I’ve been talking about how our family celebrates the holidays with traditions. We have so many of them that I had to split it up into TWO posts! Wow. I didn’t realize until I started listing things that we have quite a lot of holiday traditions. 🙂
I’m going to write a post on our top holiday movies because when I started to list them for this post, I realized how long that list actually is. Our family enjoys sitting down to watch the movies that we pull out once a year. A Christmas Carol with Patrick Stewart is our favorite to enjoy on any December night.
Our Christmas song playing usually kicks off on Thanksgiving when I am cooking our dinner. My favorite for that day is the Boyz II Men Christmas Interpretations CD. I know I am dating myself, but I love this CD as background music and we bring it out every year for the holidays. Everyone in the family has their favorite holiday songs and we love playing them when we are decorating and throughout the season. Some of our favorites include: Carol of the Bells, Little Drummer Boy, O Holy Night, Last Christmas, and one of my personal favorites, I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas.
On Christmas Eve, our family gathers together for the reading of three particular stories: The Night Before Christmas, The Berenstain Bears Christmas Tree, and How Murray Saved Christmas. No matter how old the kids get, they still enjoy hearing these stories. Before we open our presents on Christmas, my husband reads the Biblical account of Jesus’s birth.
My favorite tradition during the holidays is our family opening the Christmas presents. When I was growing up, we had the tradition of my parents waking us up at 12:01 am on Christmas morning (that was just after Santa left, don’t you see). We would open presents and then hang out for a little while before heading back to bed to sleep in. I carried that tradition on with my older children when they were little. A divorce and life got in the way so for many years we just opened presents after we got up on Christmas morning. Last year we decided to revive that tradition and I, for one, am happy that we did.
I don’t know how many families do this, but at my house, we open one present at a time. My favorite part of opening presents is watching the expressions on the faces when my family opens their gifts. I don’t want to miss it, so we take turns.
When I was growing up, we didn’t have much money. I would usually get two big presents, one from my parents and one from Santa. To make up for the lack of big presents, my mom would compensate by over filling our stockings. I loved opening all of the neat little gifts that came in my stocking. I loved it so much that I tend to do the same thing in filling my family’s stockings. After we open all of the presents, everyone gets their stockings and we open the stocking stuffers all at the same time.