Most Popular Posts

Monday, December 24, 2012

Our five holiday traditions

After writing about our new holiday ritual for Toby, I was really inspired by everyone else's holiday traditions. So we decided to nab four... :)

1. Many readers said their families eat a specific dinner on Christmas Eve every year. One reader's family makes grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup. Another reader's family bakes homemade pizzas. My mom's friend's family has Champagne and shrimp. I love the idea of having a Christmas Eve dinner tradition. Last year, my dad happened to make grilled salmon, followed by these chocolate lava cakes. So now he's doing it again this year:)

2. A reader named Jenny shared this magical tradition: "Every year, my mom, my sisters and I would pick a night and sleep under the Christmas tree. We'd pull out sleeping bags, drink egg nog and talk about our favorite memories. Then we'd fall asleep under the twinkling lights and shiny ornaments." How cute is that? When Toby is old enough (five? six?), I'd love to start this one.

3. A bunch of readers said they got new pajamas on Christmas Eve. "I'm 22 years old, and I STILL get pjs from my grandparents!" said a reader named Olivia. (And remember these three cuties?) So we decided to get Toby a new pair for tonight.

4. Finally, I loved the idea of giving your child a special ornament every year. "I'm now 27, and my Christmas tree is full of memories from when I was little," said a reader named Jessy. Toby's first ornament is this one, below, featuring his little profile from these beach photos, made by Lasso Creations.

5. Plus, we'll be doing our angel chimes...

Thank you so much for the inspiration, you guys! Happy holidays!!!

(Top photo of my brother, sister and me one Christmas morning)


Zoë said...

This is our first Christmas with our Baby. She doesn't really understand what's happening yet but I love showing her everything. She picked out an owl ornament at the store and put it on the tree herself (with much coaxing from us of course). I love that ornament with Toby's profile! Might have to get one for my Baby even though it'll be an after Christmas present!

Merry Christmas Joanna!

Chloe Moon said...

Merry Christmas! I like the special ornament tradition!! =)

Ergo - Blog

Hena Tayeb said...

I love traditions.. and while we don't celebrate Christmas ever since we had our son we have been trying to create various traditions.. He is still too young but when he is older I hope they are things he comes to cherish.

carlyrae said...

I love these! Our tradition was that my mom would make a scavenger hunt for our stockings every Christmas morning... we would get clues that led all over the house and finally to the stockings! My mom said she started it one year that we didn't have many presents as a way to make the morning last longer but we loved it so much (and my parents loved the chance to wake up) that we ended up doing it as long as we lived at home!

and now I can't wait until someday we have kids so we can do it with them as well :)

Chelsea MacMeekin said...

I love traditions especially around the holidays! My husband and I have been giving each other ornaments every year since we hve been dating and this year we, like you, are including our little guy!

merry merry christmas!
Haute Child in the City

alex said...

This is my 2nd married Christmas, so my husband and I are still figuring out our traditions. I'm going to try and start one tonight by getting us pajamas (AKA winter-patterned boxers) and a Christmas movie (Elf).

Courtney said...

when you wrote the original post I thought "eh, I don't have that many traditions" but now reading this one, I do every single one of these-- except sleeping under the tree, which sounds delightful. We're still trying to find our traditional c-eve dinner, since our family is still young, and we're just starting to do christmases on our own. We've done homemade pasta two years, and take-out two years... but mostly I'm starting to love having c-eve dinner with friends. We do have a traditional c-day breakfast though: a breakfast strada with li'l smokies and a danish tea ring, which is basically just cinnamon rolls, but instead of cutting them out individually, you wrap the dough into a large ring. it's beautiful!

littlekitchie said...

I'm 26 and still open my new Christmas PJs every year on Christmas Eve :) I love that tradition! We also do the same meal on Christmas Eve every year... a big, big antipasti spread, and traditional homemade tamales. I can't wait! Merry Christmas!

Lejla said...

Traditions make me happy. Happy holidays everyone!

