I’m so excited and honored to have my friend Emily Wood share on the blog today. Emily and I started to follow each other when I started Bringer of Joy. Her feed is always encouraging, uplifting and honest.

Today she’s sharing some encouragement for mamas, especially as we are all about to navigate Christmas Eve and day! Enjoy this fun recipe and encouraging word from one mama to us all. Make sure to head over and follow Emily on her Instagram page: Splashes of Joy @emily.m.wood

It was the week of Christmas. We had just come off of two weeks of pure “busy”: our church Christmas play; the youth Christmas Progressive meal; the annual foster care event that we help organize; our Sunday party; the church staff get-together; school parties; Christmas shopping and several other things I’m sure I forgot to list. 

All the “big things” were over, and I was home with the boys. Kind of last minute, I decided to just look on Pinterest to see if I could find something fun and simple to do with the boys.  Our family loves pancakes, so “Santa Pancakes” immediately caught my eye.

You can google and find TONS of Santa Pancake recipes, but I stuck to quick and simple. 

– Pancakes (made using Bisquick)

– Chopped Strawberries (Santa’s hat)

– Chocolate Chips or Blueberries (eyes)

– Spray Whipped Cream (beard) **You can also use bananas.**

On Christmas Eve, I surprised the boys with the pancakes and it was a hit!

Now, I’ll be honest. I really made these Santa Pancakes with not much thought. I just thought it would be a fun way to make breakfast special that particular Christmas Eve morning…and that was it. 

Fast forward to the next Christmas….and the next Christmas….and the next Christmas after that.  December rolls around, and my boys immediately start talking about how we have to have Santa Pancakes on Christmas Eve morning. 

That particular Christmas, several years ago, I had no idea that I was actually starting a fun little tradition that my boys look forward to every year.  

Just take a look on Instagram or Pinterest, and the idea of a “starting a tradition” might seem overwhelming. A “tradition” may feel like it needs to be elaborate, spectacular and definitely Instagram worthy. But what I learned through our Santa Pancakes, is that we just complicate it! (At least I know I do!) Truth is, kids just love when we spend time with them and do a little something out of the ordinary. It doesn’t have to be something big, extravagant or expensive! 

So, here you are. It is the week of Christmas. Don’t stress yourself out trying to plan something grandiose. Just try something simple. You never know, you might be starting a new tradition.