Ideas for baby's first Christmas
First time parents, even veteran parents, are sometimes at a loss as to what is appropriate, or even necessary, to do for their little one's first Christmas. Are gifts necessary? Should you let them struggle with opening them? Should there be a tree? Here are some ideas for baby's first Christmas that may remove a bit of the guesswork.
- Get a tree-for the pictures. It may be a pain to have to keep your child away from the temptation of the tree, but you really should not skip putting one up just because of the hassle. Put one up late, if you must, but put one up, nonetheless. It is fine to cut down on some of the decorations and definitely to only decorate the upper two-thirds of the tree. Take a lot of pictures of your baby around the tree, pulling at the (safe) ornaments and gazing up in amazement. You won't ever have this time again, so savor it!
- Purchase a "baby's first Christmas" ornament. As your child grows up, he or she will love this special, personal ornament. It doesn't necessarily have to be fancy, as long as it has his or her name on it, and the year. It is even better if you can find one that has a place for a picture.
- Keep the actual gifts to a minimum. It is more important that your child be allowed to open the gifts by himself. Let's face it: Older babies will be much more excited about playing with the wrapping paper and boxes than with the gifts! Newborns probably won't be able to open (or even remember) much, so it really is unnecessary to purchase many gifts. Go ahead and save your money; your child will soon be asking for expensive clothes, electronics and other costly presents as he grows up.
- Don't plan much. This is simply a suggestion, but it is perhaps one of the best ideas for baby's first Christmas. You are not going to want to have a lot of engagements on this particular day, because it will take away from the job of relaxing with your child as he or she experiences the first Christmas holiday. If you are at home, stay at home. Let your extended family come to you this year. You will truly appreciate the luxury of spending a large chunk of uninterrupted time with your baby.
- Take as many pictures as you (and your baby) can stand. A picture truly is worth a thousand words, and your child will love looking back at these pictures when he or she gets older. In today's digital age, it may be very tempting to download these pictures onto your computer and simply e-mail them to your address book (haven't we all gotten those post-holiday emails?). Don't do that! Take the time to have the pictures professionally printed. Some great ideas for baby's first Christmas are to make a holiday scrapbook, post-holiday thank you cards, or photo albums with these photos. Your child is too cute to stay stuck in your computer, right?
No matter what you decide to actually do for your little one's first Christmas, enjoy the time you have together. The years pass way too quickly, and it is the memory of this time that you will cherish. Neither you nor your child will likely remember a particular gift you opened this first year, but both of you will benefit from spending a wonderful day enjoying each other.