUGE success, we unanimously agreed to keep it. With life being so busy throughout the year, family time with his side of the family is few and far between. However, setting aside the entire day for a progressive dinner was really sweet. We spent a little time at each home and spent the entire day together. Plus, it really broke up the amount of work and cooking each home had to do so it didn't fall all on one person or couple. We are really looking forward to this tradition again.
BAKING COOKIES: Each year this tradition looks a little different for me. Throughout the year, I don't do much baking so I always eagerly anticipate putting on some Christmas music and baking for an entire day. Some years it has been with my mom, other years with my mother-in-law, and even still other years are with my sister. We never keep all the goodies to ourselves... We always share with our friends, family and neighbors. Yet another way to spread holiday cheer!
WATCHING CHRISTMAS MOVIES: This last tradition is probably one you all look forward to as well. With all the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it is nice to stay home, cuddle up under a warm blanket with a cup of hot cocoa and enjoy a quiet evening together, as a family, near the twinkling lights of the Christmas tree. Ahhh, I can almost taste the hot chocolate already! This year, I am SUPER EXCITED because beginning on Nov. 26th through Christmas Eve, Pure Flix is going to be sharing a FREE holiday movie every Sunday! Even better, because PureFlix.com is a faith and family based company, I know these movies are sure to be heartwarming and great for all ages.
What are your favorite holiday traditions? Share them with me in a comment below!
DOWNLOAD YOUR OWN FREE HOLIDAY BUCKET LIST PRINTABLE!
To help YOU prepare for the holiday season, I've created a FREE Holiday Bucket List for all of my sweet friends who want to document the season.
There is both a 6x8 version in white and color as well as traveler's notebook 4x8 version.
When you click to download the file below, you'll receive the white and colored .jpg lists to use it digitally, plus a .pdf version for easy printing on your home printer.
I hope you enjoy these and be sure to tag me (@TurquoiseAvenue) in your posts if you share your projects online! I can't wait to see what you create!