Wanted: New Christmas Traditions

By Becky Hansen | Dec 17, 2010

This will be the first time since my daughters were born that I will not spend Christmas with them.  I've known this for a while, but the reality of it is starting to hit me now.  I will be in Wareham with my new husband, and they will be in New Jersey with their father and their cousins. 

When you have children, Christmas activity is focused on them.  The season becomes a flurry of shopping, school concerts, holiday parties, sleepovers and more shopping.  You hide gifts and wrap in secret, making sure that Santa's gift wrap is not the same as your gift wrap. You bake cookies with your children and pick out a present for Grandma with them. You stay up late Christmas Eve and load the presents under the tree.  You sip your coffee Christmas morning as shrieks of joy accompany their discovery of a fervently wished-for gift.

Once, when my girls were about 8 and 5, they woke us up at 3am on Christmas Day, thinking they had heard Santa and wanting to know if they could go downstairs and open their gifts. That's when the 6am rule came about. And even as they entered their teen years and beyond, they would always be up early on Christmas Day, anxious to start opening gifts and eat Swedish pancakes.  But now they are drinking coffee, too. And they have boyfriends.

This year everything has changed. The girls are away and I feel like I am re-inventing the holiday.  How do I go about that?  How do I go about creating new traditions with a new family structure in a new house in a new town?

So my question to the Wareham community is this:  What are the best holiday events in this area?  Are there organizations that can use volunteers on Christmas Day?  What can I do in our community as a foundation for my own Christmas traditions? What can I do this year that will be remembered and repeated year after year?  Life goes on, and I need to move forward with it.


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