Christmas Traditions

I always enjoy hearing about other families traditions, especially Christmas traditions. We have a few at our house that either began the first Christmas we were married or once we had kids. Traditions can be fun, meaningful, or even silly, but whatever mood they put you in, they are sure to make your celebration more special.

The tradition that started during our first Christmas we were married is Christmas Eve pajamas. I have always loved this and it’s super fun with the girls. We usually spend Christmas Eve with our Moms, aka “The Grandmas” and we love to get them some new PJs or at least some “comfy pants” as we call them around these parts. After Christmas Eve service at church, we come home and it’s time for everyone to open one gift. That one gift? Freshly washed, ready to wear jammies. Everyone changes into their PJs to enjoy the rest of the evening comfy and casual. FUN!

The best tradition and most meaningful to our family is the arrival of Baby Jesus in the manger on Christmas morning. We have a nativity scene that gets set up after Thanksgiving with the rest of our Christmas decor. However, we leave that little manger empty until Christmas morning. When the girls were really little, it proved to be the sweetest part of the day on more than one Christmas morning to hear their sweet voices exclaim, “Baby Jesus is in the manger! He’s here!” Emmanuel, God with Us. Yes, sweet girls, He is here.

Daddy giving little Miss a good look at the manger. Christmas 2010

I was straightening things this morning and happened to look at our nativity scene, which WAS displayed with our traditionally empty manger. You can imagine the giggle that bubbled up in me as I cast my eyes on this scene:

Friends, Prince Eric Squinkie is all up in Baby Jesus’ manger. I mean, I realize He doesn’t really need it yet, but I think there might be a problem here. Do you think my girls are telling me that their Squinkies need a bed or that they don’t like the manger empty? I’ll have to think about this one.

Now, I know I won’t be alone on this last tradition. Food, glorious food!

Our Christmas Eve FOOD tradition is to come home after church and feast on a variety of appetizers, snacks and sweet treats. My recipe for spinach and artichoke dip (recipe coming soon!), BBQ meatballs or little smokies, veggies and dip, chips and salsa, potato skins, stuffed mushrooms and cheese balls have all made an appearance. It’s not complete without sweets like fudge, Christmas cookies, pecan bars, and cheesecake bites.

Jammies + yummy food + family = perfect Christmas Eve.

My oldest will tell you that her favorite food tradition at Christmas is the freshly baked Christmas morning cinnamon rolls. These rolls show the depth of my love for my family because not only do I get up early to roll them out and then bake them fresh, but they are NOT gluten-free so I don’t even get to partake in the deliciousness! I love The Pioneer Woman’s cinnamon rolls and as she mentions at the beginning of her post, we have taken them to our neighbors to spread some Christmas calories cheer.

Pioneer Woman Cinnamon Rolls

Do you love freshly baked cinnamon rolls but don’t want the chore of making your own dough? Let me suggest a very delicious and much easier alternative. I’ve been making this recipe for years when I need a little help from the store and my family loves them just as much. It’s the recipe I am making this year!

So how about your family? Do you have traditions you look forward to each year? Leave me a comment and let me know about them! I’d love to hear from you!

4 thoughts on “Christmas Traditions

  1. Cori

    Like you, we also do Christmas Eve Jammies. Every year, the kids pretend they don’t know what’s in that gift. 🙂 We also have a Christmas Eve tradition of Lasagna for dinner. It’s the one time of the year (besides someone’s birthday dinner, if they request it) that I take the time to make the full-blown version of this family favorite. We eat by candlelight on this night. Christmas morning means Caramel Bundt Rolls for breakfast (before we head to Abe’s folks’ house for a big brunch) and all piling onto our bed to open our “stockings” (actually large initialed fleece bags). This last tradition is my favorite–mostly because it just sort of happened when Charis was about 3, and it stuck. My kids wouldn’t imagine opening stockings anywhere else. Love that!

    1. Katie Post author

      Love the stockings! I can picture all of you on the bed together – it’s gotten more cramped as the years have passed, eh? 🙂 Thanks for sharing, Cori. 🙂


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