So a month or two ago I presented my family with an idea that had been stirring around in my brain for a while now. As I was clearing out all the things in my house, I thought, "As thrilling as it is to get nice gifts... I already have everything I need (and oh-so-much more!)." Now my family never goes too crazy at Christmas to begin with, to tell the truth. We don't try to outdo anyone or feel that children need mountains of toys in order to be happy. We have always exchanged names among the adults, and sometimes we even stuck to that. I love Christmas with my family! But I was feeling like that maybe we could do something more, something better.
So this year, the adults on my side of the family will not be exchanging gifts. (Bah, humbug... right?) But... we've decided to exchange letters instead. Each of us will write some sort of heartfelt thoughts to each other member of the family. These letters can be short or long, sentimental or funny, handwritten or typed. They can include drawings, photos, poetry, limericks, bad jokes... anything. Or just a quick "so glad you're in our family". As long as it is sincere.
We'll hand out these letters when we get together at Christmas (and mail them to my brother and nephew on missions). And I am stoked! Seriously.
We'll try different things other years, if all goes well. I would love for each year to end with us knowing each other a little better, and having some sort of family keepsake put together. Some other ideas: an ornament swap, put together a family cookbook, a service exchange, photographs for a family album, etc. I thought one year we could each write up our personal history, with their own information and memories, which we would copy and bind for each family group.
Zach and I wrote our first letters today (Thanks, Ollie!), and I have to say... I enjoyed it a little too much. I did a little rhyming today and ended up giggling like crazy.
If anyone has any other thoughts on creating family keepsakes/memories... I'm all ears. Just hit that comment button below. Thaaat's right... tap that little button and let's hear what you have to say!