Thirty-one days…

As I was typing the title for this blog post, I wanted to break out in song.  The word tradition reminds me of Fiddler on the Roof.  That’s neither here nor there; I just had to mention it…

I grew up with some very special Christmas traditions.  All of my family gathers together every Christmas Eve.  We eat the exact same foods every year and enjoy each other’s company in a way that makes it feel like Christmas.  When I was a child, I could hardly wait for Christmas Eve.  It was the highlight of the year.  Everything about it was exciting.  I’m from a divorced family, so I would spend half of the evening at my mother’s family celebration, and then join my father with his family, which was an equally large celebratory event.  I remember my dad had a really nice leather coat that he would wear for special occasions.  The smell of leather reminds me of my dad on Christmas Eve.  Italian food and loud boisterous voices remind me of my mother’s family.  When you are a kid, you think those moments will last forever.  I wish they did.  Sadly, loved ones pass away, and things are never quite the same.  Yet, we try to continue to carry on these beautiful traditions from our youth and begin new ones for our children to experience.

I love to bake, especially at Christmastime.  I bake several different kinds of cookies.  Many of them are special cookies that I only make at this time of year.  It has become a tradition to bake them, serve them at parties, and even give some away as gifts.  Years ago, I started a Christmas Eve pajama tradition.  I buy my family special matching pajama’s each year, we open them together on Christmas Eve, (Yes, I buy and wrap my own.) and wear them to sleep in that night.  We take lots of family pictures in them, and they look super cute in the Christmas morning videos.  I make homemade hot chocolate and brunch every Christmas morning as well.  If I didn’t work to accomplish these traditional tasks at Christmas, I don’t believe it would feel like Christmas at all for my family.

As I’ve been preparing for all of these traditions, I began wondering about what others do at Christmas that makes it a special time for their families.  I would love to hear from you.  What traditions make Christmas truly feel like Christmas for you?


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