Family traditions are opportunities to be together and make memories. I love bringing out the traditions of years past, plus adding new ones. In fact, I have asked friends, read numerous books, and watched tv shows about traditions at the holidays. Some Family Traditions take pre-planning and preparations, but some may just happen; they can actually be the best ones!
An example of a tradition that just happened was one Christmas Eve many years ago. Our family attends Christmas Eve church services; we love the candlelit service complete with the Christmas story and hymns. But, our extended family celebrations didn’t begin until the next day, so there was no big meal at our house. As we were driving home from church someone said, “I feel like a hotdog.” All of a sudden that sounded perfect to all of us! Well, it was kind of late to hit the grocery store at 8 p.m. Christmas Eve, so we went to 5 different convenient stores- one had the hotdogs, another the buns! We added chips and we were set! As we sat around that table enjoying our “holiday meal”, we shared Christmas memories from years past- always a joy when you have teenagers! It ended up being a great night! The next year one of the girls asked if we were having hotdogs again on Christmas Eve? Realizing that a Family Tradition had been birthed without my detailed planning, I responded, “Yes!” That’s the day I learned that some of the best traditions would be spur of the moment!
Here are a few holiday traditions from the iBloom Team:
- Make Gingerbread Houses or Christmas Cookies
- A Thankful Circle- you might do this before you say grace or during the meal. Ask your family and guests to share what they are grateful for.
- Serve a meal at a shelter or church at Thanksgiving or Christmas. Or contact the local Food Bank- they need extra volunteers this time of year to help sort donations.
- A Turkey Trot or Walk – take a break and head outside between the main meal and dessert! Even if you live in a cold climate, bundle up, get outside, and get a little exercise together! Then you can justify that piece of pie!
- Invite neighbors or friends to your meal or dessert- friends without family or family close by will love joining your family for a day of eating and games!
- Night Light- schedule a night to drive around and look at Christmas lights. Come back to the house for hot chocolate and snacks! Invite your friends to come along!
- Sponsor a family at Christmas and provide gifts and a meal. Have the family over for a pre-Christmas meal and give them the gifts. If this isn’t possible, deliver the gifts together.
- Keep the Christmas cards you receive in a box or basket near the dinner table. Throughout the year, select a card(s) and pray for that individual or family.
- Learn or purchase a new game each year to play with your family and guests at holiday gatherings. Bananagrams was the game of choice last year!
So, as the holiday seasons approach, I challenge you to bring out the old Family Traditions, add a new one, and just “go with it” if a new one develops! Have the camera ready and enjoy making memories! And, if someone wants hotdogs for Christmas Eve, smile and say, “That sounds wonderful!”
Please leave a comment below sharing your favorite family traditions.