I have fond memories of donning a Santa hat and heading out with my mom and sister to deliver homemade pies to friends and family. I remember watching White Christmas on the couch, eating seafood on Christmas eve and driving to my grandparents house Christmas morning.
Over the past eight years, Jason and I have started building our own familys traditions.
Here are some of our favorite Christmas traditions:
Decorating our tree the Saturday after Thanksgiving.
The kids love to help me decorate it while Jason decorates and watches the Iron Bowl. We love pulling out each ornament and talking about where it came from or the story behind it.
We also love to decorate our tree with ornaments my kids have made or we have picked up during trips.
New Christmas jammies.
I like to give the kids their pajamas the Friday after Thanksgiving. The past couple of years Jason and I have also gotten matching jammies. I know its silly but my kids think its so fun that mom and dad match them. And its part of the magic.
St. Nicholas Day
When I was a child my mother tildes to put out our shoes the day we went to the Christmas parade. When we got home there were treats in our shoes left by Mrs. Claus. I now do this with my children and I now know its called St. Nicholas Day. But I always put something in my children's shoes the night of the first parade.
Baking for friends
This is something we started last year. But my kids loved it so we will continue. We bake a huge batch of cookies, brownies and dipped pretzels and take them to our friends.
Visiting the lights.
There is a house near us that does dancing lights on their home. Its so fun and we drive over to view them multiple times during the holiday season.
Each year my mom has a gingerbread party with my kids and their cousins. We make gingerbread houses and thats pretty much all there is to it. But my kids LOVE it.
Pro tip: buy the gingerbread kits when they go on sale and freeze them.
Our Christmas library
Over the years we have been given, collected, or purchased some fun Christmas books. My kids cant wait for me to get them out and reading them. This year I realized we had over 25 books. So I am letting the boys pull one book a day out to read. And having an avid reader in my house means my younger three kids get read to by their older brother.
Christmas movie night
Every Friday night is movie night at our house. During the Holiday season, this becomes Christmas movie night. We might pull from our DVD collection or watch something on Netflix.
Jason and I also have our own tradition of watching our favorite TV shows holiday-themed episode. I can probably quote every Christmas episode of The Office to you. I mean its a skill, really.
I dont buy my kids traditional advent calendars with a piece of chocolate for every day. But instead, we add an ornament to our Melissa and Doug advent tree. We also have a 5-day advent poem we do with our kids when theyre younger. (And we have a toddler and a newborn now so that means we get to do this again!)
We are constantly adding and rearranging our traditions. We have had things we have let go of as weve added kids to the mix. We have things we will do as our kids get older that we just dont do now. The great thing about traditions is that you get to decide them for your family based on what matters to you.
What are some traditions you have?