A Simple Christmas Motto: Just Get By

frosty days

With Baby Niklas joining us this Christmas and requiring round-the-clock care and little opportunity for sleep, Martin and I have a new philosophy this holiday season: just get by.

In some ways, that approach seems like we’ve let our inner Grinch or Scrooge get the best of us. But it’s all about balance this year. We need to keep things quiet; of course, we also crave festivity, joy and cheer. Balance this year means saying no to many traditions while embracing those that are doable with a newborn and which will bring us together as a new family. Here’s our plan…

traditional christmas cookies

Things we’re skipping:

  • Traveling to visit family.
  • Worrying about gifts and shopping, other than a few small things.
  • Getting pictures with Santa.
  • Making cookies and treats like the Czech Christmas cookies Martin grew up eating.
  • Enjoying Advent calendars and candles.
  • Hanging stockings.
  • Attending parties, craft fairs, and festivals.
  • Drinking Glühwein!
  • Creating handmade gifts for people.
  • Sending holiday cards.

christmas in germany

(Christmas in Germany)

Things we might consider:

Things we will do:

  • Indulging in the box of Czech cookies Martin’s mother sent.
  • Enjoying the festive poinsettia and a few new Christmas cds we got.
  • Roasting chestnuts — Martin’s already stocked up!
  • Snuggling our new little one as the snow falls softly (or hard and fast, as happens often here in Montana!).
  • Giving ourselves the gift of time together.
  • Decorating a small, sentimental tree (we cannot wait to share our idea with you!).
  • Welcoming grandparents on Christmas day, who are kindly cooking Christmas dinner and snuggling Niklas while I catch a few naps!

christmas goose

(Christmas in Germany)

And with the late-night schedule Niklas is keeping these days, chances are good we’ll be up waiting for Santa Christmas Eve!

What traditions mean the most to you? What are the can’t-skip things you most enjoy?