If you’re searching for some Christmas cheer and wanting to start your own Christmas traditions, I have the perfect post for you!
Growing up, we had some unique Christmas traditions which at the time seemed like no biggie, but now that I am all grown up, setting up the Christmas lights has me longing for home and the smell of my parents’ cooking. Growing up with a Portuguese dad meant that we spent the 24th preparing for the feast that would end all feasts. Yep, all the grown ups were in the kitchen preparing the dinner while my cousins and I gathered around the tree, trying to guess which gift was for who. We would then have our Christmas dinner before all settling in the lounge, mattresses piled all over the floor, to watch Christmas movies and countdown the time to midnight. At midnight, my dad would sit beside the tree teasing us with our gifts and eventually handing them all out, we would all sit with piles of gifts around us, half-asleep parents watching over us while all of us oohed and ahhed over our gifts. Christmas day always started with my mom making us bacon and cherries, and then we’d usually spend the rest of the day in front of the TV, or out in the yard, living on leftovers (and there was ALWAYS leftovers), enjoying our new gifts and company with family.
Now that I have a kid of my own, I hope to create memories that he’ll treasure as much as I cherish my own childhood. I thought that I would put together a list of simple things you can do to start your own Christmas Traditions, this year.
1. Spend a day getting ready for Christmas
Dedicate a day to putting on your Christmas cheer. We usually get stencils and snow spray to decorate the outward facing windows, put up our Christmas tree, write letters to Santa and hang the lights up outside.
2. Make an advent calendar
Whether it is a store bought chocolate advent calendar, or wrapping up 24 books to read each night leading up to Christmas, there is always something so magical about advent calendars. I also love the idea of using brown paper bags with a little treat inside each and laying them out on a bookshelf, for the kids to open each morning.
3. Make your own decorations
Keeping the kids busy over the holidays can prove quite challenging, so why not stock up on craft supplies (read LOTS of glitter) and have them make their own Christmas decorations and ornaments. They can even cut up old magazines and make up Christmas wishlists, or use some finger paint to make wrapping paper that can be used to wrap granny and grandpa’s gifts. Remember to write at the back of their decorations their name and age so that in a few years time they can look back at the crafts they made for each Christmas.
4. Make Santa’s (& Mommy’s) Cookies
The anticipation of Santa visiting soon will have the kids excited to bake and decorate cookies to leave out for him and his reindeer. We like baking shortbread cookies and giving the kids their own icing and sprinkles to decorate as they please.
5. The Christmas Eve Box
Fill a special gift box, that the kids are allowed to open the night before Christmas, with fun Christmassy things. I thought of adding Christmas PJs and matching Santa hat, a Christmas Movie, a Christmas book of sorts, and let’s not forget the snacks like Microwave popcorn, cookies for Santa and Reindeer snacks.
I’d love to know what Christmas Traditions do you and your family have? Is there a special breakfast reserved for Christmas day? How about matching PJs?