We love family traditions for their unmistakeable ‘feel good’ factor. There is something remarkable about the coming-together of loved ones, of collectively creating memories, of indulging in much-loved customs. As the holiday season draws near, parents from the WellVine community share with us their own festive family traditions that they are creating with their children.
Of santas and little helpers
JING, MUM TO BLUEBELL
“We love making some baby-friendly crafts together, especially at Christmas time. This year we plan to make ‘sock santas’, perfect for our Christmas tree. Bluebell’s a great little helper! She is fascinated by anything that mum and dad do, so I’m sure she’ll be right in there with our little santa creations”
Of new adventures of the festive kind
RISHABH, DAD TO MEHR
“I think my favourite thing really is to see the world through Mehr’s eyes, and experience the new adventures she discovers. Mehr’s nursery had organised a nativity play recently. It was Mehr’s first ever play, and she (with her classmates) were taking it very seriously indeed! I was incredibly proud of the show my Angel pulled together alongside other angels, shepherds, kings, wise men and the like. It was a great production and a great way to kick off the Christmas festivities for the whole school community! I cannot wait for Mehr’s next adventure”
Of baubles and jingly bells
LUCY, MUM TO EMMIE
“I’m looking forward to decorating the tree with Emmie. I bought some baubles last year that I knew she’d love – jingly bells and felt animals. This year I’m going to start a new tradition: crafting a tree decoration as well as buying a new one together every year. It would be lovely to see our collection grow and remember the things she liked each year. Her talking has just started to really take off, and we can’t wait to see her narrate her own version of this special experience”
Of love packaged in a Christmas card
PAVI, DAD TO LUCA
“We’re looking forward to creating our home-made Christmas cards, featuring Luca. Last year we cut out red and green cardboard to make cards shaped as Christmas trees, with a picture of Luca in his festive outfit on the outside and an outline of his hand (instead of a signature!) on the inside – this was a great treat for family members. This year we’ll be hand-crafting some cards again, showing Luca wearing his Christmas jumper. In future years, we hope Luca will join in the fun by colouring the cards himself and eventually writing his own messages inside!”
Of Christmas sunshine – yes really!
DAVID, DAD TO MILA
“Our family has a different kind of Christmas – on the beach back home in New Zealand! We are looking forward to introducing our little one to a kiwi Christmas on the beach with family and friends. Pōhutukawa trees, sand, sunshine and the glistening seaside are all things we can not wait to experience with Mila!”
Of the delightful wonders of simple things
MALAIKA AND GIANLUCA, MUM AND DAD TO NERI
This is Neri’s first Christmas, and after years of totally neglecting Christmas traditions, we have started one again this year. We actually don’t have a Christmas tree, but instead we are using our trusty old house plant (a Ficus Benjamina, which is big enough to serve as a home-grown Christmas tree!). We’d like to teach kids about being green and respecting the environment. We visited our local DIY shop and bought an array of lights and colourful balls. Neri loves switching the lights on our tree on and off – this is Christmas at its best for him. He is delighted, and we are too – what more could we want?? We are sure we’ll have many more of such ‘home-made’ Christmas moments in the coming years”
If you still need more than just the ‘feel good’ factor to believe in the power of family traditions, there is fascinating research (borne out of research into family rituals) that demonstrates a link between the extent to which children know about their family history, and higher self esteem, sense of control over their lives and belief in the successful functioning of their families. Read more here.