Holiday Linky Party: Kids and Christmas and The PERFECT Christmas Tree

Today's the final day of the  Home for the Holidays linky party! I hope you all have had a chance to either hop around to some of the other girls' blogs participating in the party or, even better, link up and share some of your projects and ideas!
At first, I really didn't know what I was going to share for this and, honestly, this season has been so full of things that we HAVE to do, we haven't made a TON of time to do things that we just LIKE to do so when we have a moment to squeeze in precious family time or traditions, we jump on it.
I feel like the Thanksgiving and Christmas Holidays are a great time, amongst others of course, to build new family traditions and take that extra time to spend with loved ones and other people in your life whom God has blessed you with.
We jumped on the opportunity this year to purchase our Christmas tree a bit earlier than we normally do and bought it only a couple of days after Thanksgiving.
Last year we trekked up to a tree farm and longed for the experience of cutting our own tree and all that comes along with the idea of that. It really wasn't a bad experience but kinda left us longing for more so we decided we'd still buy a live tree but, instead, we opted to shop a local market (grocer) instead of traveling to the tree farm.
We weren't disappointed. We got a live tree. We still put it on top of the car. The kids were still able to decorate{ish}. We were all happy in the end.
Especially this guy. This is Caleb, our eldest. This was his stance as he decided where to place the first ornament that he hung. As you can see, the ornaments are pretty spread out and random here. Which, well...I just couldn't let go untampered.
There's a bit of a story behind that.
Growing up, our trees were always perfect. Literally. Every ornament and light had strategic placement. Every piece of tinsel (which we actually didn't use often) hung PERFECTLY.
Fast forwarding 20 years later, I've carried many of those same Christmas tree "traditions" with me. When we first had kids it wasn't much of an issue. They were too young to have any desire to decorate the tree and that was fine with me. Eh, hm. Confession...
Of course, as they've grown older, they want to take part in the festivities. And why shouldn't they? Every child should have the memory of decorating their Christmas tree, right? Right?
So, this year, my hubby suggested letting them help. (Yes, that was a real conversation that we had that involved real emotion) We settled on letting them decorate the tree however they wanted and then later I would rearrange the tree to make it look the way I thought it should. That's a compromise, isn't it?
I know some of you out there are probably scoffing right now but this is real growth for me.
Some of you may wonder if our kids were hurt or scarred by my rearranging.
The answer is, not a bit...I totally involved them in that process too.
Let's just say I lent a gentle, guiding hand along the way.
See...they're still excited. Still happy to be helping. Still a sense of wonder and amazement.
This is what we ended up with after the kids helped.
I still can't figure out if he was looking at the tree in wonder or confusion. Ha!
What I took away from this:
I am learning how to slowly relinquish control in the area of decorating MY Christmas tree. Next year, they get their own to decorate however they please.
What our children took away from this experience:
Lots of laughs and fun as they "helped" hang their ornaments on the tree and a memory that will last a lifetime.
Wishing you a PERFECT Christmas! *wink*

Be sure to hope on over to This, That and Life's blog and link up your family traditions!


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