Saturday, November 8, 2008

In the making...

My project for the next week or so is making templates for a Christmas Journal. I am thinking of making a digital book of my 25 days of Christmas. Then I thought that it would be so cool to make it available for everyone. Imagine you can download the templates and just add your pictures and journaling and either print it off on paper or upload it to shutterfly and print a beautiful book of your Christmas 2008 like my wedding book.

The only difference is that each and every element will be designed by myself. You can see the front page here.

I need your help. I will give away a goodie box of Christmas stuff by Making memories. All I need to know is what activities to do you do in December to get ready for Christmas. I want to make a page for each activity + space for pictures.

Leave me a comment and I will draw a name on Monday or Tuesday.
Thanks a million


pink said...

We do a variety of things. One we never miss is baking Christmas cut out cookies and frosting them. I'm not sure if they like making them or frosting them the most. :)

I adore getting out my Christmas CD's and hearing our favorites! Nothing says Christmas is coming like some beautiful music.

We also love looking at old holiday photos, so I have an album that is just Christmas photos...about 5 to 10 pages each year, so you can go through it fairly quickly.

I can't forget the holiday photo. Before digital we'd take a roll of film and before it was over we were taking crazy photos with kids standing on their heads and such. :) Now we take 6 or so...with digital you can tell which ones turn out and don't feel like you have to keep taking them.

And of course we always watch our holiday movies. Ever since the boys were little (they are almost grown and out of the house now) I buy one new movie each year. Between Thanksgiving and Christmas we watch every single one of them. At some point on Thanksgiving weekend (American) we have a Christmas movie marathon...with lots of popcorn!

A tradition we have is that I buy each boy an ornament each year. It may have to do with an activity they participate in at school or a trip we've taken...or one with their photo from that year. When they get married, they will receive their ornament box.

Hmmm...we have more traditions than I realized! Thanks for getting me thinking. :)

lukabella said...

We make gingerbread houses. jenn

Zarah said...

Traditional baking of saffron rolls and ginger snaps - very important. This happens while we drink gl├╝hwein and listen to X-mas carols.

That's our most important tradition, by far! :D

Linh Chin-Lai said...

Decorate the house!

Anonymous said...

This idea sounds great!! I cant wait to see your beautiful creation.

We bake cookies, make gingerbread houses, go out to a tree farm to buy a real tree, decorate the tree, hang lights outside, buy christmas pajamas for the kids to wear, sing with holiday music, shoot a christmas picture for tthe card, write out cards, talk about special ornaments as we hang them on the tree, wrap presents, make santas list, leave cookies and milk for santa and of course a carrot for the reindeer.

Kris said...

woops..I did not mean to leave an anonymous comment above.....
we also sing in christmas shows, decorate the house. The kids each get a little tree for their bedroom that they decorate and they love to keep the lights on the tree when they fall asleep -- the love this tradition (this is a favorite as well as my youngest loves to leave the carrot as I mentioned above for Santas reindeer...that makes me laugh each year!!!!!!!!!!!

Desia said...

-Watching "It's a Wonderful Life."
-Decorating the tree, of course.
-A sleigh ride, when possible.
-Driving to see the different Christmas lights and decorations.
-Going to hear the Christmas Choir at church.
-Getting too many Starbucks'special Christmas Drinks, I think it was something Candy Cane-ish last year?
-Baking Ginger Sparklers.
-Putting toghether and decorating the store-bought Gingerbread house.
-Setting the special Christmas dinner table.
-Going to the school's Christmas Concert, when kids were still in school.
-My favourite activity: drinking eggnog!

MandieGirl said...

*Watch the movie Elf
*Drive around to look at Christmas lights and decorations
*Make lists of loved ones for gifts and cards
*Drink EggNog
*Eat yummaliscious chocolate

Melissa Salomon said...

We decorate after my son's birthday on December 4 and then play Christmas music and enjoy evenings playing music, singing, listening to my son play the guitar....baking.....lots of baking and meal planning for the special meals during Christmas week especially Christmas eve.

Juel said...

Baking Red Velvet cakes for special people we love.

