Monday, December 20, 2010

{Christmas Traditions}

It's Christmas time (just in case you didn't get the memo!)!

One of my favorite things about this time of year is all the traditions that I have grown to love through the years. Traditions that I was so excited to share with my husband and that I now get to share with my daughter. I love that we have been able to start our own traditions as our new little family.

I thought that I would share with you, in hopes that you will do the same. I love hearing what others look forward to and do with their families! Hey, we might inspire each other to start something new!

So hear it goes!

Our holiday begins, as many others, right after Thanksgiving! We begin to put up all of our Christmas decor. My favorite part of this is decorating our Christmas tree. We turn on Christmas music, pour a glass (or two!) of eggnog....which is a necessity for tree decorating and simply enjoy each others company. I love starting the month this way as it really warms my heart. I love having a special night to spend with my family and just enjoy one another. This year we were lucky to share our tree decorating with my parents and my Grandfather. It was truly special.

Then there are the lights....ohhhhh the beautiful Christmas lights! I love the way they sparkle and glow and I love the way my little ladies face lights up when she sees Christmas lights! There are a few places in our area that do magnificent light displays that we are sure to make it to each and every year. We bundle up and walk around enjoying each and every display. We of course decorate our home with some sparkly goodness but what I really love is driving around looking at all the beautiful ways others decorate their homes.

For quite a few years now we have also enjoyed the boat parade that takes place on the lake my parents live on. Some years we participate, some years we watch. It is so fun to see the boats all decorated in lights, hear all the music playing and wave to all those sitting on their docks as you pass by! Averee was able to enjoy it this year and just LOVED seeing all the boats and waving to everyone!  We then head back to my parents where we enjoy some very tasty beef stew. My mom makes it every year for the boat parade and I swear every year it gets better!

Christmas Eve and Christmas morning are my absolute favorite days of the year! On Christmas Eve we get all dressed up and head to mass at our church. It is always crowded and we always are standing in the back (we actually bring our own chairs :) ) but I love seeing all the families who have come together to celebrate what God intended for us to celebrate....the birth of his son. I love the smiles I see and the friends I run into after mass. I love that I get to share this special time with my family.

We then head to my aunt and uncle's home for a yummy meal and just spend time together. We open gifts and listen to some Christmas tunes. On our way home we always take a little extra time to drive around and look at those beautiful lights I love so much! It is just magical! Once we get home, we climb into our jammies and then sit down to read 'Twas the night before Christmas. When I was growing up my dad read this to me each and every Christmas Eve. It is a special memory that I have had for so long...sitting on the couch with my mom and dad (I'm an only child if you didn't know). Although I was not able to be a part of this last year with my girl (I was taking care of some very sick kids) my husband carried on this precious time with her by welcoming her to her first Christmas with this special tradition. He even called me at work so that I could listen to him read to Averee. It was beautiful! That night we leave our Christmas lights on, inside and out, all night long to light the way for Santa.

On Christmas morning we wake up and head to see what Santa has delivered. We then brush our teeth and head out the door to go to my parents home. That's right....all we do is brush our teeth! Christmas for our family has always been very causal and we all stay in our jammies all day long. My mom makes the most spectacular Christmas breakfast and then we all just relax while watching Christmas movies! We then have a lovely Christmas dinner together, while still in our jammies. Our dinner changes each year...this is one way we are not so traditional!

This year we are adding a couple of traditions into the mix. I had never heard of reindeer food until last year! So what are we doing? We are going to make some and sprinkle it all over our yard so that Santa knows just where to stop! I know Averee won't understand it this year but I'm pretty sure she is going to love it in the years to come. We are also going to start baking cookies for Santa....I'm sure it sounds crazy to some of you but baking has never really  been a big part of my holiday. Sure I love enjoying all those delicious treats but rarely have I been on the creating side. But this year that is changing....I believe this will be a wonderful time for my girl to look forward to every year.

And that's it! The special times during the last month of our year are just magical to me. You can usually find me with a smile on my face singing a little Christmas tune!

I hope you have enjoyed this and I look forward to hearing the special things you look forward to! I thought I would leave you with a few photos from the girls very first Christmas!

Averee's first visit to Santa!

 This was a little photo shoot we did in front of our tree! Wow has she changed so much this year!

 Christmas Eve before heading to mass (and no those are not jammies they are my work scrubs!)

Here we are Christmas morning at my parents home! It was a very special first Christmas with the girl!

And finally here we are this year with my parents! It is amazing how much changes in one short year! I am looking forward to this Christmas with the girl and all the ones to come!

I hope each and everyone of you has a Merry Little Christmas!


I like to share!
Sumos Sweet Stuff
Finding Fabulous
Giggles, Glitz and Glam


  1. Michelle- I loved this post! My husband and I were just thinking about new traditions for our little family and this game me some great ideas! Hope you guys have a Wonderful Christmas :)

  2. Michelle, Such a cute post! Thanks for sharing. I hope you have another wonderful Christmas with your family. One fun tradition that Chris and I started is writing in a book that details what we did that year for Christmas: Where we were, what we ate, what Santa brought, etc. One person writes in it one year and then the next year we give it to the other person as a gift under the tree. The other person can't read it until the next year when they open it on Christmas. We look forward to passing it around once our kids are old enough to write in it, too. It's been especially fun for us since we have lived in many places with the military and since our families live in different states.

  3. What wonderful traditions! That boat parade sounds amazing. And I think we are going to do the reindeer food this year too. So fun!!

    Merry Christmas!


  4. Great traditions! We previously got to open a present Christmas eve and it was always pajamas. My dad got tired of that little tradition so the last two years we got cute clothing to wear for family Christmas photos. I'll take the new shirts over the pj bottoms that rarely are long enough for my long legs.

    This is only my 2nd year with my husband so our traditions are changing. We spend Christmas Eve with his parents, go to his Uncle's church for the Christmas Eve service and then do a gift exchange with extended family. Christmas morning is spent with my family where we start our morning off opening stockings then eating a massive breakfast before opening all the presents!

  5. Since we move alot and are moving again after the new year. We start by always putting our trees (thats right I said trees) up either Thanksgiving day or the day after. One big family tree in the living room, the tree santa puts presents under. The other tree goes in the kiddos room. It is a miniture tree, like 2 1/2 feet high. The kiddos decorate it to there liking with there ornaments and santa leaves there stockings at that tree. We have a special ornament that they hang on there tree to help them turn it off and on, so no one is playing with the plug and outlet. We decorate the house through out the month. A few days before Christmas we bake all the tastey hip loving goodies. We go and see santa several times just to be sure he knows all the things we want for Christmas. Christmas Eve is the last visit we have and we ask santa what he would like as a snack that night, last year he wanted wings and root beer. We then go and watch Christmas Eve service. When we return home we choose one present to open and then relax and watch A Christmas Story. We wake Christmas morning with candycanes in hand that santa left behind. We open all presents and stockings and enjoy pancakes and festive cinnimon rolls with red and green icing. We then make the family rounds around mid day ending up at my in-laws for lasagna dinner. After dinner we walk the neighborhood to look at all the beautiful lights.


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