Truett0620 said...

Every Christmas Eve my sister and I get to open one present. That present is always matching pajamas out mom picked out. We are 25 an 22

trinaenriquez said...

One of my family's Christmas traditions is to take a trip to the snow the day after, actually--and since we live in California's Central Valley and the Bay Area, snow's a big deal! It's lovely to head to Yosemite when the trees are icicled and the fields are virgin powder. Plus there's hardly a soul around.

My mom has done that with the Christmas ornaments every year. But my favorites are the ones my brother and I made ourselves when we were young.

Nomadic D. said...

Those are some really sweet and wonderful traditions! I love the idea of sleeping under the tree, and if it's done in new pjs then so much the better! When we start our own family I hope my husband and I make some beautiful traditions of our own. (And maybe I'll borrow some of these!) For now, my favorite holiday tradition is the making of insane and wacky christmas cookies, you can see a few from our past here:

Scout and Rice said...

Oooh yum, how good are Trader Joe's lava cakes?! I swear by baking them in the oven though, it only takes about 15 minutes but makes a world of difference.

Love the little ornament idea. :) We have started that tradition this year too.

Carissa said...

yep! my family did #3 and #4 (eventually we stopped the ornament one because we just had way too many!). and we still do #1. but I am in Arizona with my boyfriend's family this Christmas, and I don't think they have a traditional Christmas dinner that they eat every year... I'm not sure what we'll be having, so I'll be surprised! :)

cleartheway said...

I love that you use your blog to take inspiration from your readers. What a good use of your blog! Also, family traditions are so wonderful. I love the one about sleeping under the Christmas tree. That's so sweet! =]

Kate from Clear the Way

happymorningblog said...

Pyjamas as a Christmas gift is an excellent idea!
Family tradition is great.

east end girl said...

My children have been receiving a special ornament from their paternal grandmother since they were babies. They are now 19 and 17 so we are starting to run out of room on the tree! However, I like to think that when they leave home and have Christmas trees of their own they will already have a tree full of memories :)

Jossie loves said...

Merry Christmas Jo - have a divine one with your families and that divine little man of yours. We're celebrating with the addition of a new puppy! Mad. Good thing she is super cute at the moment! xxx

Laura Lariviere said...

I am 26 and every year I get PJs on Christmas Eve, and I always put them on. As a child we had a big party on Christmas Eve so I would put them on in front of everyone, still not at 26 I put them on for my family, usually over my clothes. We are French Canadian so we have a big dinner of Christmas Eve and the smaller kids open their gifts.

Laura Lariviere said...

I am 26 and every year I get PJs on Christmas Eve, and I always put them on. As a child we had a big party on Christmas Eve so I would put them on in front of everyone, still not at 26 I put them on for my family, usually over my clothes. We are French Canadian so we have a big dinner of Christmas Eve and the smaller kids open their gifts.

Sarah Chavey said...

Our family writes a clue on each gift - the more convoluted and misleading the better. For example I got my mom moccasins this year and the clue is "A cozy sty" as in a cozy place to keep your piggies (toes!). Then each person has to guess before opening their gift. It makes for a lot of laughs and extends the gifting process through out the whole morning. We usually have to have a half time for breakfast.

101580989776806710173 said...

Like your reader Olivia, I'm twenty one and my sisters and I have been getting 'christmas pyjamas' for my mum for very many years. Part of the tradition is that we close our eyes when our mum hands them to us!
I've just had a lovely polka-dot grey Muji pair and I'm so excited to put them on!

Amelia Rose x

jenny said...

It makes me so happy that you picked my tradition (#2)! I hope it brings you all as much joy as it has brought my family. I honestly look forward to it every year : ) Happy holidays!

Magdalena said...

The ornament idea is beyond adorable!

Taylor Laree said...

We've always done the ornament thing. It's always fun to see it hanging on the tree, & remember back to the year I got it.

Jake miller said...

