Photo by Sean Locke Photography

Have you ever wondered how you could make Christmas special when you don’t know how Christmas will look for you from one year to the next? One of the challenges of being a blended family is knowing how to create “family traditions” around this time of year with all of the unique family dynamics that exist. With that in mind, we decided to have a few of our contributors share how they create unity during the holiday season. Read below as we share 8 Ideas and Tips to help your family Celebrate Christmas

Vince and Jennifer said:

“We like to have the children take Santa pictures together and read The Christmas Story from the Bible on Christmas morning before we open presents.”

Gartrell and Frechic said:

“Every year for Christmas instead of gifts, we invest in a fun getaway like Kalahari, a nice hotel or a weekend family vacation. We started this tradition initially to save money, but it became a wonderful way to show our children that the only thing that matters to us is love and family! We believe in the spirit of Christmas and the undeserving and unmerited favor of Jesus birth. The kids look forward to this time every year.”

Marlia said:

“We make fun games from scratch. Each child comes up with a game, and we play it. Then my husband and I create games as well that are fun, and we teach them to the kids. We also look forward to getting all the kids in the kitchen to help cook then enjoying what we made together.”

Emily said:

“My stepson and I always go to the movies over Christmas break. The last couple years it’s been Star Wars! I’m looking forward to going again this year. It’s something simple and something we all enjoy. I also love getting Starbucks (I’m a big coffee fan) and driving through the neighborhoods to see the lights. We did this when I was a kid and when my stepson was little, and I still love driving around with my husband.

Willie and Rachel said:

“Every Christmas we have Christmas brunch. We have found it more helpful to do this rather than dinner because it allows the kids to visit other family members and loved ones later in the day. Everyone pitches in to help prepare the brunch. We set the table, and everyone sits down at the table. We have Christmas music playing and more food than we ever actually consume. This year we would like to include reading the Christmas Story from the Bible before we eat. We also really enjoy watching Christmas movies leading up to Christmas. Our favorite is Miracle on 34th Street.”

So what are some tips to celebrating when the kids aren’t with you for Christmas?

  1. Be sure to call or text– Give the other parent or family time to go through their Christmas routine then call and see how things are going and wish the child a Merry Christmas. Talk to them for a while and reassure them that you miss them and can’t wait until they get home but you want them to enjoy their time there, so you will call them later.
  1. Don’t break Tradition– It may be tempting to feel like,”if everyone isn’t here to celebrate then we don’t celebrate, ” but that is unfair to the other family members. The children that are away are still experiencing Christmas, just in a different place and in a different way. They will get to experience it with you next time or when they return. In the meantime, have fun with all the other children. Stick with your usual Christmas routine and have a good time!
  1. Enjoy the time with your spouse– Waking up next to your spouse on Christmas morning and being able to hang all day long together should be a gift in itself.  We don’t get that often, so we have learned to treasure any opportunity we get to be together, even if it is Christmas. Enjoy the time you have with your spouse and make memories.

We hope you found these ideas and tips helpful and we would love for you to share some of your own. Leave a comment or join our Facebook community and tell us – How do you make Christmas work in your Blended Family?