When grandchildren began springing into our family I searched for ideas on how to make lasting memories in their little minds of Christmas at Grandma’s. It was and still is my desire for them to grasp hold of the real meaning of Christmas and never allow commercialism to erase that truth…the truth that Jesus IS the real reason we have Christmas.
Now, I must admit too, that I want them to have special Christmas memories of spending time with me…Grandma… so when I’m long gone from this earth they will remember all the fun we had at our annual Christmas Slumber Party at Grandma’s. Maybe, just maybe, they will start their own tradition when they become a grandparent.
The evening begins with a birthday party for Jesus. The sparkle in their eyes capture the flickering flame of the candle placed in each child’s cupcake. The overhead light is turned off while their faces gleam with uncontrollable smiles as they sing Happy Birthday to Jesus. The candles are extinguished quickly as they dig into the delectable sweetness of a colorful mountain of icing leaving the cake behind. Laughter permeates the room. My heart is full.
The story never grows old as we discuss why we have Christmas. Through the years I’ve been thrilled as each grandchild gives their version of Jesus’ birth, death, and even His resurrection. They’ve heard it over and over and they not only talk about His birth, but His entire life…miracles and all. This is only the beginning of our evening together.
It wouldn’t be Christmas without the huge mess of each child digging their hands into sugar cookie dough, cutting their own designs of angels, snowmen, Christmas trees, stars, and all the shapes of Christmas. The table fills with spilled colored sugar and their eyes dance with excitement at their success of burying the cookie under a pile of sugar. What fun!
Once we’ve successfully emptied every sugar bottle and icing decorating tube, the mess is cleaned up and our craft begins. We always have a craft. One year it was the imprint of their hands and feet in molding clay, then it went from making their own stockings, to decorating their stockings, to making Christmas ornaments, painting with water colors, making sun-catchers, etc., etc.
And then there’s the Christmas puzzle to keep the older ones busy as the younger ones finish their crafts. Not to mention, I’ve prepared each of them a gift bag already partially filled with goodies. We wrap their artistically designed cookies and their craft and gently place them inside the gift bag to take home.
Everyone grabs their pillow and blanket for the Christmas Movie Marathon. The house lights are turned out and they settle on the floor around the Christmas tree to watch movies. One-by-one. I watch their eyelids grow heavy until they drift off to sleep. The lights on the Christmas tree with the glistening decorations are the perfect end to a perfect night.
I started this tradition with only three grandchildren. We have increased through the years to twelve. What fun! What a tradition! What a lasting memory!!
I challenge you to make a memory in someones life this Christmas.