Almost everyone has family traditions that are participated in every Christmas season.
I grew up with a number of fun traditions which have been carried over into my own little family. For as far back as I can remember, I have gone out caroling to family and friends. There were nine children in my family, and Mom and Dad always took us out to sing carols just before Christmas.
My wife and I have carried on the tradition, adding our own grandchildren with our children, along with spouses and friends. Sometimes it can be quite the choir.
Mom liked to decorate the home, and we carry on that tradition. We have six times as many storage containers for our Christmas decorations as we do for any other holiday!
One of my favorite traditions that have been carried over from my childhood is the “mode” of opening gifts. Mom and Dad had us open gifts in age order, from the youngest to the oldest. Each one would open all of their gifts, one at a time, while the others watched. That way we could all see what each other had received, and the anticipation for our own turn would intensify as we waited!
I was the third oldest of the nine.
We now have our children and grand children over, and after a large breakfast, we separate the presents into piles according to our children’s birth order and the grandchildren open their presents with their parents.
There are also some traditions that we started with our own children.
We always light the Christmas Tree with at least sixteen strings of 100 light bulbs. It’s dazzling… but not blinding!
We have our traditional Christmas dinner on the day after Christmas. This way we do not conflict with any of the in-laws’ plans. At this dinner we present our children with a “family” gift… the same gift for all children… that has some significant meaning for all of us. It takes a bit of thoughtful consideration and advance planning… but they all seem to enjoy them!
Finally… my wife and I have made it a tradition to sing with our home town’s production of Handel’s “Messiah”. We sang with the very first production twenty five years ago, and have only missed a couple of times since then. I have even sung a bass solo in most of the performances over the years.
Traditions have always been an important part of our family life… and they can be for yours, as well.
The secret is to begin.
Why not start today?