Cheerful Christmas Jo - have a mind-blowing one with your families and that beautiful little man of yours. We're commemorating with the inclusion of a new pet! Mad. Great thing she was extremely adorable at the instant and why I find travel agents that was acquiring a awesome encounter for my vacation trip with my family too this holiday.

Erin said...

Merry Christmas! My family shares many of these traditions. Every Christmas eve we have some sort of soup with a Christmas-y pasta: little Christmas trees or red and green stripes. We always watch It's a Wonderful Life and open our pjs (always in the same gift bags!)

Bethany Susan said...

My family does all four of those (we make Tortellini soup on Christmas Eve), and I just looooove having so many years and layers of traditions to celebrate with them! Excited for you and your family to build your own. I'd say the ornament one is a favorite. My mom used to buy or make them for all eight of us kids, but in recent years my little sister has taken over, and it's such fun seeing her creativity come out and get displayed right there on the tree!

Luisa Brimble said...

Merry Christmas to you Joanna and your little family. May you have the most marvellous time celebrating the holiday season. Big hello from Sydney Australia.

Laura said...

Love the sleeping-under-the-christmastree-tradition.
In my family we have some similar ones: the christmas ornament one (although our tree this year was so tiny we couldn't even use half of the ones we have), playing the same CD of christmas songs while decoration, similar food, etc.
But most of all we also have the PJ-tradition. My dad remembered it from his childhood some years ago and re-introduced it. Now we all love it. He gets us (mom, dad, my brother and I) all matching PJs on christmas eve - and we are both adults in our 20ies. It cracks us up every time and then christmas morning we take pictures all in our PJs - it's the funniest thing ever. This year they were robes (even for the guys!), striped in different colors.
Merry Christmas!

distract_me said...

Love Christmas traditions! Happy Christmas to you and your family xx said...

My parents are divorced, so we've always shuttled between my mom and dad's on Christmas. My mom, of course, kept up all her traditions, but with my bachelor dad, we had to make some new ones.

Since my dad always made us omelettes as children, we decided that whether we woke up at my dad's or went over there in the afternoon, we'd have breakfast with him. Sometimes it's pancakes and bacon at 7:30 at night or the cinnamon rolls and fruit we had this morning... It's good to have traditions and I hope we'll keep it up.

dervla kelly said...

wow, i love your list of traditions. I try to take a few from my husband's side (but mostly from mine, to be honest) ... we also make sure to go out for a Christmas day walk in central park ... to feel the cool air against our faces and work up an appetite for dinner!

Iqra Maqsood said...

Hellow, Well I must say that you are doing a Great job! ... I really appreciate your work. And your information is really helpful .. Keep up the good work. Keep sharing your information with us. Commenting on this site is a pleasure for me. I had really liked reading this site it was very good. The content of this blog was very nice. Like it!

Kristen said...

I'm more than a little late with this suggestion, but to add to the Christmas ornament idea - my mom would buy an ornament for me and my brother each year and we'd write down the year along with a few of our favorite things on the back. When we were little it was things like Tweety Bird and "What is Love" (that song from Night at the Roxbury - yeah, my brother was a weird kid), but it's a nice way to look back on those years. It's also a bit embarrassing to see our history of terrible taste in music, but I still love this tradition!

dc_occ said...

I had that same pink princess doll when I was young! Loved it sooooo much. Makes me smile to see it again -- thanks!

Natalie said...

When I was little and we (mom & brothers) lived with my Grandparents, my Grampa would make an omelet every Christmas morning. He made the best and despite my past/best efforts, my omelet making skills are severely lacking.

A tradition I was introduced to in my boyfriend's family, is every Thanksgiving his Mom gives everyone a new Hallmark ornament. Each person has their own series and it's so fun to be able to look back and cherish those memories.

Natalie said...

My family also always has a big Polish meal on Christmas Eve; sausage, kapusta, pierogi, potato salad, etc., yummy!

Caroline Beeson said...

