December 21, 2020
Your baby’s first year will be filled with many milestones and memorable moments. Their first winter holiday (whatever that may be) is a great time to cement new and legacy Christmas traditions, make Hanukkah mementos, or capture baby’s first New Year’s Eve on film.
The best part about starting a holiday tradition with your baby during their first year? So many of the holiday traditions you can start during this cherished first year are low cost while also providing quality, immersive time with the newest member of your family.
Here are a few ideas on ways you and your baby can spend a little quality time together this holiday season.
Start Reading A Visit From St. Nicholas
It is never too early to begin reading to your baby. Early reading cements good literacy habits in children and inspires them to continue reading when they are older. Although babies often benefit from highly-visual texts, the soothing tones of their parents’ voices also foster connections between a baby and their parents.
Ever since A Visit From Saint Nicholas (often referred to as the Twas The Night Before Christmas poem) was published, it has been a hallmark of holiday literature for children of all ages. Getting a well-illustrated copy of the poem or another holiday book for kids and reading it to your little one is a great way to get them involved with the season while also fostering their love for reading.
“Baby’s First” Ornaments And Keepsakes
Ornaments or personalized keepsakes are customary gifts for babies during the first years of their lives. Salt dough ornaments or casts are a fun way to cherish your baby’s tiny handprints, and are easily made into tree ornaments. If your holiday celebration doesn’t involve decorations, you can make salt dough plaques painted with holiday colors. If that’s not your style, taking a holiday photo and putting it in a “baby’s first” frame is a lovely way to commemorate the holidays and baby development at the same time.
Have A New Year’s Dance Party
The party doesn’t end after those eight crazy nights of Hanukkah or December 25th! New Year’s Eve is a huge holiday milestone for your baby, and there are lots of lovely ways to celebrate it with the littlest person in your life.
If you plan on staying in with your baby this New Year’s eve, include your baby in your celebrations (working around their bedtime, of course!) Throw on some tunes, dress baby up, and catch them toddling to some catchy music. Of course, if your baby does happen to be up for when the ball drops at midnight, be sure to catch it on camera!
Decorate A Gingerbread House
Gingerbread houses are delightfully seasonal and don’t have ties to any December holiday — despite being associated with Christmas. Decorating a gingerbread house, whether you make it from scratch or buy it store-bought, is a fun and messy holiday tradition that you can start before a baby even turns one, though, babies should be six months or older before they try solid foods.
If your baby is new to solid foods, you can decorate using baby-appropriate foods. Place a large piece of low-sugar gingerbread on baby’s high chair tray and put baby-appropriate food decorations on the tray, as well. These might include yogurt (babies six months or older), cheerios (babies eight months and older), berries (babies eight months and older), and banana pieces (babies four months or older). Show them how to put the food on the piece of gingerbread and let their imaginations run wild! Just be sure to supervise, as gingerbread is likely a new solid food.
Do A Holiday Photo Shoot
Last but certainly not least comes the holiday photoshoot. Photoshoots are great fun for families, and it’s important to remember to document your baby’s first winter with you. The best part? Winter shoots are endlessly versatile — you can utilize winter sweaters, matching pajamas, or your Sunday best, depending on how you want your portraits to look. Just remember to smile and look at the camera, and you’ll be golden.
I’ve still got time to document your baby’s first December, but the holidays are quickly approaching. If you’re hoping to do a family photoshoot, let’s talk!