I looked around for inspiration on new traditions that we could incorporate and I thought I would share a few and hopefully you can share some of your family traditions as well!
Instead of a standard advent calendar we created a "Christmas of Good Deeds Countdown". Each of my older boys had 24 strips of paper and a Christmas Tree cutout. On each of the links we wrote down a good deed for the day. My 4 year old kept it simple, give someone a big hug, be a helper around the house, etc while my 11 year-old came up with ideas like donating some of his toys to charity, teaching his brother something new and making breakfast in bed (my favorite). Each day they are so excited about seeing what their good deed will be that they have seemed to forgotten that it is also a countdown to Christmas Day!
This year on the night that we set up our Christmas Tree, we are going to lay by the tree huddled in blankets and read Christmas stories by the fire (even though it is still in the 70's in San Diego).
We adopted-a-family through our church that lost their home in the fires. The best way to teach our kids to be generous and giving is by modeling it. We have had a great time shopping for things to give to boys who are around their same age.
Please feel free to post a comment to share some of your family traditions!