Having family Christmas traditions adds a wonderful dimension to this special time of year. There is so much emphasis on the whole gift selection, the Christmas gift buying aspect, that sometimes that becomes the main focus of the holidays. It should not be like that. By starting a few family traditions, you’ll add balance to your holiday celebration, as well as fun and laughter. Family traditions also provide roots for your children that will bring back great memories for years to come. They also provide a way to instill a sense of family in your children. Ours always make time each year to make sure they don’t miss a single meeting and we always work out schedules so everyone can be here. This is the result of years of children enjoying these fun family traditions that are as much a part of your holiday celebration as any gift.
At our house, one of our favorites is our Annual Holiday Open House… we’ve been hosting it for over 20 years and we include everyone. Children always invite friends, teachers, coaches, as well as our family and friends. Once they were in college, it provided a great gathering place to reconnect with high school and hometown friends each holiday season. It is an easy party to plan since we do a raffle and everyone contributes something. Everything goes on the table and we always have plenty. In the end, it’s never about the food, but about reconnecting with old friends and reuniting with family. Of course, our town Santa Claus is always invited which adds to the festivities.
A friend of mine with young children shared a special tradition that her family has started. His name is Elf On The Shelf and he is simply the cutest of them all. Nothing difficult or expensive, but I’m sure her grandchildren will one day be visited by the same ELF.
We also play family games every Thanksgiving and Christmas. While it may sound silly, trust me, it’s a night of lots of laughs and the kids even invite friends to join us. One year we run a Holiday Hold’Em tournament, another year we host a Santa Bingo night…they’re always fun. The emails start flying after Halloween with friends and family guessing what this year’s holiday game will be! We have prizes, of course, but nothing fancy… the most sought after are the homemade t-shirts I design for the winners.
You can read about all of our various family traditions, including The Elf On The Shelf, and even email for a free set of Holiday Hold’em cards you can print yourself at Celebration Ideas Online.