Christmas Traditions

22 Dec

I still can’t quite grasp that Christmas is in three days. Three. Days.

Since my family bounced around a fair amount when I was growing up the four of us have been extremely close so it’s no surprise that we’ve established a fair amount of traditions over the years. Here are a few of my favorite:

* Every Christmas Eve my brother and I put together a gingerbread house. I can’t say that we are so awesome that we make and bake the house ourselves but we have a great time decorating and laughing, getting our fingers all sticky and we consider it a great success if the roof stays on. Sadly ours will not look like this:


* My dad, though I love him dearly, is one of the worst wrappers in the history of wrapping presents. Each Christmas Eve we hole up in my room or the “wrap station,” room for a few hours with a Christmas movie or two as the background, bond, and wrap. We take our time to put cute little notes on the To/From Tags, add some ribbon and bows and just enjoy the day. Perhaps this year I’ll dress up, a little something like this:


* Being that my family is highly influenced with Italian genes, we love to eat. We spare nothing on Christmas Eve when it comes to dinner. Honey ham or Roast Beef. Baked macaroni and cheese (Italian style), side dishes, wine, pretty centerpieces and of course, family fun. We have a mix of eaters in our house (vegetarians, allergy-ridden and etc) so we make sure to accommodate everyone.

* I grew up in a very literary and music-centric household. For as long as I can remember we have read “A Christmas Carol,” by Charles Dickens in December, usually finishing it on Christmas Eve. This tradition has fallen off the wagon a bit as we haven’t all been under the same roof for the last few years but it’s a tradition I hope to carry on when I have a family some day…

* One Present. Every Christmas Eve before we go to bed we are allowed to open one present, handpicked by our parents. To this day my family still doesn’t put all the presents under the tree until my brother and I are sleeping. It keeps the Christmas Magic & Spirit alive and also keeps us from guessing what presents we may be receiving.

* A Christmas Story. It wouldn’t be Christmas without “A Christmas Story.” Thanks to TBS’ 24-hour marathon we can be sure to catch it at least once. (And if we miss it we have the DVD as well.) It tends to be the background noise throughout the day. I kind of love it.

Of course our Christmases wouldn’t be what they are without the love, affection, blessings and laughter that is ever-present over the holidays.

What traditions or events are you looking forward to?


21 Responses to “Christmas Traditions”

  1. SoMi's Nilsa December 22, 2009 at 4:58 pm #

    Awww, I love these traditions. And I love that, even though you’re well into being an adult, you still place a certain amount of importance on them. Maybe someday three generations will share in the same traditions!

  2. Amber from Girl with the Red Hair December 22, 2009 at 5:10 pm #

    Aww I LOVE all of your Christmas traditions, those sound great!

    We always open one present on Christmas eve also.

    I am a TERRIBLE wrapper but Eric is not, so he wraps and I put the bow and To/From tag on the present :)

    Merry Christmas, love! XO

  3. Matt December 22, 2009 at 5:37 pm #

    “My dad, though I love him dearly, is one of the worst wrappers in the history of wrapping presents”

    I am right there with him.

  4. jen December 22, 2009 at 6:43 pm #

    i am looking forward to pizza on christmas eve, horrendous wrapping jobs by yours truly ( i think i can beat your dad!) and watching White Christmas…Merry Christmas!!!!

  5. Habbala December 22, 2009 at 6:52 pm #

    I am looking forward to Midnight service on Christmas eve and starting new traditions! Like, breakfast Christmas morning with my mommy.

  6. mandy December 22, 2009 at 7:19 pm #

    I love traditions and yours all sound wonderful. I love that you and your Dad hang out and wrap. Thats so sweet. I’m looking forward to Christmas Eve, thats always been an important one for us, with the whole family. Christmas morning we all sleep in and my mom makes great brunch.

  7. katelin December 22, 2009 at 7:21 pm #

    aw your traditions make me so happy. i think the only one we have is opening one present on christmas eve as well but i’ve sort of left that to my younger brothers now. but i hope to start some of my own traditions between me and matt and when we one day have a family.

  8. Emily Jane December 22, 2009 at 7:57 pm #

    My dad’s a terrible wrapper too! He even tapes the paper to the present so it stays put lol :)

  9. Elizabeth December 22, 2009 at 8:33 pm #

    We also have that open one on Christmas Eve tradition! My sister also has the unfortunate tradition of waking us all up around 5 in the morning. Brat!

  10. Caz December 22, 2009 at 8:55 pm #

    I love that you open one present on Christmas Eve, as we always did too. And again, none of the presents appeared under the tree until Christmas morning. Mostly this was because my Mom ran an in-home day care so presents + kids didn’t work so well, but it’s a tradition I love.

    The past few years I’ve switched out with AB’s family traditions, which being in the summer are far different. Christmas Eve is Chinese food and catching up with friends at the bar until all hours. Cold cooked prawns and a lethal Christmas punch. Pretty traditional Aussies.

    Personally I like our family traditions better, but I enjoy something different these few years.

    Merry Christmas to you!

  11. Jessica December 22, 2009 at 10:12 pm #

    Yeah I can’t believe it’s coming up either. Pinch me I can’t believe it. And I love that you and your bro make a gingerbread house. If my bro and I made one, it would NOT turn out well :)

  12. Lisa D December 22, 2009 at 10:26 pm #

    I loved reading about these traditions! They are all so wonderful! When I first saw the picture of the gingerbread house I was like – ‘seriously, dang this family is talented!!’

    I love the Christmas Carol tradition. That is so unique & such a neat tradition!!

  13. Mel December 22, 2009 at 11:25 pm #

    My traditions this year? To start new ones with my husband, Dan. It’s our first Christmas and New Year married!

  14. Amy --- Just A Titch December 22, 2009 at 11:51 pm #

    I love that you read A Christmas Carol! We are big A Christmas Story fans, too. Love this!

  15. nicoleantoinette December 22, 2009 at 11:57 pm #

    Okay yeah, I definitely want in on your Italian Christmas dinner!

  16. Amanda December 23, 2009 at 4:31 am #

    I gave you a blog award! :)
    I’m looking forward to my renewed tradition of going to see the Nutcracker Ballet. My grandma took me every year growing up and now I take myself ;)

  17. walkingonsunshine18 December 23, 2009 at 8:04 am #

    Our poor Dad’s and their horrible wrapping. There are 3 gifts under the tree right now wrapped in Wal-Mart flyers… classic!

  18. ria December 23, 2009 at 8:41 am #

    my gingerbread house never looks like that either

    my mom used to wait to put the presents under the tree too. i think i’m going to start that tradition this year :)

  19. Little Fish December 23, 2009 at 10:00 am #

    Oh,yeah!! These all sound so lovely. Have a wonderful holiday!

  20. Daria December 23, 2009 at 1:15 pm #

    I love the stuff you do for the Holiday, but my favorite has to be to watch “A Christmas Story”! I do have the DVD, and usually we’ll watch it once in July, just for fun. But the TBS marathon is FANTASTIC! The funny part is that I never actually see the *entire* movie – just three or four bits and pieces, and usually the same bits throughout the day…

    And I can’t get enough of it! Merry Christmas!!!

  21. Kyla Roma December 23, 2009 at 9:45 pm #

    Oh!! Oh I want the Christmas Carol tradition!! That’s such an amazing idea!

    Our new tradition this year is instead of proper presents we’re doing stockings, they’re so much fun & little silly gifts are all we need.

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