8 Ideas For Celebrating The Holidays In Multicultural And Multi-faith Households

What if you celebrate Christmas, but you have adopted a child or are fostering a child from a different faith tradition?

Nancy J. Evans Hall December 09, 2016
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What if you celebrate Christmas, but you have adopted a child or are fostering a child from a different faith tradition? Here are some suggestions that will get your creative juices flowing!

 1. Use a variety of tree ornaments that have incorporating symbols of culture and/or faith. For example, I once saw an article about a young Christian/Jewish couple that wanted to figure out a good way to honor both traditions in their home. They put up a tree…with a Star of David on top! Use can use the same concept for a homemade wreath.

2. Make your own family advent calendar. Behind each tab or in each box, you can put different faith/cultural items for each day of December. This can be as simple or ornate as you want.

3. Do some fun family photo Christmas cards. Have everyone wear or hold something symbolic of his or her faith/culture.

4. Create some personalized stockings with stitched or embroidered names and symbols of everyone’s faith/culture. If you can’t sew, get some superglue and some plain felt stockings and stick on different objects. This could be a fun family craft!

5. For Christmas dinner, have everyone get in on the party by making or bringing foods and dishes from the different cultures/faiths represented in the home. You can have a blast coming up with dinner placemats, too!

6. Here’s one that’s particularly good for homes with small children. On Christmas Eve, read aloud poems or stories from each faith/culture in addition to the Christmas ones. (Be prepared to answer questions in a way which respects the child(ren)’s religion.

7. Nothing unites like music! Sing Christmas carols along with some traditional songs or chants from the other faiths/cultures in the household. You can even use homemade “instruments” based on that of different traditions.

8. Hold an “elf workshop.” Have your child or children (invite more kids – the more, the merrier) work side-by-side with you making toys. Have them get really creative by coming up with toys, games, etc. that are related to each other’s or their own culture/religion.

Most importantly, remember to have fun together! The holiday season, no matter what holidays your celebrating, are meant to bring families of all shapes and sizes together. How will you be celebrating your holidays with your family?

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Nancy J. Evans Hall

Nancy Hall is married to the love of her life and has a wonderful teenage daughter. She earned a B.A. in English and an M.A.T. in Humane Education. She had the privilege of studying at Oxford Univerisity in England for a while and eventually moved overseas for nearly 4 years. She enjoys traveling, writing, yoga and Pilates, rock music and festivals, and all things animal-related -- she has several rescued pets. She currently works as an academic advisor at a state college.

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