The halls are decked, the snow is falling, and the cozy winter season is kicking into gear. For many of us, the best time of the year is right now: the weeks leading up to Christmas. This is definitely a holiday that is steeped in tradition, from activities to food, and we carry on traditions that our families started.
Now that we have families of our own, it's definitely time to start some new traditions. We know that our little ones enjoy this holiday as much as we did when we were their age (and, let's be real, we still love Christmas so much).
Read on to find out about 10 Christmas traditions to adopt this year.
10. The Most Important Meal Of The Day
Breakfast is a super important meal, and one of the best breakfasts of the year is definitely the morning of December 25th. What do you usually do for breakfast on this day? Do you scarf down some peanut butter spread on toast so your kids can open presents earlier? What if you do something different this year?
If you're looking for some new Christmas traditions, this one from Daring To Live Fully sounds perfect: "Start the tradition of having a special breakfast on Christmas Day." Suggestions from this site include eggnog pancakes or french toast.
We can picture it now: us, our families, and a pile of sweet carbs to start the holiday off right.
9. Movie Night
Many of us are addicted to holiday movies that are playing on TV from the day after Halloween until a few days after Christmas. They are cheesy and wonderful and make us feel good. We know that our kids love a few Christmas movies as well — we all want to watch as many as we can during this winter season.
Knowing how much we all love the season, what about combining a movie with decorating? Morning Chores suggests watching a movie while decorating the house and putting ornaments and lights on the Christmas tree. This sounds lovely and enjoyable for a peaceful night in.
8. Dear Santa
Santa is, of course, a big part of Christmas every year. But beyond taking our kids to see him at the local mall, we might not be sure how to make Santa part of our holiday celebration.
Daring To Live Fully also has this awesome idea that is definitely a Christmas tradition that we should adopt this year. She suggests penning a letter for your children from Santa: "Write a letter from Santa addressed to each of your kids letting them know they’ve been added to the top of the 'nice list.' You can also highlight any special accomplishments they’ve had that year in the letter so that they know how proud Santa is of them."
7. A Poet's Christmas
Taste Of Home asked people what Christmas traditions they have, and this response from Ginger Scott, who lives in Arizona, is awesome: “The in-law side of my family has a tradition of reciting poems over homemade appetizers. We work on the poems the week leading up to Christmas and, before opening presents, we take turns sharing."
This is a really creative Christmas tradition to adopt, and it should be something to consider if you have a close-knit family.
The point is to have a good time and enjoy ourselves. That should be our whole approach to the holiday, right? Sometimes Christmas can be stressful, so this would be a nice way to have fun.
6. Christmas PJs
I have a cute idea: what about having your kids open up a present on December 24th and giving them PJs to wear that night? This sounds like a really fun Christmas addition to adopt. As this mom wrote on Morning Chores, "A tradition we had growing up was we got to open one present on Christmas Eve. I now do this with my kiddos, but I have a specific present in mind."
The cool thing is that your kids can wear them on Christmas and it's a festive way to start the holiday. Maybe we can give ourselves some new ones, too, and everyone can follow this tradition.
5. Have An Experience
We know that the holidays are not necessarily about gifts (and getting as many as you possibly can) but, unfortunately, all the marketing can quiet the real message and meaning of the season.
When Huffington Post asked readers for their traditions, this mom's really stood out as a beautiful idea. Ivette Palomera wrote, “We started the tradition of giving our son experiences/adventures instead of toys. Last year, we gave him a Christmas-themed picnic on a lake with his little friends. He’s now a picnic enthusiast! This year, we may give him a year pass to a local children’s museum as a gift that keeps on giving.”
4. Christmas Through The Years
Christmas is a fascinating time since we not only carry on traditions from year-to-year, but we also get super nostalgic. We remember Christmases from the past, and as we watch our kids get older, we get super emotional and want to remember all of the super sweet moments. It's definitely a holiday that makes us reflect on the past and think about the future that is ahead.
Anxious Toddlers has this cool idea: "Take a picture each year in front of the tree in the same poses. Keep an ongoing collection for a photo series that shows them growing up."
3. Family Project
Do you mail a lot of Christmas cards every year? If you do, then you'll really love this tradition from Babble: making cards more of a family project. As this mom wrote, "With the number of Christmas cards we send, it feels like a production line to put together. We crank up the Christmas tunes and get the toddlers involved by letting them color the envelopes."
This is such a nice idea since it's a productive and efficient way to get those cards out, but also allows us to continue to spend time with our little ones. After all, we want to spend as much time together as a family as we can this time of year.
Also from Anxious Toddlers is this Christmas tradition: "Make a red and green paper gratitude chain. Each night leading up to Christmas, each person writes what they are grateful for and adds it to the chain."
It's wonderful to teach toddlers and kids how to be thankful. We want to instill these values in them on a regular basis, but it's even more important during the Christmas season. Sure, kids love gifts, but it's nice to make Christmas about the season of giving, and that's exactly what a tradition like this one does.
1. Toy Story
The best Christmas tradition to adopt this year comes from a parent named Kyle Taylor, telling the Huffington Post: “I always make my kids pick out a few toys each that we then donate to less fortunate children (not to the Red Cross or Salvation Army, but locally), even though we aren’t that fortunate ourselves. I guess it is cliche, but I’m hoping to instill a desire to give and sacrifice potential presents to give to others.”
We know that our kids love getting new toys on Christmas day, but at the same time, we want our kids to be kind and compassionate. This Christmas tradition is perfect and we can't wait to give it a try.