Christmas Family Traditions …

Christmas Family Traditions 001

 

Christmas is a special time of year to spend time with family and friends and creating family traditions is a wonderful way to build lifelong memories.  Family traditions are simply the things we do year after year that have meaning, purpose and significance for us.  Every family will have different traditions that reflect their personalities, culture, budget and spirituality and having traditions is a delightful way to bond and reconnect with the people in our lives.

 

As an example, one of our family traditions is our Annual Pudding Day.  It’s usually held in mid November every year (it happened yesterday) and my family comes together to make our puddings using a recipe, which has now been passed down through five generations.  Everyone travels from near and far, ingredients are mixed by hand, puddings are wrapped in calico cloths, boiled in large pots and then hung in the garage for 6-8 weeks and everyone has to have a stir of the pudding for luck.  It’s a magic day, one that we all look forward to and much fun and laughter is shared by everyone.

Christmas Family Traditions 002

Christmas Family Traditions 003

Traditions don’t need to be complex or expensive and here are some great ideas to help you build your own family traditions:

 

  • Christmas decorations for the kids.  Each year buy one ornament for each of your children until they leave home.  When they then have their own trees, they can take their ornaments and memories with them.

 

  • Viewing the Christmas lights.  One night where the family drives around together to see all the lovely Christmas lights on display.  The areas or streets are usually published in the local newspaper or available through your local Council.

 

  • Christmas Carols.  Most towns and cities hold Christmas Carol evenings.  Simply take along your rugs, chairs, snacks, candles and torches and share a lovely evening singing Christmas Carols.  If you can’t make it to an organised event, get together with family, friends and neighbours and do something similar at home.

 

  • Christmas Feast.  Go out for breakfast, lunch or dinner on Christmas Day and let someone else do the cooking.

 

  • Secret Santa.  Instead of spending a fortune at Christmas, have your own Secret Santa.  Before Christmas, pick names from a hat (or bowl) and set a $ limit. Each person will buy one present for one other family member.

 

  • Christmas Shopping.  Turn your family Christmas shopping into an event.  Take the kids and do it all in one day or evening.

 

  • Open One Present on Christmas Eve.  The kids will love this one and it helps to build the excitement and anticipation.

 

  • Christmas Clothing.  Buy everyone matching pyjamas or shirts for Christmas Day.  It will get everyone in the spirit and lead to some wonderful photo opportunities.

 

  • Christmas Tree.  Make an event of putting up the tree.  Choose a day when everyone’s available, play some Christmas music and have a bit of fun.  When you’ve finished the tree, decorate the rest of the house and let the kids also decorate their rooms.  We also have a tradition where the kids take turns each year putting the star on top of the tree.

 

  • Make a Gingerbread House.  This is a wonderful activity for the family to complete together and the end result will make everyone feel very proud. Alternatively, bake some Christmas treats like Rum Balls, White Christmas, Boiled Fruit Cake, Shortbread, Christmas Cookies or something similar.

 

  • Read a Christmas Story. The Night before Christmas, The Polar Express, How the Grinch Stole Christmas and other festive stories are perfect to read before bedtime. If you want to make this a bit special, turn on the Christmas Tree lights and camp out by the Tree for a Christmas Slumber Party with hot chocolates and Christmas treats.

 

  • Make a Donation to a Giving Tree. These can be found in most major shops like Target, K Mart and Big W.  Shoppers are encouraged to take a tag from the Giving Tree and to purchase a gift for a child or adult of a certain age and then place it under the tree.  We have enjoyed doing this for as long as I can remember and the girls gain so much reward from the act of giving selflessly to someone else and, in fact, this would be one of our favourite traditions.  If your budget won’t allow a gift for a Giving Tree that’s perfectly okay so perhaps you could consider donating your time instead to either a homeless shelter, soup kitchen, food bank or some other charitable organisation in the community.  If you’re feeling particularly generous, why not do both.

 

  • Attend Midnight Mass.  This is a beautiful tradition celebrated by many families.

 

  • Create an Advent Calendar.  Use one to help the kids countdown to Christmas.

 

  • Make your own Christmas Crackers.  Gather up your craft supplies and goodies to fill the insides and spend a fun afternoon with the kids getting these ready for Christmas Day.

 

  • Visit Santa and get an Annual Family Photo.  You will really treasure these when the kids grow up and after your visit to Santa, sit down together and write him a letter.

 

As you can imagine, there are loads of traditions that families start to give life to the joy and magic that is Christmas, traditions that make Christmas special and that help create beautiful memories for children to take into adulthood.

 

So, tell me, do you have any special family traditions and, if so, what are they?

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