There used to be an annual scuffle for the best Christmas stocking in my family. Sibling or not, it was a battle for the coveted reindeer Christmas stocking between my brother and I. Now that I'm older, I watch my little sister and cousins do the same thing. It's important for them to be able to point out which one is their stocking. "That's my oversized-not-compensating-for-bad-behavior Christmas stocking." "Santa will know that one is mine because it has pretty bows and jingle bells on it. So I can hear when he shoves all those toys and iTunes gift cards inside of it." Why is it so important to pick out your own stocking as a kid? Probably because it's like you're choosing your stocking-totem-pole-representation of you.

Eventually it got to the point where my mom bought us puffy paint (an amazing art medium) and new stockings so we could just write our names on them and decorate them with snowflakes and cats to our heart's content. I know, kids are silly. But that kind of ritual is important to maintaining your identity when you're a child. Like getting a new backpack for the first day of school. It's a fun way to make Christmas more intimate and memorable. If you don't have time to make them (or can't handle crafting with kids), I found some really cool stockings online. There are a bunch to choose from and there's one for all those individuals in your life who like to be able to pick out their stocking from the rest hanging above the fireplace.

What do your stockings look like this year?

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