In our November E-Blast, we asked our NODCC community about their holiday traditions and memories, and we received some beautiful responses, especially in relation to their family members with a DCC. Read below to feel all the warm-fuzzies from your own NODCC family members.

What is your favorite holiday memory?

“On Christmas Eve we sat at a candlelight service. It was a beautiful, quiet moment as we softly sang Silent Night. From her seat, our daughter loudly and proudly sang out, “row, row, row boat!!” It was a moment of pure joy and innocence. I will cherish that memory forever.” – Stephanie

“We always love to go look at Christmas lights. Rhett (DCC) will point at every single lit up house and say, “look at that house!”– Zac

“There are so many but one in particular is a picture with Santa when he was little. He is all smiles and has the best grin on his face. I also love how he is now starting to figure out the holidays, who Santa is, what presents are. He gets so excited with each one and wants to instantly play with them. I love seeing his joy.” — Bridget

What have you learned from your child(ren)?

“Being with family is the most important way to celebrate.” – Orly

“Love knows no boundaries!” – Denise

“Holidays are so important and to keep the magic alive by being involved making new memories and incorporating old traditions into new traditions keeping the Spirit of the holidays alive.” – Jeffrey

“Traditions are nice and have great value, but sticking to and expecting that traditions will be carried out perfectly rob you of the joy. Sometimes we need to learn to be flexible and understand that her needs may affect how we do things, and that is okay!” – Stephanie

“How awesome it is to watch them enjoy Christmas morning.” – Thomas

“To take things as they come and not get stressed about getting things done.” – Mike

What brings you the most joy during the holidays?

“Watching my daughter enjoy the little things about the holidays, and introducing to her to my love of Christmas villages, and the way her eyes light up and she smiles when she sees all of the lights.” – Kimberley

“Being able to share the true meaning of Christmas and celebrate our Lord & Savior, Jesus, being born is a real joy for our family.” – Zac

“Being with family and seeing the joy on my little boy’s face when he sees something exciting. I also love picking out our Christmas tree (real tree family) and pulling out all of our special ornaments we collect on our travels.” – Bridget

“We always spend time with extended family which means ROAD TRIPS! During these hours of shared space, we have the chance to reconnect, decompress and sit in silence together. This is a time we have all learned to look forward to each year! Sometimes we add in a bonus stop for some additional bonding time.” – Layton

“Seeing people smile.”– Jeffrey

What are some of you holiday traditions? How do you include your child with DCC in your traditions?

“This will be the first year that Nora will participate with us and my MIL in making Christmas cookies. She loves textures and tasting things, this will be a messy, wonderful experience for us all.” – Kimberley

“Lighting Hanukkah candles (and quickly moving them someplace where a Olam cannot blow them out). Playing with an electric top that gets Olam cackling with laughter as it travels across the floor.” – Orly

“Singing fruits of the Spirit song and have Allison participate.” -Lynn

“[Our son is] only 22 months but we include him in everything! Just seeing him defeat his every day challenges is a gift in itself.” – Denise

“We always take a trip into NYC to see all the decorations. This year we saw the Nutcracker at Lincoln Center. We always do a lot of activities during the holidays and everyone is included all the time!” – Thomas

“Christmas Eve Grey and I always set out milk and cookies for Santa…It’s all about our sweet little guy and his pace. This year I want to look at some walk through [lights] displays. I think Grey will enjoy walking through them more and moving around as opposed to just sitting in his seat. We are always looking for ways to adjust and accommodate the needs of Grey.” – Bridget

“Our daughter Kelsie (25, c-acc) is a vocalist with our church’s praise band… A newer Advent tradition is our Carols & Candles evening outdoor worship service for which the band leads the singing of carols in between readings of scripture. It’s a casual service open to the community and evokes the old tradition of gathering to sing Christmas carols for neighbors and friends. It is a fun and spiritual event for all of us.” – Robin