Baby’s First Holiday
Simple ideas for celebrating and commemorating the occasion, even if you’re sleep-deprived enough to skip the turkey and order a pizza instead.
So I had this great idea for yet another holiday-themed column: I’d write one chock-full of awesome, creative ideas for commemorating baby’s first Christmas and Hanukkah.
Except I actually didn’t HAVE any awesome, creative ideas. With two babies born in the early fall, our first Decembers with them are a blur, with Christmas coming right as we hit the infernal wall of sleep deprivation. I am pretty sure we managed to put up a tree. We got some truly terrible photos taken with Santa. We drove to see family. People held the baby while I practiced sleeping with my eyes open. My mom got Baby’s First Christmas bibs at Target, and we did get a couple adorable dated Christmas ornaments to get misty-eyed and sentimental over — but even these are totally thanks to friends, family and even BLOG READERS, who were way more on top of the occasion than we were.
(Noah and Ezra DID at one point wear obnoxiously adorable matching holiday sweaters, but Ezra threw up on his right after breakfast. My tip: BUY A BACKUP.)
Basically, if it were up to me, I probably would still be scouring ornament discount racks for the 2008 Baby’s First Christmas ornament that I forgot to buy, or cheat by getting something custom-backdated on Etsy.
Luckily, AlphaMom has a team of bloggers who excel at just this very thing, so I am thrilled to present a Bounce Back collaboration with the ladies of Once Upon a Holiday, as they share their Baby’s First Holiday stories…and ideas for how they might do it if they had the chance to do all over again.
Our family has had a fun tradition we do when one of our three babies has been born. We introduce them to the big man in red, Santa! We get dressed up, hit the mall, and stand in line. We love to see these photos and how each of our kids are growing up, (and somehow Santa changes a little each time too!).
Here we are with Santa saying “candy canes” to the camera!
Ellen Luckett Baker:
Since both of my children were born in December, I celebrated their first Christmas by nursing around the clock and waiting for my uterus to shrink back to its normal size! Those were the days. But now that I’ve had five years since my last child to catch up, I think it would be nice to make handmade baby shoes for the tree. Baby could wear the shoes on Christmas Eve, then you could hang them on the tree. There
re many tutorials available online for baby shoes, including this one from Heather Bailey and this Mary Jane version from Martha Stewart.
I think it would be sweet to cross stitch or embroider the baby’s name or first initial on the booties. Or you could buy these adorable miniature-sized shoes, which are just right for hanging on the tree.
(If you make shoes from felt, be sure to use a high-quality wool or wool blend and store it in an airtight container after the holidays.)
I celebrated my first Christmas when I was twenty-four. Odd, I know but I was raised in a household that believed Christmas was a heathen holiday. I’d explain more on that but it might turn into a novel. Anyway, I was dating my husband at the time and we thought it would be fun to do a little photo session with myself and some Christmas lights for my first Christmas card. I remember I wore this little white baby doll dress (as was the fashion back in the 90’s) and some big clunky working man boots. I thought I was the height of fashion. We dangled Christmas lights in my hair and my professional photographer boyfriend made them all blurry and pretty with some fancy filter on his camera lens. It was all very romantic from my point of view. Then we printed them and slapped them on some cards. I wrote by hand on each one “Baby’s First Christmas” because it was my first Christmas after all and I was somebody’s baby. It seemed really funny and cute at the time but I think all my friends thought it confusing and lame.
When my baby had her first Christmas, we used a picture of her on the beach for her first Christmas card. I do have a photo of her playing in Christmas lights but I did NOT put that one on my card because I didn’t want anyone to remember my silly first Christmas incident.
I went to one of those paint your own pottery places and had my baby son’s footprint put on half a dozen coffee mugs which was then gifted to grandparents, godparents, etc. Our theme was snowflakes. Then we had some corny saying. Everyone loved it. So much so that no one uses their coffee mug in fear of it breaking.
I do love the idea of making (or buying) a special stocking and on the back in fabric marker, or on a slip of paper for the inside writing a special memory from their first Christmas. My mom had a lady hand knit a special stocking for each of my children’s first Christmas.
The best advice I got for celebrating a baby’s first Christmas — was that they won’t know if they don’t get any presents. This reminded us to not go overboard!