Every year around Christmas since my sweet nephew was born, we have gone to an event at Heber Valley Railroad called the Polar Express. The train is decorated with Christmas lights in the cabins, workers are elves, and during the train ride Santa even stops by to say hello! It has been a tradition our family looks forward to every year, especially my train obsessed nephew. This year, the situation looked a little grim to our chances of going but that wasn’t going to stop my parents from giving us a memorable trip to the North Pole.
My whole family is very do-it-yourself. I mention my mom a lot but my brother has graphic design and drawing skills, and my dad can build anything. What do I mean by that? When he found out my nephew liked trains, he BUILT a ride on train in their backyard. This train isn’t just for kids though, any adult can ride it (and we definitely do). With a working train in their backyard, the polar express event would look different but we could still do one.
They thought of everything for this event! When we arrived, my parents had ordered some food for dinner which we ate while my nephew excitedly played with the mini polar express train setup on the kitchen table. Once we all ate, we went into the backyard to find we had travelled to the North Pole! Complete with the North Pole sign, Santa, his elves, stockings, and a train with twinkling Christmas lights going around on the tracks. They even had a few fire pits going to keep us warm in the cool 30 degree weather. It was a blast!
When we did go back inside my parents had setup a projector in the family room connected to the kitchen and we watched the movie Polar Express as we all happily drank our hot chocolate and munched on treats left in the stockings we found outside.
Moral of the story, just because your tradition needs to change, sometimes it ends up being for the better! I had more fun this year than ever before and it was all thanks to my parents creativity and that special Christmas magic.
I’d love to hear from you! What is a tradition you had to change up in 2020 (because well… 2020) but you ended up loving even more than the original!