And Christmas music! I used to love listening to the same albums each year - in the car & at home - now I have a cd of my favourite Christmas songs downloaded from iTunes :)

Alie said...

My husband's yearly ornaments are such an important part of our life. His mom died unexpectedly when he was 11, but each year until that she bought or made the kids their own ornaments. Now it's a really special thing for us to decorate our tree with them and remember her. Even seeing her handwriting on the bottom that says, "Tyler 1995" gets me all teary-eyed!

Because it's been so special to have all those ornaments picked out by his mom, we've started it as a tradition, too. I pick one out for our kids for each year, and then one family ornament (or "couples" ornament) that summarizes our year. For example, this year we splurged and bought a Balsam Hill Christmas tree (!!) and also moved to the Bay area. So naturally I fell in love with a rainbow-colored christmas tree ornament!

Jess said...

My mother has given my sister and I a new ornament every year since we were born as well. Her idea was that by the time we were old enough to move out, we'd have enough ornaments to fill our own trees. (Though she still gives them to us although we've both grown up and moved out.) They've become so much more to me than "something to fill my tree." It's a great tradition, and one I'm glad you started with Toby! He may not appreciate them now or even in ten years, but he certainly will when he's grown. :)

Amy P said...

Our daughter just had her second Christmas, but is still a little young to 'get it'. But I decided this year to start the tradition of new socks & pajamas on Christmas Eve in our stockings - we haven't bothered with 'real' gifts yet for her because she gets so much new stuff from grandparents and aunts and uncles and it seems pointless. I end up hiding half the stuff she gets and doling it out later anyway :) But I think we'll end up doing the 'one thing you want, one thing you need, one thing you wear (pajamas, in this case) and one thing you read' idea as our kid(s) get older. Otherwise the gifts just get so out of hand.

Saundra McKenzie said...

It's wonderful that you are starting traditions. I am 58 and think traditions are wonderful for children. I so enjoyed watching my two sons doing some of the same traditions with their children that we did when they were young. Great job!

Elisse said...

Toby is seriously such a cute little guy. I LOVE that ornament.

Luna said...

Christmas week, our family sleep together in the family room where the Christmas Tree is, with it's lights on. Throughout December we watch a Christmas movie every week and Christmas themed books in a basket under the tree (I forgot this year, oops).

A new tradition I started this year, we saw the film 'The Polar Express' and in the boys' Santa Stocking, I put in a bell with a red ribbon. Every year, I will put in a new one as long our children still believe in 'The Spirit of Christmas'. Our children kept ringing the bell on and off throughout the day. Wonderful!

Unknown said...

Our family tradition is simple and silly: the kids (for us that means the 20-somethings) wake up earlier than the rest, open their stockings and make breakfast for the family. We've been doing it since the end of middle school and still cherish it.

happyseasons Goyal said...

Your post is very nice and beautiful andjmifx i got many
tips ideas from your post thanks for sharing :)

happyseasons Goyal said...

Your post is very nice and beautiful andjmifx i got many
tips ideas from your post thanks for sharing :)

melanie said...

I wanted to tell you that we stayed at this incredible lodge over the holiday, Mankas at Inverness here in California and each night they left us gifts. The last night they left angle chimes! I thought of you and traditions. I can't wait to light ours next Christmas.

Denise said...

I love the idea of sleeping around the Christmas tree and can't wait to introduce that when my little guy is older!! I always cook seafood gumbo on Christmas Eve after going to church. And my parents always give us a pair of JCrew PJ pants, always in the same gift bags which are now taped together.

Another fun tradition that we do with my in-laws is on New Years Eve, everyone tells a highlight or two of the year (nobody can have the same thing) and they are written down and kept in a special box. We've been doing it for 5 years now and it's so fun to read through the highlights from years past! Even when we're not all together we call in our highlights on the phone.

Nicole Renee said...

