It’s never easy to move, but it’s usually fun to have a new home. By “new” we don’t mean brand new, but new for you. And Christmas is right around the corner, so hopefully, you’ve marked the boxes that contain all of your Christmas home decorations and personalized Christmas ornaments so the holidays will be bright and sparkly.
“Our First Christmas Together in Our New Home”
Moving Day has come and gone. The reality of the move is evident throughout the house filled with cardboard boxes, wrapped up artwork, furniture in odd places, and who knows where anything is! All spare time in the weeks ahead will be devoted to unpacking and reorganizing the family’s possessions. Then next comes finding out where the closest Trader Joe’s is, which roads are backed up during the morning commute, a good daycare school, and a place to get the car fixed. Moving is rough.
And sometimes being in a new home is a little rough too. No one is sleeping as well in their new rooms. There are different creaks and sounds during the night. Lots of new general maintenance issues to deal with, and paintings, artwork, and mirrors to hang in each room. To paint or not to paint? Will all this stuff fit in the garage or basement? What to do with all the boxes and packing materials after the boxes are emptied? And, did I mention?, Christmas is coming right up. The kids are starting to worry…. will Santa come here?
Some ideas on making your First Christmas in Our New Home a memorable event!
– Whatever the state of your home right now, be sure and find your box of Christmas home decorations, and do some nice decorating. Maybe this isn’t the year to go all out in every nook and cranny of the house, but do some of the simple but meaningful things. Put a wreath on the outside of your new front door. Or a cute sign or banner in the front yard. Hang the stockings up on the mantle, waiting for Santa on Christmas Eve. Put a Snow House or other Christmas oriented theme centerpiece on your dining table, and get out the red candles!
– Be sure to have a family event going to get the Christmas tree. Or, if you have an artificial tree, set aside a whole day to set it up. There’s nothing quite like the night you turn on the Christmas lights for the first time to make everyone excited about Christmas.
-Decorate the tree as a family, or …. invite a few friends over to a tree trimming party… keeping it simple with some mulled wine, or apple juice, some purchased Christmas cookies, some yummy cheeses and crackers, and friendship. Your friends will understand everything’s not unpacked yet, and they might even offer to give you a hand for an afternoon!
-Enjoy looking through your ornament collection and telling your children about where certain ornaments came from, and letting them find their own personalized Baby’s First Christmas ornament, and other family ornaments with their names on them. Talk about Christmas celebrations at other homes you’ve lived in, and which parts of those celebrations you want to continue in this new home.
– Put up a few outdoor lights or something to show your new neighborhood you are ready for Christmas. Decorate the mailbox with something colorful.
-Have a few friends over to make dough ornaments. This only requires some white flour, Morton’s salt, water, and food coloring, and some willing hands to mix and knead the dough. Here are our special instructions on Making Your Own Dough Ornaments At Home. It’s great fun!
– Make sure you plan a Christmas Eve and Christmas Day that is family oriented. If you are still unpacking, keep it simple. Lots of people have Chinese food on Christmas. Get what the kids love, and if it’s turkey dinner, consider purchasing a ready-made dinner from your local Whole Foods or other markets that offers a yummy rotisserie roasted Turkey! Go ahead for once and use pretty Christmas paper plates. Keep the stress down, you’ll all have more fun.
– Invite some friends over close to Christmas day to watch a Christmas movie. Pick one the kids will love – there are so many available on Net Flix, or at the local video store. Think of fun holiday finger foods for everyone. But again, keep it simple, or make it a potluck. And, not every party has to be for dinner.
– If you have moved far from friends and extended family, set up some specific times to have a Skype Christmas together. Everyone’s busy at this time of year, so it’s a good idea to plan ahead and book 15-20 minutes with the grandparents, friends, old neighbors. The children will love their turn to talk and will be so happy to see their friends.
– Watch for a local caroling opportunity or nativity play in your new neighborhood. Be sure to attend all school holiday events – a great place to meet some parents of your children’s new friends. Get out and sing with a group, whether it’s in a neighborhood and house to house, or going to visit a local senior citizen’s group living.
New and Old Traditions:
– If it’s a new or old tradition, be sure to make or buy a new personalized ornament with your entire family on it celebrating “First Christmas in Our New Home”. Have it personalized with everyone’s names! Choose a cute saying or add the address of your new home on the base. And don’t forget the year.
– Now’s the time to remember the best of your family traditions, and keep them. The continuity is important for the kids and it will make this first Christmas more fun.
-Take lots of photos!
-Make the house smell pretty with spiced apple juice on the stove.
– If you go to church on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, be sure to plan ahead and find a house of worship that’s close by and check the times of the services. Continue your family tradition of worship.
-If you put out cookies and milk for Santa and Reindeer, please don’t forget this year!
– Find cute stocking stuffers and treats for the Christmas morning stockings. If your computer is set up, do most of your shopping online and have things gift wrapped. If that’s not right for you, try to keep it simple, with no midnight assembly projects! (you might not be able to find the tools!)
– Keep the holiday music playing, and sing a lot!
And remember, Christmas comes but once a year! Enjoy your First Christmas in your New Home.