The Schwartz Family Traditions

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familytraditions

My Red Polka Dot PJ top: Click here to shop at Old Navy for $6.00

My Red Polka Dot PJ bottoms: Click here to shop at Old Navy for $17

Grayson’s PJ set: Click here to shop at Target for $12

The Schwartz Family Traditions:

  1. Decorating the Christmas Tree the day after Thanksgiving.
  2. Baking Chex mix and giving them to people I love.
  3. Buying new Christmas PJ’s and wearing them the whole month of December.
  4. Decorating the gingerbread house.
  5. Reading the Elf on the Shelf book the first night in December.
  6. Elf on the Shelf. Grayson loves his elf Blitz.
  7. Reading Christmas books before bed.
  8. Recording Christmas movies on TV and watching them during the week.
  9. Going to Opryland Hotel and seeing the Christmas lights.
  10. Baking Christmas cookies and letting Grayson decorate them.

What does Christmas mean to you?

Do you look forward to Christmas every year because you can make a huge list of things that you just have to have like makeup, sweaters, and electronics? You are scrambling around 3 days before Christmas to make sure you get the best gifts for everyone and you still wonder did I get enough or did they spend that much on me?

Doesn’t Christmas get a little crazy? I even watched a video on Black Friday of a woman yanking a toy out of a kid’s hand? Like really? Is this what Christmas is all about? Even my 3-year-old toddler, Grayson, tells me his toy list for Santa every day. He said this morning, “Mommy, can you call Santa for me and tell him I want a giggle wiggle?…Thanks.” Really dude? You are three and you are already starting to think this is the meaning of Christmas.

Christmas has to mean more. I didn’t get it fully until this Christmas. This is the first year my grandmother will not be able to hang her Christmas decor, make her famous German chocolate cake, and she won’t remember some of our names. My grandmother aka “Nanny” has been my best friend my whole life and she has just been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s/Dementia. After my grandfather died she would come stay with us and we always decorated the tree the day after Thanksgiving while listening to Christmas music. My grandmother was recently put into assisted living after being diagnosed with dementia/Alzheimer’s and this Christmas is so different for the entire family.

If you asked me 5 years ago what Christmas means to me I would have said it’s about the gifts. If you asked me now I would tell you it’s about family. Yes, my family and your family can get annoying. But the traditions, the laughs, and the famous German chocolate cake you share with them are so special and precious. You don’t really realize that you are making those traditions until they are gone.

I really want Grayson to understand that the meaning of Christmas is not about the gifts. It’s about being together. I hope these traditions can be passed on to his children so that a little bit of “Nanny” keeps going. I want him to give without receiving, bake cookies, decorate the gingerbread house, wear Christmas jammies, and decorate the tree. Just like I did with my sweet grandmother.

Merry Early Christmas to all from the Schwartz Family,

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