Passing Down the Holiday Family Traditions

My two sons are growing and time is passing by fast, it makes me wonder, What will they remember most? I look back at my childhood and I don’t  remember a whole lot. What I do remember most is all the happy times, and family traditions that we had. This year will be my youngest child’s first holidays and my oldest child’s second year. Its time to start the holiday family traditions.

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What is a holiday family tradition? These are customs, beliefs and statements that will be handed down from generations. These are so important for me to show my boys, in hopes they will pass them along to their children one day. I want to carry a few traditions from my parents, and start a few of my own.

Starting off with the ones I’m passing down is holiday meals. On holidays, my mother would always cook a huge meal. Mostly on Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. She would make enough food to feed a town, even if it was just the four of us. Even being grown adults we always looked forward to this tradition. Dinner would always bring the family together and this was her way of showing us.

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Every holiday my mother and father would always buy us a card. Still to this day, we get a card for every birthday and holiday. My father has since passed away but my mother still carries on this tradition. I still look forward to her cards, they always say at the bottom, Love mom.

Now we moved across country and the family isn’t always together. Since then I started cooking Thanksgiving Dinner for my family. For our tradition I want our family to eat together and  always say what they are thankful for. Its important that they know the true meaning of Thanksgiving and express their gratitude. Because boys will be boys we will also have the breaking of the turkey wishbone.

For our Christmas tradition I want to make cookies and build a gingerbread house, the days leading up until Christmas Day. On Christmas Eve we go to relatives and celebrate with the family. I hope our tradition will be, On Christmas Eve night, I want to watch Christmas movies and read books until bedtime. We will then put out  Reindeer Food and milk and cookies for Santa. Christmas day I cant wait for my boys to wake up to their gifts from Santa and us. As tradition goes we stay in our pajamas all day long. We recognize the real meaning of Christmas and spend the day with family. I bake a ham and cook dinner.

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Of coarse we have our traditions all year long such as Easter eggs and carving pumpkins. But my point is if you don’t have holiday family traditions, its never to late to start. Not only will they be passed to future generations but its memories with your children. Both you and your children will remember these forever. Your traditions may be small or you may only have one or two, but they’re yours to keep forever.

What are you family traditions? Where they passed down or did you start your own?

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40 thoughts on “Passing Down the Holiday Family Traditions

  1. We live 14 hours from the rest of our family, so we travel home for Christmas. As a result, our kids don’t know what it’s like to open presents on Christmas morning…and it’s totally fine with them! That still blows my mind. I miss it like crazy, but they’re okay, and that’s what matters. (FYI, we write a letter to Santa letting him know what date we’d like him to come, and the night before we enjoy some Christmas Eve traditions (reading Luke 2, setting out cookies, singing carols around the tree, exchanging sibling gifts).

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    1. Even though they don’t open presents on Christmas it sounds like you all made it work. It’s really hard when your so far away from family. I’m glad you all get to be together because really that’s all that matters 😊

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  2. I’m big into traditions! Especially at Christmas time. I’m willing to change things up a little on other holidays, but Christmas has always been special to me. Even more so now that I have a daughter! Last year we were moving about a week and a half before Christmas and it completely ruined a lot of our tree decorating/December traditions. I hated it!

    Growing up we lived about 7 hours away from family. My mom was a SAHM and my dad worked full time just to pay the bills. Overtime was their “extra” money. He rarely got more than just Christmas day off from work and even when he did, we couldn’t afford to travel to see family. So until I was 9, Christmas was spent at home just my parents, my brother and myself. Then my little sister was born and the only thing that changed was sharing Christmas with an extra sibling.

    When I was 12, we opened Christmas gifts on Christmas Eve, woke up super early and drove 7 hours to see my dad’s sister for Christmas day. We drove home Christmas evening. She had cancer and everyone knew it was her last Christmas. Looking back on my childhood, that was my least favorite Christmas… because it was different.

    For my husband, Christmas consisted of waking up, getting his stocking and Santa gift, going to see his dad’s family for breakfast, going to see his mom’s family for dinner, and then coming home to open the rest of his gifts in the evening. When we got together, he wasn’t excited about Christmas because he never enjoyed it growing up. I’ve managed to change that over the years!

    What my husband and I did last year, and plan to do again this year, is stay home. Our family lives 3 hours away. It’s not a bad drive, but I want my daughter to celebrate Christmas at home with her immediate family like I did. Waking up in her own bed, spending the day in her own home. A “tradition” I grew up with, but my parents are really disappointed that I want to continue. Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve (so I can relax all day Christmas!), Bee will open a gift on Christmas Eve (a tradition from my husband’s family. When she’s older, I’d like the gift to include a Christmas movie to watch before bed and maybe a special dessert or something), Christmas morning we’ll open gifts and stay home all day as a family, playing with toys, vegging out watching Christmas movies, and just enjoying each others company. There will be other things leading up to Christmas, too, like baking cookies, sledding, stuff like that… but I’m mostly excited for Christmas eve/day traditions!

    Ha, I just realized this comment was way longer than I had originally planned! I’m just so excited for Christmas!!

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    1. That’s awesome Desteny. It’s so important to make the tradition that works best for your family. Before we had children we would go to ny parents Christmas Eve and my husbands family Christmas Day. Now that we have children we make sure that Christmas Day is spent at home. Even if we have to visit after Christmas, I want us to be together at home. I’m excited for you guys, it sounds like this will be the best Christmas yet for your family! Keep me posted how everything turns out 😊

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  3. We are passing down some holiday traditions, and starting our own! That’s the beauty of having your own kids. I’m so excited!

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  4. I love family traditions. I’ve made new ones with my family. And I’m hoping my daughter will keep them too or at least remember them when she has a family of her own 🙂

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  5. Last year we invited Gramma to spend Christmas eve with us and in the morning we made her cinnamon rolls and sang happy birthday to her. It went over really well and I think we’ll add that to our list of holiday traditions.

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  6. LOVE this post! I commented on your FB what I do. It’s a mix of things but I have 6 albums now documenting each year. In it we look through what we have done over the years and may are still the same some are added and some have gone but it’s still amazing to follow our traditions during the Holidays 🙂

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  7. We like to put popcorn on a string and place it around the tree. Last year, my hubby was deployed and our house was under construction, so we did it to grandma’s (the one who taught me) tree. It was lovely. I’m glad that you are keeping your traditions. They are important.

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  8. I love that you guys stay in all day on Christmas in PJs! I’m always running around like a nut, and I wish we had something like this!!

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  9. These are lovely holiday traditions. Our family has a few traditions from both my husband’s side and my side. We have not created very many of our own family traditions yet but I am excited to start now that we have a munchkin.

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  10. Family traditions are SO important to me!! I love starting our own traditions and now that my kids are starting to get older, they remember them and look forward to them each year.

    Birthdays: At our house, you wake up to birthday balloons/ streamers EVERYWHERE that were magically assembled in your slumber. Now that the kids are a little older, they get to stay up on their siblings birthdays to help with the fun.

    Christmas: We set up our Christmas village together and the kids ADORE it. My husband and I would actually prefer to let it go, but it’s the most exciting day of the year when we start lugging those boxes out (at the kids’ request!). I also keep all of our Xmas books hidden throughout the year, then wrap them individually. Starting December 1st, the kids take turns opening one book each night and we read together as a family of 5.

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  11. I agree! Holiday traditions are so important and memorable. My parents would always make the same appetizers every Christmas Eve, and they still do. We all gather at their house, and open one present. Now, instead of opening presents there, we open them at our house with just are kids, and it’s pretty awesome.

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