Christmas Traditions

Merry Christmas Eve! I’ve been having the best, most relaxing last few days before Christmas. I’ve done some visiting with friends and some last-minute shopping (which is my standard – I always work best with a deadline!), but mostly I’ve been hanging out and relaxing. I know that I really needed this time, and it feels so good. I’ve been trying to work on so many different projects at once, and it’s been taking a bit of a toll on me. So this time has been amazing.

I’ve also been taking part in some of my Christmas traditions! I don’t know if you guys have any traditions that you do every year around the holidays, but my family definitely does. Some of them are more “real,” and others have been turned into a little bit of a joke, but we continue to do them regardless.

ONE – Christmas Movie Watching
I know – this is a tradition shared by many, many people. Some of our favorites are Elf, White Christmas, The Santa Clause, Miracle on 34th Street, and It’s a Wonderful Life. I like to watch with a nice warm hot chocolate, and plenty of mini marshmallows.

TWO – Family Shopping Trip
Every year, my mom, my dad, my sister and I all go out to the mall to buy Christmas gifts. As we’ve gotten older, the trip has gotten pushed later and later and closer to Christmas, which makes the mall a little bit crazier, but we survive. Sometimes I buy more things for me than for other people, but I still get things done! And we always finish off the night with dinner at either Cheesecake Factory of California Pizza Kitchen.

THREE – Seeing a Move
We always try to see one movie over the Christmas “break” as a family. Sometimes it’s a Harry Potter or Star Wars movie – this year I’m hoping that it’s Mary Poppins Returns. Sometimes we go out to dinner afterwards, and sometimes we eat too much popcorn during the movie and the thought of another meal makes us sick!

FOUR – Christmas Eve Mass
For as long as I can remember, we’ve always gone to Christmas mass on Christmas Eve. The time we’ve gone has changed – and recently I’ve instituted my own tradition of a blowout at Drybar before mass! – but it’s always been Christmas Eve. When I was younger, my dad would read “Twas the Night Before Christmas” to us after we got home, too.

FIVE – Snoopy and the Red Baron
This one is a tradition that my dad started when we were younger, but it stuck and continues to this day. Every Christmas morning, before we can come downstairs to start opening  presents, he has to play (very loudly) “Snoopy and the Red Baron” by The Royal Guardsmen (you can listen here). You’ve probably never heard it (even though my dad claims that it’s a classic), but it is a really fun and catchy song.

SIX – Day after Christmas Family Gathering
When I was young, we’d always go to my grandparents house on Christmas Day. But after my grandparents passed away, and my cousins started having kids of their own, it was harder to get everyone together on Christmas. So now, the big holiday gathering is held the day after Christmas. Some of the holiday stress is over, so it’s more relaxed, and everyone has a great time seeing each other and spending time together.

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