In addition to getting an ornament for each child each year, my Mom started the tradition of collecting an ornament from every place we go on vacation. We write the date and the location in an obscure place (often the bottom) with sharpie. My husband and I have continued the tradition and several friends have adopted it. I love to decorate the tree and think of all the awesome trips we have taken together and separately. Since we often travel with friends I get to think of them as well.

Tony Guard said...

What a happy familY! They are cute!.

Toko Bunga Online | Toko Bunga

rain chane said... is committed to offer cheap World of Warcraft Gold, WOW CD Key, WOW Power Leveling service for all realms to the needs of wow players who want to maximize their gaming experience.

tags:world of warcraft gold , cheap world of warcraft gold ,buy world of warcraft gold

kat mast said...

What a happy familY! They are cute!.

Tag:WoW Gold,Diablo 3 Gold,Diablo 3 Gold kaufen,guild wars 2 gold,

serkan delikan said...

very blog
sohbet & sohbet odaları
chat sohbet & kelebek sohbet & kelebek chat
kelebek indir & mirc indir &kelebek sohbet
kelebek chat & sohbet odalari & sohbet
cinsel sohbet & cinsel chat &
urfa & urfa haber
sohbet & chat
kelebek sohbet & kelebek chat
chat yap & sohbet kanalları
sohbet kanalı & chat kanalı &
mynet sohbet & mynet & mirc indir
mirc & sohbet odaları
dul bayan & olgun bayan
klima servisi & klima & arçelik klima servisi
vestel klima servisi

العالمية للصيانة said...

Thank you very much
ترميم البيت
كشف تسربات المياه بالرياض
عزل الاسطح
تخزين اثاث
مكافحة الحشرات
تنظيف خزانات

Cengiz Asikoglu said...

Great blog here! Additionally your website so much up very fast!
What web host klima servisi are you using? Can I get your affiliate link to your host?I want my site loaded up as klima servisleri quickly as yours lol I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here. vestel klima servisi The sketch is tasteful, your authored subject matter stylish.nonetheless, you klima servisi command get bought an nervousness over that you wish be delivering the following.unwell unquestionably demirdökümkombi servisi come further formerly again since exactly the same nearly a lot often inside case you shield this demirdöküm servis increase. Wow, incredible blog layout! How long have you been blogging eca kombi servisi for?you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your web site is great, as well as the content! Just want to say your article is as baykan kombi servisi astounding. The clarity in your post is just nice and i can assume you're an expert on this subject. Fine with your permission let me to grab your RSS feed to keep updated with forthcoming post. baymak kombi servisi Thanks a million and please keep up the rewarding work. demirdöküm soba servisi - demirdöküm

reham magdy said...

عزل خزانات بالرياض
شركة تنظيف فلل بالرياض
شركة تنظيف بالرياض
شركة تنظيف منازل بالرياض
نقل اثاث بالرياض
شركة نقل اثاث
شركة نظافة بالرياض
شركات نظافة بالرياض
تنظيف فلل
شركة تنظيف خزانات
شركة تسليك المجارى بالرياض
شركات نقل الأثاث في الرياض

reham magdy said...

عزل خزانات بالرياض
شركة تنظيف فلل بالرياض
شركة تنظيف بالرياض
شركة تنظيف منازل بالرياض
نقل اثاث بالرياض
شركة نقل اثاث
شركة نظافة بالرياض
شركات نظافة بالرياض
تنظيف فلل
شركة تنظيف خزانات
شركة تسليك المجارى بالرياض
شركات نقل الأثاث في الرياض

ribut ariadi said...

Thank you for your very nice article, do not forget to read my articles also humor dewasa, status fb galau, status fb romantis, status fb lucu and many other interesting articles on my blog that.

Vickie Carrington said...

we would get clues that led all over the house and finally to the stockings! My mom said she started it one year that we didn't have many presents as a way to make the morning last longer but we loved it so much (and my parents loved the chance to wake up) that we ended up doing it as long as we lived at home!

Site design by Apartment One
Federated Media Publishing - Style