It’s not uncommon these days to find Christmas merchandise sneaking into displays the day after Labor Day. By October, it’s the first thing you see walking into major department stores. Your Christmas shopping list is longer than your grocery list. The expectation you have to meet for each family member drives your Christmas budget through the roof. Of course we love surprising our loved ones with gifts that surpass their expectations, and in doing so, we are showing them how much we love and care for them.
But I often think about the “good ol’ days” when no one had “wish lists”, Arnold would get a scarf from his wife, and Christmas was more about the kids than anything. I notice how in old movies they shopped on Christmas Eve instead of Black Friday. Those were the days, the days when there wasn’t so much pressure…and Christmas was more about a good meal and games with the family than who got the most expensive present.
Many still remember Christmas over 50 years ago. Most families didn’t have the budget to buy gifts for extended family, and so many didn’t have money to buy gifts at all. Yet, Christmas was so very special for them. For some, Christmas was the only day of the year they got to eat poultry. Puddings were prepared weeks in advance, adding to the children’s anticipation for the special day.
Little boys typically wished for Jax, a tin of Dominoes, or maybe an electric train set. For girls, Ginny Dolls and Barbie dolls were popular. Many mothers would be busy for weeks before Christmas sewing pajamas and special Christmas outfits.
Remembering how our parents and grandparents spent Christmas can help us appreciate how blessed we are nowadays. I think incorporating some of the old traditions could make Christmas even more special for your family. Whether you find a dish to cook only at Christmas time, or give the kids a new set of pajamas to wake up in on Christmas day, these can be memories that your family will cherish and maybe even carry on through generations to come.
Do you and your family already have time-honored traditions? What are you celebrating today? Merry Christmas from FOLK!!
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