Favorite Holiday Traditions

Updated on November 13, 2009
B.V. asks from King of Prussia, PA
9 answers

I am from a VERY large family and have recently started a family of my own. I have a little boy who is 18 months old and am due to deliver my second in January 2010. I would like to start some of my own Holiday Traditions and am wondering what your favorite Holday Traditions are now, or as a child. There is something so special about the Holidays and I would love my children to feel the same way!

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So What Happened?

Thank you so much for all of your wonderul suggestions! I can't wait to start implimenting some of these Traditions as our children grow. One of my favorite Holiday Traditions is leaving our stockings hung on the mantle until New Year's Eve. Once the clock strikes 12 and we celebrate the New Year we were able to open our stockings. This allows the excitement of Christmas to last through New Years and affords the kids an opportunity to be appreciative of the small gifts in the stockings as opposed to having them lost in the chaos of Christmas.
Thanks again,

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answers from Allentown on

I have heard about the christmas jammies and most of my family does this howeverI haven't started it yet since my little ones were so little yet but plan to this year. The other we do is I bake cookies with them and let them sprinkle on the sprinkles. I also let them open one gift on christmas eve and then the rest on christmas day.

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answers from Erie on

Not exactly what you asked, but i would just caution you to be realistic about the Holidays, we all want it to be Hallmark, but sometimes the more you take on and try to do and feel expected to do, the harder it is to be happy and calm and ENjoy it.

Our new tradition is Daddy reading the christmas story before we open presents Christmas morning,

We ended up having a tradition of baking/frosting cookies with my aunt and my grandma the sat before christmas.

when i was little, we always had Christmas dinner with relatives Christmas eve, exchanged gifts with them, went up to 7pm candle lit church service, went home exhausted, then had our own christmas at home on Christmas day. My favorite memory was cuddling in the truck singing christmas carols with the radio on our way to dinner.

So, i'm sure that wasn't something anyone planned but It meant the most to me. Just roll with it, you'll find some traditions work and feel right to you and your family and some won't and sometimes you'll need to adapt and change them.

Flylady.net has a "holiday control JOurnal" basicaly a list of things to help you stay organized through out the holidays and often people share their traditions. you might want to check it out.

Happy HOlidays and Congrats on the new little one. My two are spaced about that far apart and It was nuts at first, now i love it.



answers from Philadelphia on

My parents always gave us a stuffed animal while we were sleeping that they said was from Santa. So it was very cool to wake up and think that Santa came into your room and gave you that doll. Although, they had to stop when I got to an age where the idea of a grown man in my bedroom at night started to freak me out:) haha



answers from Pittsburgh on

My daughter is 3 soon to be 4 so I was also looking for traditions to adopt for the holidays. I like the "jammies" idea but I also thought in order to have the real meaning of Christmas and for her to understand at such an early age that we would make cards and put things like peace,hope,giving,love and decorate with stickers and crayons and put on the tree the night before Christmas and eventually when she is older that she will understand fully.
Thanks for the question,you have alot of great responses!
Happy Holidays to you and yours........



answers from Philadelphia on

B. V When my oldest was 2 years old someone gave her the book It was the night before Christmas or a Visit from St. Nicholas. every year on Chritmas Eve we would get our christmas pj's on before bed time and I would read the story, well two more children came along and I followed the same tradition reading the story before bed time. Well they are now 21, 19 and 17 all living home still and last christmas eve along with other traditions after mid night mas and a trip to the diner they still wanted me to read the story before they went to bed. This is a tradition I do and will always treasure. As they got a little older we try to pick one night after the tree is up and the house is all decorated to sit in the living room with the xmas tree lights on and christmas music playing and just talk and relax with some snacks and hot chocolate or apple cider sometimes they have friends with them but as the night dwindles it ends up just the 5 of us and and it is so special when we can do it I wish we could do it all the time. Good luck and have fun making your traditions. J.


answers from Pittsburgh on

Hi B., One tradition that I have passed on to my girls is Christmas PJ's. Every year we allow our girls to open one present on Christmas eve...matching Christmas PJ's. Whenever possible I also buy the Hubby & myself ones that match the girls as well. It's silly, it's fun, and the girls look forward to it just as much now that they are teens as they did when they were little. The girls love watching old videos of Christmas and laughing at how they match...and they even remember what year it is by the PJ's! Have a great holiday!



answers from Philadelphia on

This is a simple and easy one - new pjs! My husband heard a co-worker talk about it liked the idea, so I adopted it for our family. On Christmas Eve (you could do this to start or end Hanukkah), my family has a new pair of pjs on their bed. This works out well as little ones are growing, hubby doesn't shop for himself (so it's a nice way to replace a threadbare pair), and, we celebrate Christmas at our house, so they all get to wear them while opening presents in the morning.

Another one is we have a "Santa Sack" - a BIG bag that's under the tree w/ 1-2 gifts ready to go for the kids (out of the plastic, with batteries in [if applicable]). This is a good way to keep them occupied with a toy for a bit so we can open a gift or two (I grew up where everyone in my family, grandparents, sister, uncle, parents, opened 1 gift at a time and EVERYONE watched & waited until their turn and I've carried this tradition to my new immediate family).



answers from Philadelphia on

Here are a few of the traditions we have with our children. I always bake Christmas cookies and they are right there listening to the music and helping. I make the dough at night since we do 13 different kinds. Then we pick a couple to bake at a time. That way the clean up and mess is done and they help scoop them onto the trays and always get to try some warm from the oven while listening to Christmas music. We have the Elf on a Shelf from Hallmark. He comes out on Thanksgiving and watches over them during the day then at night when they sleep he reports back to Santa and the next morning they have to find him as he changes locations in the house every day. We have one night during the season when we put on our PJ's and after we have diner we go out in the car and ride around looking at Christmas lights. We always make a gingerbread house or train or tree. They completely decorate it so it might not be beautiful but it is all their own creation. Every Christmas Eve we exchange the one and only gift we give each other which is always a special ornament for the tree and then before bed we leave food for the reindeer outside along with Santa's cookies. My children are now 6,4 and 9 months. I have been baking with them since my oldest was 3 months even though it just meant she was in the room with me. The seeing the lights is one all ages love. Another tradition we have which is just for winter itself. As soon as the first snow falls we always bake a batch of chocolate chip cookies. I always make sure to have the chips on hand. Enjoy the holidays with your little one and good luck in January!



answers from Philadelphia on

We have also been doing a pj's tradition. The one gift that they get to open on christmas eve is pj's. Last year it was feetsies with their name embroidered. My daughters and their daddy have a cookie day where they do a big tin of sugar and a big tin of butter cookies together.

I have a tradition that is more for us adults. We have my sisters and their significant others (also my best friend of 20 years and her significant other) come over on christmas eve. We do cocktails and hor deorves. The guys light a fire pit out back and my husband plays the christmas music inside and out. At the end of the night if we need any help with bringing up gifts or last minute assembly we have many willing hands. It is one of my favorite traditions. My sisters get excited to come each year :)

Traditions are so much fun...enjoy making your own wonderful memories :)

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