We all have our family Christmas traditions. From Grandma’s snazzy high fashion green reindeer sweaters to the annual Christmas family meltdown in three acts…… and everything that falls in between. But what about the fun stuff, (sorry Grandma! really.)? Here’s my list of 12 fun, but really inexpensive family Christmas traditions for the whole family to enjoy!
- COOKIE DAY – Gather your loved ones together to make a ton (you’ll see why later) of delicious Christmas Cookies!! It’s a fun day and there’s definitely a pot of gold at the end of this rainbow ride.
- ANNUAL ORNAMENT – Depending on financial circumstances, we either buy one ornament each or we make or decorate an old ornament each year. I gotta tell ya, bedazzling an old ornament is my favorite. Check out the 30 + Creative DIY Christmas Ornaments from For Creative Juice!
- CHRISTMAS PICTURES – Take a day to make some memories! You can simply take some family pictures in front of the tree, or slap on some Santa Hats and go visit a local Christmas Attraction like a Living Nativity, Christmas Fair, Craft Show, holiday parade or go to the zoo. But you gotta wear the hats! For the pictures you understand.
- CHRISTMAS PICKLE – Ok, I get that not every family has a Christmas Pickle….but you don’t know what you’re missing!! It’s like Finding Waldo, you hide the pickle ornament and whoever finds it first will receive good luck for the following year. But you could make it a daily hide and seek game. Some people play Elf on the Shelf. I’m really grateful that my girls don’t feel deprived that I can’t bring myself to mess with that creepy clown wanna be. Although, I’m not a fan if Elf on the Shelf makes your family happy, go for it!
Take A Break
- CHRISTMAS MOVIE NIGHT – What could be more fun than a night of It’s A Wonderful Life, Elf, or The Santa Claus. Ohhh, then there’s Frosty, Rudolph, The Grinch, Burgermeister Meisterburger and Winter Warlock in Santa Claus is Coming to Town. And you’re never too old to sing along with the Cold Miser and the Heat Miser in The Year Without Santa Claus.
- CHRISTMAS LIGHT TOUR – Take the family out to tour the neighborhood lights. Or I’ll bet there are some awesome free or nearly free light displays around you. From my hometown, we can go see the Midwest City Lights, Yukon Lights or the Chickasha Lights. The free Down Family Christmas light display in our own backyard is truly wonderful. And to make you feel even more Christmasy they accept donations that benefit the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma. Do a Google search to find a light display near you! Oh, and take snacks!
Sleep & Eat Christmas
- CHRISTMAS PJ’s – We have had this Christmas Family Tradition since I wore pj’s with feet. No, it wasn’t last year, ok…yes it was, but I’m talking about when I was a kid. My Granny sewed matching pj’s for all 12 of her grandkids. If you know how to sew this is also THE perfect gift! Melly Sews has a free pattern for these really cute DIY Christmas Pajamas. But, if you have to buy them, they’re on sale right now!
- CINNAMON ROLLS – This became our family Christmas tradition when I had kids. I’m too selfish to be the only person up because my family wants to sleep in on Christmas morning. What is wrong with my kids???? I made them get their happy butts out of bed, encouraged them to put some cheer on their faces and show some freakin Christmas spirit. Granted it was a little before 6 a.m., somewhere around 5:30, but come on…… it is Christmas! Since they grudgingly cooperated, I wouldn’t let them open presents until we had breakfast, so we made cinnamon rolls. Now we look forward to this tradition every year, although they barricade their doors in case I get up earlier than they do, but it’s all good, I move furniture daily, so it’s no big deal. If you’re looking for a good recipe, check out Paula Deen’s Cinnamon Rolls on Food Network.
Make A Difference
- DELIVER TREATS – Remember all those Christmas Cookies? Trust me, you will be giving your waistline it’s own Christmas gift if you give most of them away! Gather the family and hand deliver your treats. Again, put on your Santa Hats and make a day of it. Don’t just deliver to your usual victims, think outside the box. Visit a Senior Center, get permission to deliver in the pediatric or geriatric wards in a hospital. Tell your friends that this year you are exchanging your delivered cookies for a canned food donation. Then take your gathered food donations AND some cookies and drop them off at a local shelter.
- DEAR R.A.C.K. – Another great Christmas Tradition to start is a Random Act of Christmas Kindness campaign. Send Christmas cards to soldiers, visit shut-ins, or pick a name off the tree at a mall. Our local newspaper prints a list of things needed by local families and we let the girls pick and shop for their person. It gladdens my heart to see how excited they get shopping for someone else. This is serious to them, and they have to get it just right. Start a blanket drive or get some friends together to fill some cheap stockings with personal hygiene items and drop them off at a local shelter. Donate coats or toys to a Foster Child program in your area. Invite someone to Christmas lunch who doesn’t have family. Teach your children the true meaning of Christmas. This is one tradition that your children will never forget.
What do you think of my list? Do you have a fun or quirky Family Christmas Tradition? Leave me a comment and share yours!