Our 16 Favorite Holiday Traditions!
Christmas can be a time of recalling happy memories and nostalgia (for most people, that is). Here are some interesting traditions that make the holidays extra special for our team members...
Mike, Peyton and I find a night to make hot chocolate & sugar cookies, then turn off the lights except for the Christmas Tree and other lighted decorations around the house and color or read or wrap presents and make cards for family & friends.
My wife and I watch the Quentin Tarantino classic Inglorious Basterds every Christmas Eve.
I bake a few dozen Russian Tea Cakes (sugar cookies with a TON of confectioners sugar) with my mom and two brothers. We stuff our faces, drink hot chocolate, and watch my dad's favorite Hallmark Christmas movies.
Nina and I always buy three to four small small gifts and have a board game battle the few days before Christmas. Winner gets to choose a gift and scream "IN YOUR FACE!", loser gets made fun of, but at least gets to pick the next game.
My mom and I have a baking day leading up to Christmas where we make lots of different cookies and sweets for our friends and family. On Christmas Eve, we always get a new set of pajamas to wear for Christmas morning. And one odd tradition is that we always have peel and eat shrimp at the Davis family Christmas reunion with my extended family.
After Christmas Eve mass, we would come home and eat a smorgasbord of snacks and cookies while we watch Scrooge (the one with Albert Finney and Alec Guinness).
Each year, my family will host a "White Elephant" party where a $10 gift is required to participate. My mom will always finds a clever way to hide a $10 bill in one of the gifts, whether it involves solving a brain teaser or just tucked away unnoticed. The one thing that never changes is that chaos is always sure to ensue.
We watch The Watchmen -- fantastic movie that never gets old.
On Christmas day, we watch A Christmas Story at least once and have Chinese food for dinner.
On Christmas Eve, everyone in our family puts their name in a hat. Each person gets to select a name. We then go out shopping and buy the person we selected a present for them to open on Christmas Eve night.
We generally just stay close to home and hang out with the family eating lots of good food.
Every Christmas Eve, we get together at our family member's house to taste their homemade beer batch of the season and homemade eggnog.
We have a night that we build gingerbread houses (and barns and trains and coffee shops and churches and towns) with the kids each year. It may have become slightly competitive. In recent years, it has been boys vs girls. Ours is always the best! ;)
The week after Thanksgiving, we pick out our Christmas tree with the family and get it all set up and decorated in the house. The smell of pine officially kicks everything into holiday high gear for my crew!
I write letters to Santa with my niece, and we set out carrots for the reindeer and milk & cookies for Santa.
Each Christmas Eve we will get together with other families on our cul de sac and walk around the neighborhood singing Christmas carols. Afterwards we will go to my sister's house and eat steamed oysters with her and her husband, and let the kids exchange Christmas gifts.