Jan said...

Hi, Wilna! We also do many of those listed above...(but, really, can you have TOO many starbucks special Christmas drinks?) :)

We do many of the things already listed. And we also:

.attend a Christmas concert by the local chamber choir/chamber orchestra
.make caramel corn
.go to Christmas Eve service
.light all our Christmas candles
.have a big family meal
.hang stockings
.string popcorn and cranberries for the tree
.watch past family holiday videos

Fun fun! ;)

Lisa J. said...

Listening to Christmas music, attending Christmas programs, and burning holiday candles.

Alicia in Salem said...

We have started taking a vacation the first or second week of December. Twice we have been to Disney World, and this year we are going to Las Vegas. It really puts you in the mood when you see how other places celebrate the season. It also makes you appreciate your own traditions even more. My husband always hangs the outside lights before we leave, and then we get to come home to the house being all lit up.

Another tradition is to visit this special Christmas shop that also serves high tea. Makes for a special shopping day.

The best tradition of all, though, is to save one last thing to shop for on Christmas Eve day. It's so much fun to be out there in the frenzy, and you can save alot of money doing it because the stores have already marked things down for the day after Christmas sales. Woohoo! Frenzy AND saving money!

Alicia in Salem, Oregon

Suzanne said...

Decorating the tree is my favourite Christmas activity. We do it as a family on December 1st. The kids take turns each year at putting the star on the top of the tree.

caro said...

oh dear, I just wrote my longest comment ever, about our summer Christmas traditions & it's vanished.

Wilna, that RED on your album is breathtaking, please tell me it's pigment name?
And of course, I LOVE the idea of the templates!!!!!!!!

Wunderbar! Frohes Fest, Gelukkige Kersfees, Merry Christmas. XXxx. C.

Tessa said...

This year cleaning and decorating the house and making just a few decoration will be enoug for me having a tiny one in my tummy I'm all out of energy but I'm soo looking forward to christmast preparations this year too..

Lauren in SA said...

Hi Wilna!

our traditional christmas was held in a place called Herold's bay in South AFrica. it's near George. what a great palce! my gran's family bought a bunch of plots there in the 1910's and now they've all been passed down to the next generations and we all still go there over christmas holidays. a graet big fmaily christmas lunch on Christmas day is our long stading tradition. before that my mom and i used to get ready for the holidays by baking christmas cut out "soetkoekies" and making fudge and rusks for our four week vacation at the beach. we spend days together doing this before the hoidays!!! she has been very ill with cancer for the last 2 years though and our Lord took her home this year in September. even though she is gone - i will be carrying on this tradition alone this year. by this time next year i will have an 8 month old to carry the tradition down to!!! what great ideas you have - keep them rolling on girl!

Lauren in SA

Jessica Turner said...

*christmas stockings from st. nick *trimming the tree *sitting on Santa's lap *watching Elf *baking cookies *wrapping gifts *Christmas dinner *going look at lights *hot chocolate with candy canes *church

Kathrine said...

- bake cookies
- make christmas decorations
- buy/make/wrap presents
- make/send christmas cards
- decorate the house little by little
- find the perfect/decorate the tree
- drink lots of spicy tea
- open christmas calendar
- enjoy the moments, at least we try :)

Anonymous said...

I have always gone out with a girlfriend and gone shopping with her one night usally after work. It is a major event with both of our list of what we have to get and then find some little thing we treat ourselves to. It usally is the first week of December but I think a shopping page would be part of my book as we all have our favorite stores we go to.
P.S. loving your projects with 30 days 30 projects.


Anonymous said...

The most important thing for us is all the Christmas cookies that my dear Mom and Mom-in-Law make! And we enjoy them right into January and even sometimes February.
And even though I complain about it most of the time, I actually enjoy searching for "just a little something" as Christmas presents, as we prefer not giving expensive gifts for Christmas.
I have fond memories of celebrating Christmas down in Plett (in the caravan park) when I grew up!
Love - ingrid

8thgypsy said...

