I love the holidays and I get so excited every year as October rolls in and I know I get to spend the next 3 months reveling in the festivities here in Atlanta. I start reviewing community calendars for every possible holiday event, parade and parade. I plan shopping schedules and cookie baking and decorating parties. It’s the one time of year I let myself go crazy with my schedule but to me, the holidays aren’t overwhelm. They are fun, especially the part about creating and continuing family traditions.
I love creating holiday traditions and I started ours immediately after Brandon and I were married. I’m a planner and he likes things to be consistent so planning traditions gave us specific things to look forward to every season. Our first three Christmases were spent either moving or facing serious health problems but that made creating traditions for our family even more important. We felt like it was important for us to create happy memories because we knew that looking back on those years was going to be filled with a lot of hard times. Those traditions we were creating helped us have bright spots to remember.
We’ve made a list of our favorite Christmas Eve tradition ideas and are starting them when it makes sense for our family. Some of them we are storing away for the special day we become parents. 😉
8 of my favorite Christmas Eve traditions
1. Attend a Christmas Eve candlelight service at church.
2. Read the Christmas Story from Luke 2 and share in remembering God’s blessings.
3. Bake cookies for Santa but don’t give him all of the cookies! Steal a few and settle in for cookies and hot cocoa.
4. Christmas pajamas! I love this one because not only does everyone get a snuggly new pair of pajamas but those Christmas morning photo ops look fabulous!
5. Exchange gifts with your spouse before bed especially intimate or special gifts. The special significance can be lost amidst the craziness of Christmas morning so take this time for just the two of you.
6. Pile all of the kids into a communal room for a Christmas slumber party! They can occupy themselves whispering about and being excited for Christmas while Mom & Dad only have to listen for one opening door.
7. Help keep the kids locked in by running red and green party streamers across the doorway. If the kids sneak out you will hear the ripping paper and if they don’t sneak out they will be able to bust through in the morning on their way to open gifts.
8. Unwrap a brand new Christmas-themed book to read before bed. One last story to build up the magic of the holiday.
I love family traditions and I have a lot of fond memories of the ones my parents started with us when we were little kids. They are one of my favorite things about the holidays and I love being able to think back on past holidays and be reminded of how connected these little rituals are to our family.