Christmas Traditions or Just Gifts

What family traditions do you have at your house? If you have kids what Christmas traditions will they talk about with their kids someday? Do your kids only care about Christmas gifts or do they look forward to Christmas traditions and family time? When I was single for years to being a divorced dad for years after a long marriage, I know that is a whole other story of what Christmas is like. Christmas is much more enjoyable for myself being married than not. I have met single people that don’t even decorate their house for Christmas and it is just another day of the year for them.

Maybe I am old fashion with my Christmas beliefs on traditions. But I miss them. I grew up in a time before cell phones and cable TV. My mom didn’t work due to health issues and my dad worked at a factory most of his life. We had one TV and one old telephone in our kitchen. But I had good memories of Christmas time. The month of December we had our house decorated. We watched a Christmas show I think every night. We would go drive around and look at Christmas lights, especially to the house across from our Jr High School. Each Christmas eve we went to my Grampa Mills house and all my Aunts, Uncles and cousins would be there. We had tons of food and then played games till it was time to go to church. We went to my Grampa’s house for family time and not the gift they gave us. They didn’t have much money but still tried to get us all something little which we appreciated. Christmas day my mom would make a big breakfast and cinnamon rolls for after we opened our presents. Then we played with our gifts and ate a big afternoon meal as a family. Then we played more or watch some more Christmas shows on TV. Those were good memories.

2017 over 68% of married couples had kids under age 18. In 1950 that number was 93%. Is the reduction of that number of the following issues:
* Kids cost a lot of money to raise in today’s world?
* Work demands and work days are longer today than in 1950?
* We are more mobile with work and travel more?
* We have more selfish interests?
* Electronics have taken over our lives?

2017 in US over 45 percent of adults over age 18 were single. I was single for a while and married for a while and then divorced for a long time and now I am married again. But I can relate to single life as an adult during Christmas time. I have talked with many singles that just don’t enjoy Christmas time, that is probably why a lot of them didn’t even put up a Christmas tree. I know many years I would wake up and go into work so I could get ahead on my work. Normally not too many people would be at work so I could get a lot done. I would still watch some Christmas shows and they would bring back my good memories as a kids and other times before electronics took over our lives.
For instance, now in our family with Mrs. RE working such crazy hours we don’t see her much. For instance, she goes into work some days at 1am and gets home at 4pm and then off to bed by 7pm. So, from the time she takes a shower and we eat supper and maybe run an errand or two doesn’t leave much time for anything else. She has been working 7 days a week for a while due to work being so busy and they are short of help.

We have two boys at home but they are on their cell phones so much when they are with us and they are always trying to get to their rooms to play Xbox. Today for instance our oldest son has been playing Xbox for 9 hours and still going strong. Our youngest son has been playing for over 7 hours and going strong at 10pm on December 21st. We are only 4 days from Christmas but I don’t think the kids think about anything but their cell phones and Xbox.

To me I think kids only think about Christmas gifts on Christmas morning that they can open and that is it. There is no traditions anymore from wanting to play games, go see Christmas lights, family time to Christmas foods they like. Our one son when asked said he wants Beans and Burger for a meal Christmas day and a new Xbox game. Our youngest son just wants Mac and Cheese for a meal and V Bucks for his FortNite Video game. In the past on Christmas day the kids open their gifts and we hardly ever see them the rest of the day again until we eat. Then when we eat or get them to sit with us in the living room they are still looking at their cell phones. We are all guilty of that. Especially Mrs. RE gets text messages every night and during the night with work issues or questions it seems.

With Electronics, Video Games, Cell Phones and work demands that we have in our world today will we ever have Christmas traditions again or is it an old fashion dream. I was talking to a friend the other day and he closed his Facebook account because he got tired of seeing all these photos of people having Christmas fun. He said that a small percentage of people really have all that fun as families in today’s world and I would have to agree.

Again, from talking with many other people that are married to people single or without kids they seem to feel the same. That go me writing this blog on ideas how we can bring back or start new family traditions. If you are a parent of kids that live at home ask yourself;

– What are we teaching our kids?
– What do our kids think of Christmas?
– What does your kids think of Christmas Traditions?
– What will they do with their kids during Christmas season?
– What is important to your kids during Christmas season?

Some ideas for families to try;
* Unplug electronics for a certain amount of family time each day in December. Put all cell phones in the silent mode, put them in a box and put the box in a closet so no one is tempted to check their messages.
* Only watch Christmas or Family shows in the month of December with the kids.
* Family time each day with the kids to either play games or watch Christmas or family shows.
* Start a Christmas eve tradition. Maybe go to a Church service or a drive to look at Christmas lights.
* Do a volunteer activity in the month helping others in need out as a family. Take them gifts and food.
* Have a Christmas Day traditions from meals, games to play to family time.
* Decorate the house the first of November as the family inside and out to help get everyone in the mood.
* Make Christmas Cookies as a family and deliver trays to your neighbors and close friends.
* Go Christmas Caroling as a family.
* Have everyone share on Christmas day all the things they are grateful for in their life.

It is much more enjoyable sharing Christmas with others. So, if you are single here are some ideas of things to help get you in the Christmas spirit;
* Decorate your house or apartment for Christmas. Get yourself in the mood.
* Unplug when home. Turn your cell phone off and don’t look at your social media accounts for hours a night. Spend time on the Christmas spirit.
* Make some Christmas Cookies yourself or go buy some. May not help your diet but it may help your Christmas spirit having them around the house.
* Do volunteer work during the month of Christmas. It is a good feeling and a way to meet new friends.
* Why not find some other singles to enjoy the day together. Have a little party at your place or everyone meets at a restaurant.
* Watch Christmas shows on TV or movies.

If you don’t have kids and don’t want to celebrate Christmas that is your choice and nothing is wrong with that either. With the savings from decorations and gifts you could go on a winter cruise to some warm tropical island and relax on the beach or jump on a air plane and travel to somewhere warm to play golf till you drop.

Let me know your thoughts and if you have Christmas traditions let me know what they are. Some of my Christmas wishes are;
* Everyone enjoys Christmas time and no one has to celebrate it alone.
* That my boys would unplug and read some of an educational book daily, work on their computer programing skills daily and spend time with their family. That they would think less of gifts for themselves and more about helping out others.
* Also, that everyone reading this blog would support my Patreon page and buy my books. That’s my pipe dream. LOL

I hope everyone has a Merry Christmas.

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Here is a positive quote I like; “Remind yourself daily that there is no way to happiness; rather, happiness is the way.” ― Wayne W. Dyer, Change Your Thoughts – Change Your Life: Living the Wisdom of the Tao

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