So many things that it is hard to pick just one - so I won't!

make a gingerbread house
decorate a tree outside for the birds
listen to the christmas album by the Muppets and John Denver
create a Christmas journal

Colleen said...

We watch our favorite Christmas movie-Christmas Vacation. I find a new ornament for each family member-which relates to something unique to them for the year. We decorate the tree and house. My favorite thing to do is sit in the dark each morning, with a warm cup of coffee with only the glow of the tree lights-and think about what I am thankful for. I love sending and receiving Christmas cards and buying the new stamps. I pull out the Christmas post it-notes and put a Christmas countdown on the desktop of my computer. I scrapbook last years Christmas photos. A new puzzle makes it way out to the table and we bring up games. The candlelight service at church on Christmas Eve is a favorite. Stuff the homemade Advent calendars-with candy and notes for activities to do together. A sparkle tour of all the houses and the Enchanted Forest.
I love Christmas-baking and having friends and family in.
Just writing this put me in the Christmas mood. I love shopping for gifts and watching people open their gifts. Christmas Eve is my favorite day.

Lisa-Kate said...

It always seems that we start to prepare for Christmas a little too late because we always run out of time. I usually let everything fall into place with our main focus on the reason for the season, our savior Jesus Christ :)

Sophia said...

Bake Christmas cookies with the kids.

Make an advent calendar for the girls to countdown to Christmas.

Decorate the house.

Make pretty boxes to pack the gifts into.

Make yummy cards.

Hope this helps you...

Virginia said...

I just got done teaching a class on our holiday traditions! Here are some I included in my album:

-buying Christmas pjs with my aunt and sister
-decorating the tree the day after Thanksgiving
-Stocking stuffer shopping with my best friend
-Reading a different Christmas story book to my kids each night before bedtime
-lighting the Advent candles
-candlelight service at our church on Christmas Eve
-Christmas Eve party at my grandma's
-wrapping gifts
-doing a shoebox for Operation Christmas Child

MichelleJ said...

Many of our family traditions have been named, but my favorites are:
-Purchasing a special ornament every year - the girls are old enough to choose their own.
-Baking traditional cookies.
- Putting the shoes out (usually under the Christmas tree that has only been lit and no ornaments yet)for St. Nicholas on Dec 5 and watching the girls discover oranges, nuts and a bit of chocolate on Dec 6 morning.
- Hanging stockings.
-Making homemade decorations (angel, star rings... )
-singing carols all season long with my girls
-making gingerbread houses, and then eating them!
-building the Lego Christmas village under the tree (no needles on the train tracks, difficult for the cats to destroy, and OH so fun to play with).
-opening advent calendar windows
-making gifts for friends.
- reading different Christmas Themed & nativity story books with the girls every night before bed.

(ok, so it's hard to pick)

beautiful page you have posted.

Anonymous said...

we do a christmas photo, and alot of "stopping by" families houses.

Laura Solomon said...

Take the photo for the Holiday card, donate anything we can to people who are less fortunate, bakebakebake...

steph said...

First let me start by saying thank you for all of the scripture you post on your blog. You are such an inspiration and an encouragement to me!

This year's Christmas will be a little different than years past because my husband is in Iraq. I know I will continue our usual traditions like rereading the Christmas story, lots and lots of baking cookies and candies and breads for friends and neighbors, and getting a Christmas tree.

I will have to prepare for Christmas a little early this year so that my husband will get his Christmas package on time!

almadr said...

I love making Christmas decorations and cards and wrapping up gifts - all these while listening to carols. And of course decorating a Christmas tree - but this is only on Christmas Eve, because in Poland we do it just before Christmas.
can't wait to see more of your album ;-)

heather j. said...

We do many of the things already listed as well. another one we do is buy a live tree with a root bal and then after Christmas it gets planted in our yard. Each year we decorate our old Christmas trees in the yrad with lights as well. We also open one gift on Christmas Eve after our traditional Christmas Eve dinner.

Jan Connair said...

We begin the season by driving out to a local tree farm and cutting down our own Christmas tree every year.

I always make cinnamon ribbon loaf for our Christmas Day breakfast.

