Holiday Family Traditions
The holidays are a time to revel in the gratitude and love we feel for one another. Here are 14 meaningful ways to celebrate your togetherness this season.
1. Go for a family nature walk near your home to collect seasonal items that you can use in your holiday
décor. If you live near a forest, the obvious choices are pine boughs and pine cones, but long dried grasses
can look just as festive when tied with a holiday bow. You might be pleasantly surprised at the
decorations that kids come up with, too.
2. Make a few handmade holiday cards this year as a family.
3. Make appreciation cards. In your holiday greeting cards, replace the annual Christmas letter
with a brief letter of appreciation for the recipient.
4. Create or purchase new ornaments each year for the tree. Create or shop for an ornament that
reflects a defining event or sentiment for the year.
5. Enjoy a Family Night with special holiday crafts or games. Oriental trading.com has some fun
and inexpensive items that you can keep among your holiday decorations.
6. Start a Christmas-themed puzzle somewhere in your home. A puzzle table, placed in a quiet room,
is great for holiday visitors. Whenever your guests want to get away from the action, they can retreat
to work on the puzzle. This can be a great stress-reliever, and it’s wonderful for those guests who
always have to be busy doing something!
7. Play special music. What is everyone’s favorite holiday CD? Allow each family member to choose
and keep them in the CD changer so everyone’s musical taste is represented.
8. Take a photo of your children standing in a particular spot each year – in front of the tree,
by the front door…anyplace that will be consistent from year to year. Make a special holiday ornament
or scrapbook album that depicts the growth and change of your family each year.
9. Research the holiday traditions of your nationality. Adopt a few of these traditions into your annual
celebration each year to celebrate your heritage.
10. Ask each child to write a Dear Santa letter. (Small children can draw pictures.) Keep a special
record of these letters in an album or treasure box.
11. Create an evening tradition of taking a family walk or drive in your neighborhood to view the
12. Cut snowflakes from wrapping paper, festive holiday advertisements, or last year’s holiday cards,
and string them together into a festive garland.
13. Adopt a special cause each year. The Heifer Project (http://www.heifer.org/) is wonderfully suited
for holiday traditions. This charity allows you to purchase a gift animal for a family in need (ranging
from heifers to rabbits and everything in between.) These gift animals then provide resources that these
families need live. When we purchase a Heifer Project gift for someone, the kids draw a picture of the
gifted animal, and we frame their artwork and wrap it.
14. Take your family to a performance of The Nutcracker. Performances of this ballet abound this time of
year – from professional companies to amateur dance studios. Purchase a CD to bring the memories home.