The Traditions We Hold Dear

December 18, 2009 Uncategorized 8

Most holidays have traditions, ones that are handed down by family and some that are in the generally accepted ones.

I think when we marry we attempt to meld our family traditions together into our new family. If you have children that brings even more to share.

Christmas is filled with these rituals and traditions, I’d like to share a few of ours………..and maybe you’ll share some with me.

We decorate the tree together, as a family………..don’t most people? My mom was a bit more regimented about her tree, so I don’t remember much input into how it looked growing up. I want my kids to help with each step so I really don’t do anything other than point out holes for more ornaments and oooh and ahhh over how Kevin has arranged the lights. We buy new ornaments each year too, we look like a Hallmark commercial taking them all out each year…LOL.
Pictures circa 2006

We bake cookies together…….the kids and I. We have kinds we make only at Christmas and are more work intensive, but oh so good and they bring back my childhood memories.

We drive around and look at outdoor displays……………..and wishing we had more storage space for more yard ornaments……..I love how some people go all out!

We light an advent wreath candle each week and say special prayers and discuss preparing for the birth of Jesus, and what it means to us.

Because our kids don’t have jobs and we don’t do allowance, each year we give them some $$ and they shop for each family member, and they love the surprises they can create each year with just a small gift, they love this, and so do I, I’m amazed at how they search for the right gift for each of us.

This year we started something new, we are counting down the 12 days of Christmas with a small gift each day for the kids, most of the stuff came from the dollar spot at Target, candy, puzzles, ornaments, socks, cups, tiny snow globes, but really fun…………and they’ve told me how much they love waking up and seeing what the “elves” have left….ha ha.

We also attend Mass on Christmas Eve, we began this when Kevin’ s mom was still with us and then we always went to her house for food and family gift exchange, most years with all 5 of his brothers and their families(ie crowded with people and love house). I miss that family time……….we no longer get together with his brothers, no one has picked up that tradition.

Please share with me what your family does, year in and year out………….

8 Responses to “The Traditions We Hold Dear”

  1. Terra

    What wonderful traditions! I lvoe the 12 day countdown! The girls in our fam each bought each other a gift this year! THat was fun to do.

    What are those CUTE cookies in the second cookie picture?

  2. Ali

    We put up our tree on Thanksgiving and the kids decorate it. I’ve been a stickler about having the perfect tree but this year they did it all themselves–mismatched ornaments, doubling up on one branch, not enough on top–and I’m okay with that. Sort of:) I want to start a new tradition this year of visiting the capitol to look at lights.

  3. mama-face

    This was a lovely post; I most especially love that the whole family is involved with the decorating of the tree. (Most especially your husband.)

    I guess I let the cat out of the bag about one of the traditions we DON’T have!


  4. Mnmom

    We just made ton of those pretzel thingys. Cupcake and I were wondering what to call them? Jingle Pretzels?

    Traditions have been hard to keep lately with the twins being such jaded teens, but I force them anyway.

    Before Christmas we put up the Nutcrackers and the outdoor lights. We watch all our favorite movies.

    Christmas Eve we have with our friends the Mazzios. None of us has family in the area.

    Christmas Day we have waffles with strawberries and whipped cream, then appetizers the rest of the day.

    After Christmas we head out for New York or Iowa to see family.

  5. My name is PJ.

    Since the kids have grown up and we have a huge and raucous Thanksgiving, we have a quiet, quiet, lovely Christmas. Gifts are exchanged; sometimes stockings are filled and Chef Stu cooks.

    This year I haven’t been in a partying mood with all that’s going on in the house, so I’m thankful I can celebrate the holiday in my heart.

  6. sheila

    Accept for going to church together, we do all those same things! Together! lol….and those cookies with the KISS///OMG….my FAVORITE!

  7. Miss Healthypants

    I love the traditions you have–especially the new “12 Days of Christmas” one–how fun! 🙂

    I’m also curious about your not giving your kids “allowances”–I’m intrigued–can you tell me why? (Feel free to e-mail me at I find that kind of stuff very interesting. 🙂

  8. Kristen

    What beautiful traditions! We decorate the tree together as well, Christmas Eve is always spent at my MIL’s house (my family attends as well), and then Christmas Day is usually spent at my moms house (with all of my husbands family as well). My BIL started a tradition 3 years ago where we all gather for dinner on the 23rd. The boys always open up Christmas pajamas on Christmas Eve to wear that night to bed.

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