On Christmas Eve we have a little dinner party just for our immediate family. I buy Christmas crackers so we can pop them open and tell each other the silly jokes inside.

My favorite thing to do at Christmas time is to attend the very late night mass on Christmas Eve. My husband and I sing now with the church choir, and it makes the whole holiday so much more mysterious and meaningful somehow.

Lynn said...

We do many things -

bake cookies
watch the old Bass Rankin holiday movies (The Year w/o a Santa Claus, Rudolph, etc)
hang up Christmas cards as they arrive on the closet doors
take a picture with Santa (boys, if you don't do it, there won't be a Christmas - gotta have something to scrapbook!)

I think the one unique tradition to my little family is that on the night we decorate the tree, we order pizza and eat in front of the tree. My husband and I get a really nice bottle of Merlot. He and I have been doing this since we got our first tree back in 1992. The kids are just now getting old enough to join us, which is fun, too.

g said...

the Christmas lights go up outside during the day on Thanksgiving, while I cook, & then and get turned on after dinner in the evening Thanksgiving day- it's our official Holiday season kick off.

The Christmas music is on all day everyday from Thanksgiving thru Christmas!

Of course, setting up the tree & Creche & indoor decorations are important traditions!

We take a family portrait of ourselves about a week or so after Thanksgiving, once the tree is up, so I can include them in/on cards.

Baking a ton of cookies & sharing with neighbors (even ones we don't know!), a visit to see Santa & making/sending cards are also some of our standard traditions!

linda said...

We usually have the end of year concert from school, putting up the tree on teh 1st, baking, going to the beach, wrapping presents.
And going to carols by candlelight, watching the Christams light decorations in the suburbs

Linda said...

boy oh boy!! this is my first Christmas close to family in so long, but this is the way things are going to be this year...

1. My mother in law makes all of the decorations for the house (all from scratch)
2. right after Thanksgiving we decorate the tree, and the house.
3. get all of the gifts under the tree (matching paper of course)
4. We all get together at my inlaws house for Christmas Dinner, and stay up until midnight to open our gifts.

that is our perfect Christmas, but since we are a Military family when we are a way my hubby and I get the house ready ourselves. We ussualy get all the gifts under the tree Christmas night so when the girls wake up their gifts are there.

3QTGUYS said...

buy new Christmas pajamas
drink hot chocolate
Make chocolate dipped pretzels
Bake cookies
Make gifts for the secretaries at my hubby's office
christmas photos with all of the grandkids
our Hanging of the Greens service at church

Stay funny said...

Decorate the house, make handmade cookies and cards to send to familly and friends!

DeAnna said...

I have a very large Dickens Christmas Village that my mother in law passed down to my husband and I. I love it. It takes me about 18 hours to set the whole thing up. I take 2 days and set that up. Usually early in November so we can enjoy it longer! Then the weekend of Thanksgiving we get our tree and decorate the entire house. We make a special dinner and turn our house into a Christmas workshop. I love it.

Christmas Eve I make Chocolate gravy over toast, fix cookies for Santa and get ready for Christmas morning!

kuhlcy said...

1. the beach boys christmas album
2. night walks to see the lights
3. school christmas pagents
4. rearranging furniture to accomidate our tree!

cece k.

BishopsMommie said...

Oh we decorate usually a few days after Thanksgiving, then we will start new traditions because now that he is old enough maybe we will start by making cookies this year.

BishopsMommie said...

decorating the house and making cookies

Scrapping4fun said...

We always go into our local city on Christmas Eve to soak up the Xmas atmosphere, see the lights etc and get into the Xmas spirit.

Jennifer (gojenlaw) said...

It is so nice of you give away such nice goodies. I decorate my house, make christmas cards and goodies. I love the holiday season esp. getting ready for them.

Trinka said...

We go as a family to Holiday in the Park at six flags over texas. It is fun for the whole family and we love all the Christmas goodies~

Anonymous said...

we do a few too, come to think of it...and here I was going to put ONE thing.

