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My children are grown now, but when they were in younger years, we started a tradition with a neighbor who had 10 children.
Every Easter Sunday, that family would go to church. They always left their kitchen door unlocked. Each year we would make up a huge Easter basket and sneak over to their house to place the basket on their kitchen table with a sign that read (the great Easter bunny has visited again). We finally got caught after about 12 years of doing this. After that, we would get a freshly baked loaf of bread left on our doorstep every Easter.
This led to another tradition with the same neighbor. Every year for the past 25 years, their family gets together for Christmas. They have the grandchildren and great grandchildren each place figures in a nativity scene in the back yard. This is done in the snow, with candles lighting the area.
My part of the tradition is to play Santa for the young ones. Each Christmas eve, The family furnishes me with some sleigh bells, then at a pre-selected time, I sneak outside of their basement window. They have the children singing Christmas carols. After receiving a signal from one of the parents, I start jingling the sleigh bells, and in a loud voice, say (Ho Ho Ho, Merry Christmas everybody). After a couple of these, the children scream and race upstairs to open their gifts.
I am currently playing Santa for the third generation of children in that family. They never know who is doing this until they grow a little older. This family has some great traditions and I am blessed to be a part of them. We have been neighbors for almost 38 years. What a gift.
Try starting a tradition with your neighbors. Your rewards will certainly outweigh your efforts. Have a wonderful Christmas.
I forgot to mention that some of the parents take the children sledding so the others can place the gifts under the tree while they are gone.
Jerry, I think you are blessed with your neighbors. That we should have a neighborhood and friends like that.
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