One of the things I enjoy about Christmas is all the crazy fun we have! For us, the celebrating starts Christmas Eve when we attend our church’s evening service and then goes into the new year to Epiphany (January 6.) In many countries, Epiphany is the day people exchange gifts; calling it “Three Kings Day” in commemoration of when the three kings gave Jesus their gifts. I didn’t know until several years ago that “the 12 days of Christmas” are the days between Christmas Day and Epiphany. Since then, we have given ourselves permission to “celebrate” during that time period in all sorts of crazy ways. One of my favorite memories is of when our church did a “Gong Show” on one of those “12 days” years ago. Also, I have always appreciated when our church has done a special dinner or concert on Epiphany because it’s such a lovely way to conclude the Season.
I thought I would share some of the traditions we will be doing and would love to hear about some of yours!
- After the Christmas Eve Service our kids, grandkids and any friends that want to stop at our house (for about an hour or hour and a half) for appetizers and eggnog or spiced cider. We do stockings then and turn on the fireplace to relax a bit and enjoy each others company.
- Our special Birthday Cake for Jesus: You will need a cake iced in white icing (the white represents the purity of Christ); 21 candles (red if you can get them) representing the 21 centuries that have passed since Jesus walked on this earth and the red representing His royalty. Also, look for some plastic greenery (I use holly) that is washable to place around the base of the cake-representing life-everlasting. We usually do this after Christmas dinner but you can do it any time from Christmas Eve to Epiphany. (Do it every day if you just want to be crazy!) Just remember to go over with your guests what each piece symbolizes so they will appreciate what it all represents. We usually sing Silent Night and then Happy Birthday when the candles are lit.
- We like to take drives at night to see the Christmas lights in neighborhoods around us because it is nice to get out and see what others are doing to celebrate Christ’s birth. We are hoping to take our Grandboys up to see the lights of Longwood Gardens one evening-their parents too if they want to join us! Check your local paper to see what’s going on in your area and take advantage of them.
- We also hope to invite friends in at least one evening to play games and share fellowship together.
- This year I’ve collected a number of pine cones to wire and then will have our grandsons over to help put peanut butter and bird seed on them. Then we will hang them from the trees in our backyard for the birds. “Letting heaven and nature sing!”
Enjoy the Season to His Glory!