We or rather I get stollen every year that is such a favourite for me.
bake cookies and ice them
I watch any christmasy type movie with my little girl I just so love the Christmasy feel it is my absolute FAVOURITE holiday and I like the thought that it is a happy time for lots of people.
The other thing is I collect Christmas decorations even the ones my 4 year old makes. Lots of friends have given me special Christmas decorations as gifts as they know I collect them so a lot of the decorations have a special memory or person attached to them My best is a gold angel blowing a kiss that I bought at the St Pauls Cathedral in London in memory of my Dad and that is the most special of all of the decorations and takes pride of place at the top of the tree.

xxx Boo

Anonymous said...

well this is not mine but I want to tell you because it is so special.
A friend of mine in Natal (South Africa) and her sister just across the road decorate their entire gardens and houses etc, in the most beautiful lights, sleights, reindeer, giant lollipos etcetera and then ask all those that stop by (and people make a point of going to see as it is like Christmas fairlyland at night) to donate something which they in turn pass on to the SPCA/charity in SA.
So big round of applause to them for doing something so nice at this time of the year.


Toni Wever said...

Celebrating Jesus' birthday, baking, decorating, shopping, wrapping presents and enjoying the little moments spent with family and friends. This year will be extra special as its the first with our new daughter.

Kataroo said...

you are sooo generous!!

snowmen building
putting cookies out for santa, writing him a letter

Melanie B said...

as Daddy is away we have to wait until he gets back as one of our traditions is putting up the tree, lots of family time, cooking, making little gifts for special people whether it be cooking, doing something special for someone, shopping, swimming, singing lots of carols & also remembering the reason for the season......Jesus. I think your idea is fantastic. Thanks Mel xx

Amber said...

This is kindof what my December looks like...decorating the tree, baking homemade goodies, wrapping presents prettily (this is usually a huge deal/a whole day!), lazy nights sipping hot cocoa and watching a movie, and a couple days of last minute "secret shopping" for my husband...hehe. This is such an AWESOME idea. You are the best! =D!

Tammy W said...

One of my favorite activities is when the kids and I make new orniments for the tree. We also make a few to give to our friends. I like them much more than I like the store bought ones.

We also spend a part of a day, before Christmas, picking out the scrapbooking supplies that I will use for our Christmas pages. That way they are part of the process and the way I photograph events can compliment the theme and colors we have choosen.

Cherri said...

Getting ready for Christmas always involves going to a local tree farm and picking the 'perfect' tree for us. We tend to lean more towards the trees that other may not pick right away. We want to make them feel special. We always trim the tree with Christmas music playing and Russian Tea brewing on the stove. It feels the house with an awesome aroma that makes it feel like Christmas. I love this time of year.

mary said...

we take the ferry from Marin county into San Francisco with friends and just walk around the city enjoying the decorations/lights. It's a great night of friendship!
This Dec. will be our 10th year.

kareng said...

We decorate the tree, go Christmas tree viewing, attended Church services, light an Advent candle each evening while reading a story out of the Bible, use a countdown box for each child to open a note from Mom and Dad...each has something to do, something to eat or something to pray for...sitting in the dark looking at the Christmas tree while listening to Christmas music and chatting or playing games.
Guess those are the ones I can think of at the top of my head.
Karen G

Lol said...

Making cards
Going to the farm shop to choose a tree
Decorating the tree
Practising songs for the Christmas services
Carolling and playing instruments around the village
Ladies' carols by candlelight evening
Writing cards
Christmas shopping

jill marie barrett said...

we always do a family picture. and we go shopping and lunch together. there is always some type of activity, like playing frisby, or flying remote controlled plaines...

Vivian said...

One of my favorite holiday traditions (for which I always have a hard time with finding appropriate tags or pre-printed notes) is watching my little ones' musical performances at school and church. When they're in the spirit, the rest of the family is! Love your ideas, work and inspiration!


Loretta said...

We always play in the snow as a family. Whether it is making snow angels, snowmen or having a snowball fight we always have a great time. The best part is taking off all of the snowpants and mittens and warming up with a cup of hot cocoa. :-)

Victoria S. said...

