The holidays are upon us and we want to take this opportunity to say THANK YOU!
Thank you so much for your continued support – whether as clients, readers, followers – we are immensely grateful to have you as part of our Rock the Cradle family!
We hope you and your family have a beautiful and restful holiday and that you take a bit of time for YOU!
This week we’ve put together a special Holiday Brunch with the Doulas as we share stories of holidays present and past. Please reply and let us know what you’re doing in the coming weeks!
Cheers to an amazing 2019 filled with more bellies and babies!
We actually had a Holiday Brunch! We gathered spouses and 10 of our 13 children and shared a yummy meal and celebrated our wonderful clients like YOU!
My family and I lived in Uruguay for three years. And our first year there, what a surprise it was to learn that Uruguayans spend Christmas Eve partying in the streets…and setting off the loudest fireworks you’ve ever heard! We had just put our daughter, then two, down to sleep for the night, when the noise started…and it went on for like an hour. On Christmas Day we went to the beach—it was 30C out! Kind of missing that right now.
My 7yo said to me recently, “Mama, you know what’s my favourite thing about Christmas?” I assumed it was getting gifts. But she said it was seeing her family. At the moment we don’t have close family in town and I guess I didn’t realize how much she misses her aunts and grandparents.
We’re headed “home” this year, to Ottawa where I’m from. My husband’s parents live there now and my parents will be going there from Vancouver Island.
I’ve really realized how we’re not tradition people. Like, sometimes we have stockings, sometimes we don’t. Sometimes we open presents on Christmas Eve. Sometimes it’s Christmas morning.
We’ve never done milk and cookies cause I’ve made a point of not doing the Santa thing. But this year, at 7 and 5 years old, the kids have decided Santa will come. They know he’s not real but they really want him to come… so I guess he’s the one that will fill up stockings this year. And we’ll laugh and find the joy in the game.
One thing we do usually do do, however, is run around a lot and we complain and then do it again the next year. So I think next year we’re going to hang home and have everyone come to us. Or maybe we’ll go somewhere exotic. Maybe Santa will fly us there.
Thanks for helping me remember the holiday memories from so long ago!
As a kid in Gaza, the highlight was when, a few days before Christmas, my Dad would load us into the station wagon – all 8 of us – to go choose our tree. We would drive to a citrus tree grove that had pine trees. We would get excited to choose the tallest tree. Then we would decorate it and wait patiently for the gifts to be put underneath.
The week prior to Christmas, my Mom would get started on making the special cookies we ate at that time. They were either filled with nuts or dates. Just the smell of those baked goods marked that the holidays were upon us. I remember one year asking my Dad how Santa would bring gifts for us since we didn’t have a chimney like they do in cold countries. He simply said that he would leave a secret window open for Santa to climb through. That year my older brother discovered that it was my Dad placing those gifts that were signed Papa & Mama Noël 😂 !
We would be allowed to stay up late on the 24th playing games with our parents. The next day we would open the gifts and receive friends and family members who would come to wish us well and give us kids gifts.
Some years we would go to the nativity church in Bethlehem to celebrate the midnight mass.
Now, my family celebrates Hanukkah instead of Christmas. We decorate the house with Hanukkah decorations, and light the Hanukkiah every night for the 8 nights & play dreidel games with friends. And we usually make latkes, fried potato cakes, and jelly filled doughnuts! Yum!
Since I was young, the best part of the holidays for me was singing holiday songs. It’s not everyday you get to sing together with your family and friends!
Next time you sing in a group notice how you feel. You’re probably experiencing a joyful, calm, and warm inner feeling!
As a doula, I value singing even more now as I know that low and slow sounds supports the secretion of oxytocin, the LOVE hormone! Singing to your baby during pregnancy has a calming effect on both of you. During labor, long or low and slow sounds relax your throat and jaw muscles and help you find more calm and ease. And singing or humming to your new born baby soothes them and helps them settle and find calm.
It’s like magic!
I love how we can experience the benefits of singing, and feel joy and love all year round!
Christmas is always a very hectic time in our family. As it is with most people who celebrate at this time of year, I know. However, without any planning on my part, I gave birth to not one, but TWO holiday babies! Yes, two!
My first was born on Boxing Day, a week before his due date. His birth planted a seed in my soul. I knew that I had to become a Doula so I could share with women that birth can be beautiful, powerful and positive!
Four years later, my third baby was born, this time on December 28th. (Spring has an effect on me!) As with most third and fourth children, there are less photos, no baby books, and no written birth stories!! Agh!
Needless to say that with everything going on, like organizing the end of school activities, holiday dinners, and birthday parties, I sometimes drop a ball or two….like the year my son finally had his party with this friends…..in April!
Over the years, I’ve had to learn to let go, to do things simply. Which is wonderful! I try not to stress out about the details, and just enjoy the moments. And our kids are happy as long as mommy and daddy celebrate them on their day!
Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a special
Happy Birthday to all the holiday babies!