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Handmade Christmas_ Part 1

Its December and the countdown to Christmas is on! My children are the perfect age to pull out all the stops for Christmas cheer. I want to make this time of year super special for them, I love seeing their eyes light up and sparkle when we bring out something familiar from years past or introduce a new tradition. In usual farm fashion I want to keep things simple on our task list and our budget but still make it feel big for the kids. Being a planner and a list maker I’ve created this three part series on Budget Friendly Christmas Cheer:

1.) Celebrating the holidays with Community

2.) Simple Handmade Christmas Decorations

3.) Homemade Cookie Recipe Hacks

Each week as we countdown to Christmas I will touch on one part of this series. This week let’s talk about celebrating with your community! There is a lot of free holiday events all around from library functions, nativity scenes, tree lightings and more so my first recommendation is to identify what stage your children are in, what are their interests and prioritize events based on this. If you have a large family with multiple interests its ok to split up and dedicate different events for each child. That’s what I did this year.

My 5-year-old KC is known as Mr. Christmas around our house. He is the first one to turn on the Christmas lights in the morning and fills his days with cookie baking and card making. The simple joys of Christmas give him such a light for the season. It was a no brainer that the parade and tree lighting in Hornell, NY would be his event of choice this year. Instead of bringing the whole family, I made it a special date with just myself, KC and baby River. We met some friends and had so much fun he is still talking about it weeks later. For my 7-year-old Kedric, he is less dazzled by the sparkle of Christmas and more into the giving spirit. So together we have been planning out and creating special gifts for friends and family members. It is so humbling to see how someone so young can have such a big heart for those around him.

Lastly as a family we have some in house traditions. Some of these include taking a hike into our woods on the farm to find the perfect Christmas Tree, baking cookies all season long, reading holiday themed books after dinner each evening, crocheting matching hats and sweaters, creating natural decorations with dried oranges, spices, ribbons and evergreen boughs, and random acts of kindness. One of my favorite ways we celebrate is our annual neighborhood cookie walk (weather permitting). We bake a bunch of cookies, carefully package and deliver them to friends and neighbors it is so much fun!

Holiday traditions don’t have to involve elaborate gifts, credit card debt or any pressures of showing up to every single event. What matters most is that you spend time making memories with the ones you love. Remember to be present in the moment and soak in every second of this time that is so fleeting. What is your favorite holiday tradition?

P/S Family Photos are another one of my favorite things this time of year. We invite you all to join us for our annual Christmas on the Farm, Friday and Saturday Dec. 16 & 17 from 12-6pm. We offer free professional family photos in our barn, our farm store will be open and on Saturday SheBrews will be serving up fresh Hot Cocoa and treats in their food truck.

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