This Christmas I wanted to share with you a little window into a few amazing moms holiday seasons. Feature some great moms for all the holiday joy they have experienced and bring each and every year! If you are interested in being involved in a mumfection mom of the week please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I would love to set you up.
1. Christmas Traditions Growing Up
My family has always attended church at Christmas time. When I was very young we went on Christmas day. Then when I was old enough we went to midnight mass. I really enjoyed the mystery and magic of attending mass at nighttime. It was exciting to be at church so late, sing Top of the Pops Anglican Christmas songs and hold candles together. When I was in middle school I got to be an acolyte during the midnight mass under the tropical night skies of Manila. No matter where we were living in the world, we went to church. Some of the most memorable locations for me were churches in Kingston (Ontario), Baghdad, Manila, Tokyo and Barbados.
2. Traditions We Have Started Europeans rock the Christmas traditions.
I love watching Rick Steves’ special show about Christmas traditions in Europe. Based on influences from European friends and families who have had children in my Montessori classes, I’ve been introducing North European traditions into our household. We visit St. Nicholas at Amsterdam Greenhouses in Pitt Meadows, put out a shoe on December 5th for St. Nicholas and celebrate Santa Lucia. Last year was our first year to do Santa Lucia – although I have done it previously in my classroom. It was magical!
3. Number one thing I can’t stand about Christmas
Hands down it’s putting the Christmas decorations away. Of course I don’t want to put them away but also it’s SO much work. I amassed most of my decorations when I was single. We have about seven boxes of them. (I pack them well so that does take up a bit of space in the boxes.) Could a Christmas fairy come to my house this year to put them all away?
4. What would I change about last year?
I would have made my Christmas cards earlier. Of course I’m still working out my plans and friends have already posted photos of their finished result. Hashtag #ah!?
5. Do I over buy compared to others?
We operate our household on a very tight budget. We have a set budget to spend on gifts and my shopping can’t go over the set limits. It might sound shocking but we only get one gift for our twins. Sometimes it’s shared. They get gifts from close relations and some friends and that works out to enough for them. All year they tell me about the toys they want based on TV commercials. I tell them to add it to the list (for their birthday or later for Christmas). Of course none of these toys end up under the tree. They are happy and very blessed to receive what they do thanks to the generosity of others.
6. What do I love to do?
I’ve enjoyed different traditions in the city. I don’t do each of them every year but they’re all special. Over the years I’ve enjoyed watching the carol ships from our Yaletown flat where we used to live; going on a carol ship; seeing It’s a Wonderful Life on Granville Island; attending a Christmas show at the Evergreen Cultural Center; visiting with St. Nicholas at Amsterdam Greenhouses; going on the Stanley Park Christmas train; and, driving around neighbourhoods looking at the lights.
7. What do we serve in our Christmas feast and what does everyone love?
During my adult life I’ve celebrated Christmas in something like 21 homes. (I’m sure I’ve missed a few.) I’m often the guest but I also have the opportunity to help prepare the meal or be in charge of the turkey. Christmas meal is usually a cooperative affair. I’m most known for sourcing out interesting deli and gourmet food items to bring to the meal like a yummy artisan bread, spread or dessert. In my family the most popular dish would be the cabbage rolls that we eat for Ukrainian Christmas in early January. I made a batch the other night. Gosh it takes a long time but the results are worth the effort.
8. What would I want for Christmas?
I know I’m supposed to focus on an item not some ideal. (Thanks for offering this dream question here.) It’s linked to all kinds of clichés about people who wear them but I’d like a fitted, modern Barbour jacket in black. Please and thank you!
9. What dream item would I get for my four year olds?
A years worth of tuition for preschool would be swell. It could be just for 2 or 3 half days a week as we also attend Strong Start and do our own thing at home.
10. What is a warm and fuzzy Christmas memory.
There are SO many from before and after my children were born. The Christmas in Barbados that I spent with the first grandchild in my family (who was 2 months and had traveled from Vancouver) was super sweet. I was living in Asia at the time and counted the days to meet her. (This included two days of traveling to get to Barbados.)