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Holiday Traditions

My daughter is 16 mos and I am pregnant with my 2nd. I would like to start some interesting holiday traditions with her. I did a few last year and have some from my own childhood but I am curious what other families do. This could be events, crafts, recipes, etc., please share if you could. Some of the traditions are what I remember most about my childhood. Thank you.

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My daughter enjoyed me reading Disney stories to her at bed time and playing house. We would would put up a tent (with two chairs and sheet)in the living room and eat, play with her toys and read under the tent. She is now 26 years old and these are a couple of the things she remembers having fun doing.

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I purchased a tree skirt and every year i take fabric paint, put it on my kids feet and let them pace one set of prints around the trim so we can watch them grow through the years. :)

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Christmas is my "thing", so we have a lot of traditions. Some of my favorite are giving my girls a gift they get to open on Christmas eve, which is always the same, new PJ's they wear to bed so we have cute pictures Christmas morning. We leave out milk and cookies on Santa's special plate. I take a picture of them holding the milk and cookies in their new PJ's, and some day hope to get organized enough to put them all together!

Last year, for the first time, we made a simple gingerbread house (my girls are older than yours, 5 & 7), and it really helped them focus on something other than their excitement. They are already asking if we are going to do it again because we "always" do!

My husband reads the girls The Night Before Christmas, and of course we snap a picture. After "Santa" comes, I like to take pictures, to have before and after shots.

Most important, we make sure to talk about how lucky we all are to be together, to have each other, a warm safe place to live and food to eat. My girls like the presents, but I can't begin to express how proud I am to hear them say "we are all together and that's what's important" or something similar, and look at their face and know that they mean it.

Have a great holiday.

1 mom found this helpful

I just read about one that I am going to start this year. You take a white table cloth and have everyone that comes write their name and date it. Children can put handprints on it. If something funny or cute happens you write that on it too. You continue to do this for each holiday and create a memory that will last a long time. The person that had the idea had one that her great grandmother started and she has it now (I believe they had it in their family for almost 50 years). The family history on it must be amazing! You can always make one for each child if you so choose so that when they grow up they can have one for their own family. Have a wonderful holiday season no matter what you choose and best wishes on your new arrival!

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter is 12 and my son is 10. Up until they were 6 and 4 we lived down the street from my sister and her 3 kids. Every holiday season I would have all of the kids bake dog bones from scratch with me. Then we would give them out to all of the neighbors with dogs. I did the dog bone thing because at such young ages there were no guarantees of accidental sneezing, nose rubbing, or anything else I would'nt want to serve to humans. My neice is 15 now and she still expects to bake with me at holiday time. I let her make human treats now!

Another thing we always do is clean out closets! You can't get presents if there is no where to put them. And how happy they will make other children by giving away toys and clothes that they are done with.

This year I would like to take them to volunteer to serve dinner at Thanksgiving. I think it's very important to see how fortunate they are. My kids happen to be extremely caring and sharing people, however, a reality slap before making out their wish lists can't hurt!

1 mom found this helpful

Yay for these kinds of topics and so far I see some wonderful suggestions!

We do the giant Christmas Eve dinner at my aunt's house and the adults exchange presents there. Santa Claus has recently started dropping in too much to my three year old's delight.

Every year I buy a new ornament for my son and this year will add my daughter as well. I used to pick them but last year he started choosing and I'll let him choose from here on out. I plan on giving them their collection of ornaments when they have their own families and Christmas trees to decorate.

Every year I also try making ornaments with my kids. Those handmade ones are so special. We've made all kinds of things and have learned some neat things along the way. Last year I bought an Ornament kit but I've also made some out of salt dough and another time I made them out of wooden shapes from Michaels.

I just read somewhere a great idea too that I'm going to start. That is to tie a different colored ribbon to each person's stocking. THe presents under the tree with that color ribbon are for that person. It's a great way for the little ones to know what's for them.

Other things I do are play lots of Christmas songs, put on lots of Christmas movies, and bake bake bake!!

1 mom found this helpful


OOOOOOO! I LOVE the red rose tradition! @--<---
That's awesome! I remember my dad always gave me and my twin sister roses every Valentine's Day. I will NEVER forget. I digress! For Christmas we always made special Christmas cookies! She would love to "help" decorate ; ) with the different colored sprinkles, icing, etc. At first you can just make cookies with her and as the years go on and she gets older, make it a service project. Make cookies for local nursing homes, children's hospitals, family members, elderly neighbors, etc. She really will love being able to give cookies to someone else that she helped make, especially to other children. Adopt a family! There are local organizations who have whole families who will have little to nothing for Christmas. Get several of your family members together and make it a group project. (Every Thanksgiving My mom, my sis-in-law, my sisters and my neices take a Turker dinner with ALL the fixings, drinks, desserts, ice, cups, flatware and find homeless people who would not otherwise have this meal. The first time we ever did this the man at first wouldn't take it because he was scared of all of us women! And then he cried and thanked us profusely because he said he was hungry. I'll never forget that one either...) Sorry! Back to the adopt a family. You can supply (preferably as a group) the tree, trimmings, turkey or some other dinner, a few gifts, etc. The looks on their faces will say it all. Also it will teach your children an important lesson. To appreciate what THEY have and to be kind to others. Maybe you could volunteer as they get older like in a soup kitchen or other charitable organization. Have them round up old toys that they don't play with anymore and help them bring the toys to children who could use them. That not only frees up their room for new stuff at Christmas, but again teaches them to give to others less fortunate. Please write us back and let us know what you decide your NEW TRADITIONS to be! I would love to hear what you and your children will be doing!


1 mom found this helpful

My daughter enjoyed me reading Disney stories to her at bed time and playing house. We would would put up a tent (with two chairs and sheet)in the living room and eat, play with her toys and read under the tent. She is now 26 years old and these are a couple of the things she remembers having fun doing.

1 mom found this helpful


My favorite tradition, which I have carried on w/ my family now... On Christmas morning, my Mom would always be up early. We would get to open our stockings, and then my Grandparents would get there, and we could open our presents... Then My Mom's real work began... she made home made blueberry waffles - blueberries that she picked the previous summer and froze, perfect waffles (which I have yet to perfect!) Fresh o.j. sausage, bacon, coffee, hot chocolate - maybe it was so we all stuffed ourselves so much we would be tired - thus my Mom catching a catnap before starting on her homemade rolls for xmas dinner at my Grandparents house.

Since all my kids are little, we just have the hot chocolate for breakfast - but only the good stuff, where my husband makes it from scratch, melting the chocolate, etc.

I am also really big on decorating the house - when I was single, I did it the traditional more grown up way, but now that I have kids, and their ornaments and decorations all over the house gives it such a warm and wonderful feeling.

Enjoy all the traditions you can. Happy Holidays to everyone!!

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