first christmas

Celebrating Baby’s first Christmas

Baby in Santa suit for Christmas

Not every baby dresses as Santa for Christmas, but you can mark their first Christmas as something special in various ways…

Does your family do something special or different when there is a new baby experiencing Christmas for the first time?

It has become commonplace for retailers to offer stockings and baubles with ‘baby’s first Christmas’ on them, but there are many other ways to make the first Christmas special for the new parents and everyone’s memories.

Maybe start a family tradition of Christmas photos (thanks for the idea Bronwyn) or the youngest person gets the first gift. Or perhaps rethink the venue and format of your Christmas celebrations to be more baby and child friendly. Get everyone to sign a Christmas card or scrapbook page (like a 21st key or wedding guest book) or record a video message.

So, what does your family do for first Christmases? Or is another Christmas experience considered more important in your family?

First Christmas stockings

I don’t remember such a fuss being made about a baby’s first Christmas when I was younger – I never saw baubles and stockings declaring ‘baby’s first christmas’ until my own kids were at least teenagers! And I’m not sure anyone benefits from this change – well, no one other than the retailers that is.

For starters, the baby can’t read and doesn’t really care – sorry to disappoint you but it’s true. If the baby is old enough to sit up and watch Christmas around them, they’ll be more interested in the wrapping paper, people and decorations than a stocking (especially as many are insipid pastel things for some silly gender bias).

I prefer the ideas from Santa’s Elf on items that are at least reusable – put the year of the first Christmas on the stocking they’ll use for the next decade or so or get a beautiful photo you can display. Much better use of money than a stocking that is too small to hold anything and looks silly if used for baby’s second or third Christmas.

But even better is to just enjoy Christmas with that baby – they don’t stay babies for long so treasure it by playing together rather than buying mementos you’ll just have to store and never look at again.

A special note for grandparents, aunts, uncles and so on – it’s cute to acknowledge someone’s first Christmas with a baby but think about if they really want a cheap stocking or a genuine keepsake. My daughter was inundated last year with cutesy stockings and baubles – she feels guilty throwing them out but hates the idea of storing such nonsense. The friend who took a lovely photo of each parent holding the baby and framed them put in a little more effort and his gift is proudly on the wall for all to see.

My daughter was also happy with her brother’s ‘first Christmas’ idea of starting a family album where a photo of my grandchildren (I assume more will come!) will be placed each Christmas as a record of the family growing.

So I just think people should put a little thought into first Christmases rather than those commercialised ideas retailers want us to follow. I don’t mean to offend, just to get people thinking…

Remembering baby’s first Christmas

As parents and families, we often get excited by a baby’s first experience of things – and Christmas is no exception to this.Baby in a first Christmas bib

Of course, what happens for the baby on Christmas can be very different as it could be one day or 364 days since their birthday. A newborn will have no idea Christmas Day is special but an older baby will notice things are happening.

Many of the things done to show it is a special day for the new family form mementos (keepsakes) that can be saved or even reused, such as:

  • a Love Santa letter that is added to a scrapbooking album or frame after Christmas
  • a toy Santa or reindeer labelled for the baby or ‘first Christmas’ can be used as an annual decoration or plaything for a limited time each year
  • giving a (full size) Christmas stocking with the child’s name and year on it – this can be used at subsequent Christmases
  • Christmas tree decorations with the name and year or ‘first Christmas’ on the decoration – again, this can be used each  year as a reminder and given to the child for their own home when they are an adult
  • mini Christmas stocking with ‘baby’s first Christmas’ printed on it
  • a top or suit with ‘baby’s first Christmas’ printed on it – if given early enough, this can be worn at various December events, too!
  • a special photo (such as a photo with Santa) can be framed or highlighted in an album
  • a personally written letter, poem or story can be displayed that Christmas then stored in a scrapbooking album or treasures box
What special items has your family got stored away from a baby’s first Christmas? Do they ever get looked at or reused?

Keep Christmas colours, not gender nonsense

I hope it’s ok that I have a whinge here! But it really annoys me that so much of the ‘first Christmas’ stuff is only in pink and blue.

For one thing, I am still pregnant so don’t know if I’m having a boy or girl (I’m due on 20 December so buying in advance is pretty necessary!). But I don’t want lots of pink or blue according to gender anyway.

Christmas Eve - red stockings, tree, snack for Santa

Traditional red stockings suit many people more than pink or blue stockings

I see no reason to distinguish between genders with colours at the best of times, but at Christmas I would much prefer red or green to stick with Christmas – or maybe purple as that is a trendy Christmas theme colour.

Is it just me or can we tell shops to get rid of gender-based Christmas gimmicks and concentrate on Christmas as the only necessary theme?

Santa Photos

Growing up, I saw too many kids being forced to sit on Santa’s knee for a photo, so I decided when I had kids I would only get a photo done on their first Christmas.

My second son was born exactly a week before Christmas. Two days before Christmas I took him to the shopping centre to get his photo taken. I have the most beautiful photo of him at 5 days old fast asleep on Santa’s knee. The photographer even zoomed in a bit so it’s just my son and Santa.

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