We make decorated sugar cookies.
We donate as many Operation Christmas child boxes as we possibly can.
This year we want to give a goat to a poor family through World Vision instead of so many gifts to each other.
We listen to Chrismas music and watch tons of favorite Chrismas movies as a family that we have taped thru the years.
We love the scents of Christmas.
We play in the snow if there is any.
We go to our schools' Christmas program.
We try to stay away from the malls - too crazy and ruins the good mood.
We try to make some of our gifts - whether it is baked goods or cards or ornaments.
I do buy at least one new ornament for each child per year to give them a good start when they leave home for their own tree.

Anonymous said...

Greetings Wilna!
A few of the things that come to mind and are special that we do in December are:
~Make cut out Christmas cookies
~Put candle lights in all the windows of our home
~Start making Christmas cards and fill them with school pictures
~Hang an evergreen wreath on the front door
Blessings to you and yours!
~Tammy in Michigan

Wendi said...

We do many of the same things mentioned here. I guess the only extra thing that stands out to me is our annual shopping trip to buy items to fill the Operation Christmas Child shoe box ministry. This has become an increasingly big deal as our family tries to get beyond Santa and Ho Ho Ho to the real meaning of Christmas.
Can't wait to see the templates! The cover is gorgeous!!!

Lynette C said...

1. Shopping
2. Baking cookie and Brownies
3. decorate Ginger Bread House
4. Christmas Tree Decorating
5. Picture with Santa
6. Christmas in the Park (a San Jose, CA tradition)
7. An of course wrapping up Christmas presents

Joywlee said...

We like to decorate the tree, participate in Operation Christmas child, watch the Nutcracker ballet, shop and wrap gifts, go to Bethlehem AD (a church in Redwood City, CA recreates Bethlehem on the day Christ was born), visit neighborhoods with lots of Christmas lights, family get-togethers, and reading through "What God Wants for Christmas".

Tricia Wilson said...

I make a Christmas card list and a master Christmas shopping list for the people I buy for. I also make lots of shopping lists. Can you tell that I like lists?

Roxanne said...

It's amazing how many new traditions get started when you have a young family! I think my kids would say: making a gingerbread house, sledding, hot chocolate, movies, decorating the tree, making decorations for the windows and tree, admiring the Christmas lights, making cookies and listening to A LOT of Christmas music. My favourite tradition has been to visit our provincial legislature building the day (or a few days) before magical!

Anonymous said...

All the girls (aunts, grandma, cousins) get together for a cookie baking day. We each make dough for a couple kinds of cookies and then bake all day long. It's a lot of fun. Becca :)

Superwoman Scrapper said...

Everyone has a decorating the tree day, putting lights up on the house, baking cookies and wrapping presents. We tend to add an evening of sprinkling fairy dust for the reindeers to find our house on Christmas Eve.

schmidthouse said...

I set up my nativity set...i have found the cutest one and it even has an inn keeper! I also have a snowman collection that parades up the stairwell among other decorations to convert our house to a cozy festive feel. One of my other favorites is my wooden 3-D sign that says "BELIEVE.. I usually rewatch the old Christmas movies, find new ones to see, get involved with Operation Shoebox in one form or another, and I have to do something crafty!!! There is so much to do to help make it a time of worship and celebration!

mandi said...

Oh, I love it! I can't wait to see it all finished. I'll be saving my pennies so I can get me one! I have loved your work since that first valentine page in CK. Thanks for inspiring me.

glee said...

Every year i make a photo ornament of each of my 2 children. It's really fun to see them go up on the tree each year.

Wrapping presents

Making the christmas card (photoshop)

Angels everywhere

i collect Christmas stockings so finding a new one is so much fun

And we always go see the Living Nativity at a nearby church

and don't forget a visit to Santa!!
love your work thanks for everything.

Bethany said...

So many fun activities happen in December...we never miss dedicating one evening to driving around listening to Christmas music & looking at Christmas light displays. Also an annual wreath making party with friends, followed by a meal of homemade soups, cheese & bread to warm our fingers & toes. Delish!